Only 23% of Americans Get Enough Exercise, a CDC Report Says


Less than the usual quarter of Americans are meeting all national exercise guidelines, based on a new report in the Cdc and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

Federal exercise guidelines recommend that adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise every week, along with muscle-strengthening activities at least two times per week. But based on the new NCHS report, which drew on five years of information in the National Health Interview Survey, no more than 23% of adults ages 18 to 64 are hitting both of those marks. Another 32% met one although not both, and almost 45% didn’t hit either benchmark.

Those numbers fluctuated somewhat depending on gender, occupation and home state. More men (roughly 27%) than women (almost 19%) met both guidelines, and both genders saw slightly higher percentages among working adults (almost 29% and 21%, respectively).

The authors also added that people employed in managerial or “professional” positions were more likely than individuals being produced roles, for example assembly and manufacturing, to meet the standards. However, the report looked limited to leisure-time exercise, so adults who log exercise through active jobs or commutes were not included in the findings.

Some states saw adherence rates well above the national average, while others were well below. Colorado led those, with 32.5% of adults meeting both federal exercise guidelines. In Mississippi, just 13.5% of adults reported meeting both exercise guidelines.

With some exceptions, states around the West Coast and in the Northeast tended to have higher percentages of residents meeting the rules than states within the South. Residents of states in the Southeast had particularly low rates. High amounts of unemployment and disability or illness in a condition were correlated with lower rates of meeting exercise guidelines, the researchers found.

In all, the outcomes claim that most Americans need to squeeze more exercise to their time off, given its well-established connections to everything from chronic disease prevention to mental and cognitive health benefits.