Jersey Day 2013 002Sports fanatics at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC) wore their favourite team jerseys to work on Friday, November 29 to promote physical activity as part of National Jersey Day. National Jersey Day is a nation-wide event sponsored by ParticipACTION that aims to increase awareness of and promote physical activity as a fundamental part of living a healthy lifestyle.

Sara Chow, health promotion and communications planner with Prevention and Screening Services at TBRHSC, emphasized the value of promoting physical activity, “as a hospital we need to be leaders in health, and we know that being physically active can help to prevent chronic disease and lead to a healthier life.”

The Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines state that adults, between the ages of 18 and 64 years, should accumulate 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous exercise each week. However, Canadians are getting much less than what is recommended and the declining activity is resulting in increased obesity. Obesity is a known health risk factor for many diseases including breast cancer, colorectal cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

Although 150 minutes of exercise may seem like a daunting amount, it’s the same as getting 30 minutes of exercise 5 days per week. And if that seems like too much, the guidelines say that you can accumulate your 150 minutes in smaller 10-minute bouts of time.

“There are many ways for you to incorporate physical activity into your everyday routine. If you can’t squeeze the gym in, go for brisk walks on your work breaks or play with your kids outside when you get home” says Kyle Baysarowich, cardiac rehabilitation coordinator at TBRHSC.

What’s most interesting about physical activity is that it is used to prevent the onset of illness, but it is also used to help treat people who are already experiencing chronic disease. “It’s a full circle. We use exercise as a prevention method to deter diseases from developing, but we also use exercise to prevent further disease or to help treat it” adds Baysarowich.

Whether you are young or old, big or small, a runner or a walker, being physically active is important for your overall health and well-being. Encourage your family and friends to be active and get moving.

For more information on how you can be active visit