Table 1

Surveys that report on the percentage of the population meeting the UK physical activity guidelines in 2018 by country and the recommendations monitored

Country Survey Commissioners Contracted to Survey method Recommendation measured
MVPA Muscle strength Balance Sedentary behaviour
Adults/older adults Children Adults/older adults Children Older adults Adults/older adults Children
EnglandActive Lives Survey21 Sport England in partnership with other bodies and government departmentsIpsos MORIPostal invite to online (mobile/desktop) completion. Paper questionnaire sent if non-response✓*
Health Survey for England16 Department of HealthNational Centre for Social ResearchComputer-assisted personal interviewing✔*✔†
Active Lives: Children and Young People Survey22 Sport England in partnership with government departmentsIpsos MORISchool-based, self-administered online. Additional teacher and parent questionnaires
Northern IrelandHealth Survey for Northern Ireland17 Department of HealthCentral Survey Unit of the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research AgencyComputer-assisted personal interviewing
Young Persons’ Behaviour and Attitudes Survey23 Department of HealthCentral Survey Unit of the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research AgencySelf-administered personal interviewing (now uses tablets)
Continuous Household Survey19 A number of Government Departments and AgenciesCentral Survey Unit of the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research AgencyComputer-assisted personal interviewing
ScotlandScottish Health Survey18 The Scottish GovernmentScottish Centre for Social ResearchComputer-assisted personal interviewing
WalesNational Survey for Wales20 Welsh GovernmentOffice for National StatisticsComputer-assisted personal interviewing
England, Scotland, WalesHealth Behaviour in School-Aged Children24–26 Supported by WHO and other partnersUndertaken by a consortium of academics from different countriesSchool-based, self-administered questionnaires, varying methods of administration
  • *Official statistic provided by Active Lives Survey not the Health Survey for England.

  • †Also reports on recommendation for under 5s separately to children 5–15 years old.

  • ‡Some measure of a specific behaviour or domain, most commonly TV/screen time.

  • MVPA, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity.