The 2018 Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth

The primary goal of the 2018 U.S. Report Card is to assess the levels of physical activity and sedentary behaviors in American children and youth, facilitators and barriers for physical activity, and health outcomes related to physical activity.

Support for development of the 2018 U.S. Report Card was provided by the following National Physical Activity Plan Alliance Organizational Partners:  SHAPE America and the American Council on Exercise. Production and design of the 2018 Report Card was supported by SHAPE America.

Download the Report:

2018 Report Card2018 Executive Summary

Suggested Citation:
 National Physical Activity Plan Alliance. The 2018 United States Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth. Washington, DC: National Physical Activity Plan Alliance, 2018.

2018 Release Event

The 2018 U.S. Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth was released on October 2nd, 2018 with an event in Washington, D.C. Speakers included Rear Admiral Retired Boris D. Lushniak, MD, MPH (Former Deputy and Acting Surgeon General of the United States and current dean of the University of Maryland School of Public Health), Russell Pate, PhD (Chair, National Physical Activity Plan), Peter T. Katzmarzyk, PhD, FACSM, FAHA (Chair, U.S. Report Card Research Advisory Committee), and Jim Whitehead (Chief Executive Officer and Executive Vice President American College of Sports Medicine).

Background and Methodology

The tracking of physical activity indicators over time is an important surveillance tactic that allows for an assessment of population-level changes in behavior. The Report Card is a resource that summarizes health statistics related to physical activity levels among children and youth in the U.S. More importantly, the Report Card is an advocacy tool that provides a level of accountability and call-to-action for decision makers regarding how we, as parents, teachers, health professionals, community leaders, and policy makers, can implement new initiatives, programs, and policies in support of healthy environments to improve the physical activity levels and health of our children and youth.

The Report Card Research Advisory Committee (the Committee), a sub-committee of the NPAP Alliance, included experts in diverse areas of physical activity and health behaviors from academic institutions and partner organizations across the country. The Committee was charged with the development and dissemination of the U.S. Report Card, which included determining which indicators to include, identifying the best available data sources(s), and assigning a letter grade to each indicator based on the best available evidence.

Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance

The U.S. Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth is a member of the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance.

The Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance was established in 2014, following the success of the world’s first Global Summit on the Physical Activity of Children in Toronto, Canada. In 2014, 15 countries, including the U.S., participated in the Global Matrix 1.0, releasing a set of physical activity report cards using a standard set of indicators. The Global Matrix 2.0 included 38 countries, and was released in conjunction with the 2016 Physical Activity and Public Health Congress in Bangkok, Thailand.

The 2018 U.S. Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth is participating in the Global Matrix 3.0, with a release in November 2018 in Adelaide, Australia.

Historical Reports
  1. The 2014 United States Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth
  2. The 2016 United States Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth
Oliver Bartzsch is an experienced medical professional with over 15 years of professional experience. With a passion for medicine, fitness, and personal growth, he is always willing to challenge himself to accomplish tasks and especially to provide accurate medical information to people. Oliver is a long-time medical editor for multiple sites. With more than 10 years of medical writing experience, he has completed over 350 projects with both individual and corporate clients.


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