Physical exercise is one of the necessary pillars to lead a healthy life. Therefore, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends doing it at least two hours a week. Well, 18 percent of the world's population does not exercise during the week and 55 percent dedicate less than two hours to this type of activity. As for the Spanish, half (48% to be exact) does not reach that minimum recommended by the WHO. These data have been extracted from II International Study Bupa Health Pulse 2011, carried out by Bupa (Sanitas parent company).

The research has been developed thanks to 13,373 interviews conducted on-line in Saudi Arabia, Australia, Brazil, China, Spain, the United States, Hong Kong, India, New Zealand, Mexico, the United Kingdom and Thailand. Brazil - with 33 percent - and Saudi Arabia 32 percent - top the list of countries where there is less exercise, although eight out of ten respondents consider their lifestyle healthy (81% and 84% respectively) . On the other end stand China (58 percent) and the US (55 percent), nations in which more than half of the population claims to devote more than two hours to sports.

Work (46%) and lack of time (25%) are the main obstacles that respondents put as an excuse for not doing more sport

As for Spaniards, work (46%) and lack of time (25%) are the main obstacles that respondents put as an excuse for not doing more sport. Percentages far above the rest of the participating countries. And is that, despite the benefits of sport for the mind and body, only 38% of the Iberian includes sports activity in their daily routine, compared to 47% of the world population that declares to practice physical exercise with assiduity. 22 of every 100 Spaniards recognize that they only practice sports sporadically because they do not consider it a pleasant activity, although 37% think it would be advisable to increase their physical activity. Mexicans (33%), New Zealanders (38%) and British (39%) also show little disposition towards sports.

Being accompanied is always a little push to be encouraged to practice some sport and, for 62% of Spaniards, it is more enjoyable to do physical exercise in a group or accompanied by friends. The important thing, however, is to remember that even a simple walk in a park or through the streets of a city allows you to stay in shape, helps prevent long-term illnesses, improves our immune system and muscle tone, helps to lower blood pressure , or help to lose those extra kilos. Are you still looking for excuses not to wear sports shoes and go out to play sports?

Source: Bupa / Sanitas

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