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Public Health England launches Better Health campaign

Public Health England launches Better Health campaign

Categories: Health & Wellbeing

We’re supporting Public Health England’s Better Health campaign, which aims to provide an opportunity for the nation to reset and introduce healthy changes to their lives.

The campaign is based on the premise that for many, the past few months have been a wake-up call. Coronavirus (Covid-19) has affected the whole country; for almost everyone, life has had to fundamentally change. But it’s also prompted many people to reflect and think more seriously about their health.

What’s more, people have been surprised by how able they’ve been to change their behaviour, with lockdown showing many they’re able to make and sustain changes to their lives.

Sport England have been working closely with Public Health England (PHE) to ensure physical activity features prominently in the work to encourage people to lead healthier lives, building on our existing work to increase activity levels across the nation.

While Better Health has initially been focused on encouraging people to lose and manage their weight, given the links around the impact of coronavirus and levels of obesity across the UK, Sport England's focus is on supporting people from all backgrounds to build their activity levels and support the changes they wish to make on this front to live a healthier, happier life.

We shouldn’t underestimate the scale of the challenge

We know from our work in tracking activity levels during lockdown that coronavirus has massively disrupted people's ability to exercise.

While adult activity levels have broadly held up in recent months, with many finding new ways to stay fit, as society has reopened there’s been a dip in numbers. The latest figures show just 27% of adults are meeting the Chief Medical Officer’s recommended 30 minutes of activity on five or more days a week.

Sport England are used to building strong partnerships with PHE and the NHS, with their Moving Healthcare Professionals programme helping healthcare professionals to embed physical activity into their clinical approach.

They’ve also worked with PHE and Disney on the Change4Life 10 Minute Shake Up, and been working with NHS England and the National Academy for Social Prescribing to ensure high-quality physical activity advice and support forms part of all social prescribing schemes.

These schemes are all vital in helping to embed physical activity into the lives of people who most stand to benefit, and it’s this sort of approach we believe can complement the government's plans to tackle obesity through making healthier choices about what they eat.

Sport England are working with partners - including Active Sussex and other Active Partnerships throughout the country - to ensure that specific messaging and interventions are boosted to the target audiences of the Better Health campaign, and they’re seeking to make further funding interventions to key fitness products with these groups in mind. 

Through a partnership with London Sport, they’ve invested in a campaign to promote Couch to 5k to BAME and lower socio-economic communities, who’ve been disproportionately affected by coronavirus.

And they’re partnering with Our Parks, a London 2012 legacy initiative offering easy and barrier-free access to exercise, to launch a free, on-demand programme using only bodyweight-based exercises called Couch to Fitness, in the coming weeks.

Sport England will continue to provide the campaign with the latest insight from our regular activity levels tracking, and work closely with government as it seeks to make changes to the physical activity landscape – including through significant investments enabling people to cycle more.

As the campaign develops and Sport England provide further insight and research, we will continually keep our partners updated and informed with the latest information and messaging.

For more information on looking after your health and wellbeing, visit our webpages.