MoH marks World Day for Physical Activity with walkathon, cycling

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN (Borneo Bulletin/ANN) - The Ministry of Health (MoH), through the Health Promotion Centre, and with cooperation from the Youth and Sports Department under the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, organised an aerobics session, a 3.5km walkathon and an 11.5km cycling event yesterday morning to celebrate this year’s World Day for Physical Activity and promote an active lifestyle among Bruneians.

The event took place at Taman Haji Sir Muda Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien.

The guest of honour was Haji Abdul Manap bin Othman, Permanent Secretary at the MoH.

As part of a health campaign themed ‘Call for Action’, the event aimed to reduce prolonged sitting within government and private sector offices by encouraging staff to carry out physical activities in their workplace.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has introduced World Day for Physical Activity, which falls on April 6 every year, to increase awareness and knowledge on the benefits and importance of physical activity. The theme for this year’s celebrations is ‘Be Active Every Day’.

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer, heart diseases, diabetes and stroke remain the leading causes of death in Brunei, accounting for 51.1 per cent of all mortalities.

Findings from the National Health and Nutritional Status Survey (NHANSS) in 2011 and National Non Communicable Diseases (NNCD) STEPS 2016 research carried out in Brunei show that the number of overweight adults in the country has risen from 33 per cent in 2011 to a staggering 62.8 per cent in 2016, contributing to an increase in obesity rates from 27 per cent in 2011 to 28 per cent in 2016.

One of the main causes for this worrying trend is a physically inactive lifestyle.

According to the NHANSS survey in 2011, the rate of physical inactivity in the country was 34.8 per cent, while in the NNCD STEPS survey in 2016 the rate of physical inactivity was 25.3 per cent.

Throughout the duration of the campaign, which runs from April 16 – 28, physical activities carried out by staff of government departments or private sector companies can be uploaded to the Health Promotion Centre’s Facebook page or Instagram profile @hpcBrunei, or by hashtagging #CAPAI30workplace.