By Dr. Marcos Agostinho
A historic celebration of World Physical Activity Day 2017 took place in The City of Football, home of the Portuguese Football Federation (FPF), with a formal public presentation of the National Program for the Promotion of Physical Activity. The program was coordinated by the Health Ministry, in Portugal’s Directorate-General of Health (DGS), and was presented by its Director, Professor Pedro Teixeira, from The Faculty of Human Kinetics – University of Lisbon (FMH).
With the participation of Portugal’s Ministers of Health and Education, the celebration was also marked by the signing of a unique formal partnership between the FPF, DGS and FMH for the dissemination of The EuroFIT program, derived from a EU H2020 funded project. EuroFIT uses some of the biggest national and European football clubs’ venues for the fight against sedentary lifestyles and related problems.
EuroFIT (European Fans In Training) is a social innovation program aimed at improving physical activity and sedentary behaviour through elite European football clubs. Its overall objective is to build new social partnerships between football clubs, fans and researchers that harness the power of football to deliver an innovative public health programme. The innovation will address the problems of physical inactivity, sedentary behaviour and poor diet. More can be found here: http://eurofitfp7.eu/excellent-further-media-coverage-for-eurofit-in-portugal/
As for Portugal’s recent National Program for the Promotion of Physical Activity (PNPAF), four primary strategic objectives were created for the 2017-2020 period:
- Promote awareness, physical literacy and the readiness of the entire population to practice regular physical activity and reduce sedentary time;
- Promote the generalization of assessment, counseling and referral of physical activity at the primary health care level;
- Encourage environments that promote physical activity in leisure spaces, in the workplace, in schools and universities, in transportation and in health services;
- Promote epidemiological surveillance and research, and value and disseminate good practices in the field of physical activity promotion and sport.
More information can be found here at the official program’s website: http://www.dgs.pt/pns-e-programas/programas-de-saude-prioritarios/atividade-fisica.aspx
Dr. Marcos Agostinho, MD, PGDip (SEM), BASc (MB)
Primary Care Sports Medicine Physician (CUF Torres Vedras Hospital), Family Physician & General Practitioner (USF Santa Cruz), Collaborator for The National Program for the Promotion of Physical Activity (DGS Portugal), Associate Editor British Journal of Sports Medicine (BJSM), Associate Editor BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine (BMJ)