CDC Releases Physical Inactivity Map

February 3, 2020

Post by Sarah Schindler, Esq.

(Featured Photo: Our very own Dr. Philip Robin snowboarding in one of the nation’s most physically active states.)

On January 16th, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released a map charting adult physical inactivity across the United States. The results might surprise you.

For starters, ALL states and territories had over 15% of adults who were physically inactive.  States ranged from 17.3% physically inactive all the way up to 47.7% inactive.  “Physical inactivity” was defined as self-report of engaging in no leisure-time physical activity (like running or walking for exercise) during the past month. Here are some of the other noteworthy results:

  • The South (28.0%) had the highest prevalence of physical inactivity, followed by the Northeast (25.6%), Midwest (25.0%), and the West (20.5%).
  • In 4 states (Colorado, Washington, Utah, and Oregon) and the District of Columbia, 15% to less than 20% of adults were physically inactive.
  • In 7 states (Tennessee, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Alabama, Kentucky, Arkansas, and Mississippi), and 2 US territories (Puerto Rico, and Guam), 30% or more of adults were physically inactive.

Our home states of Pennsylvania and New Jersey fell right around the middle of the pack as compared to other states and territories.  The complete results can be reviewed on the CDC website:  https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/data/inactivity-prevalence-maps/index.html

In this day and age, it almost goes without saying that physical activity is critical to our health.  Studies have linked sedentary lifestyle to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, certain types of cancers, and depression.  The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition, recommends that adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week.

So, consider this a friendly reminder to keep on moving as we head into 2020!