Cambridgeshire children urged to shake up their summer as just one in five meet daily recommended level of activity

Cambridgeshire children are being urged to shake up their summer holidays and take part in a Disney inspired activity programme.

New figures show just 26% of boys and 17% of girls in the East of England currently meet the daily national recommended level of activity of 60 minutes.  And one in five children (20.9%) in the region start primary school overweight or obese, rising to more than a third 31.7%) by the time they leave.

Cambridgeshire County Council is supporting Change4Life’s national 10 Minute Shake Ups programme with Disney, Sport England and schools which has launched in the county to help get children active .

The programme has launched following findings that the number of children nationally meeting the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity for healthy development and to maintain a healthy weight, drops by 40% as they move through primary school.

A new survey from Public Health England and Disney which looked at the effects of physical activity on children’s emotional wellbeing, found being active made the majority of 5-11 year olds in Cambridgeshire feel happier (86%), more confident (82%) and more sociable (82%) , according to their parents.

Most children said they liked being active (99%) and the main motivations for kids to be more active was having friends to join in (56%) and having more activities they liked to choose from (51%)

To help youngsters in the county do more activity throughout the summer holidays, Change4Life has launched its 10 Minute Shake Ups programme which offers fun, 10-minute activities for kids, featuring their favourite Disney characters and shows as inspiration. This year the activities focuses on core skills such as running, jumping, throwing, catching and balance which can be completed throughout the day.

Thousands of children across England have received a 10 Minute Shake Ups suitcase worksheet plus a passport and stickers to help them embark on a Shake Up adventure with Disney over the summer. When they have done their Shake Ups, which are released each week on the Change4Life website over the summer holidays, they can choose a sticker and ‘stamp’ it in their passport page.

There is also a summer event finder, for people to find events happening in their local area. The County Council is also promoting the campaign across pharmacies and libraries to help engage families locally.

Val Thomas, Consultant in Public Health at Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “This is a great way to encourage children to be more active over the summer holidays. It is recommended that children do 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity each day for healthy development and to maintain a healthy weight. Every 10 minute burst of exercise can make a real difference in helping children achieve this. The programme also aims to inspire longer term activity among children and promote healthy habits all year round.”

Last year, the 10 Minute Shake Ups programme helped over a million children get more active. When children return to school in September, more activities will be released on the Change4Life schools website to encourage them to carry on being active both in and outside the classroom.

For more information and to take part in this summer’s programme, visit