Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Active Living Principles

Active living is a way of life that integrates physical activity into daily routines. The goal is to accumulate at least 30 minutes of activity each day. Individuals may achieve this by walking or bicycling for transportation, exercise or pleasure; playing in the park; working in the yard; taking the stairs; and using recreation facilities.

In committing to promoting and increasing physical activity, these principles will guide future interdisciplinary collaboration in the active living movement.

1. Physical activity is a behavior that can favorably improve health and quality of life.

2. Everyone, regardless of age, gender, language, ethnicity, economic status or ability, should have safe, convenient and affordable choices for physical activity.

3. Places should be designed to provide a variety of opportunities for physical activity and should accommodate a wide range of individual preferences and abilities.

4. Development patterns should encourage mixed uses, compact design, and a variety of transportation choices.

5. Buildings should be designed and oriented to promote opportunities for active living, especially active transportation.

6. Transportation systems, including transit, should provide safe, convenient and affordable access to housing, worksites, schools and community services.

7. Parks and green space, including trails, should be safe, accessible and part of a transportation network that connects destinations of interest, such as housing, worksites, schools, community services and other places with high population density.

8. Municipalities and other governing bodies should plan for ongoing interdisciplinary collaboration, promotion of facilities, behavioral supports, policies that institutionalize the vision of active living, and routine maintenance that ensures continued safety, quality and attractiveness of the physical infrastructure.
9. Community governing and planning processes should address the multiple impacts of the built environment and transportation choices on residents' ability to be physically active.