Physical activity

Health & Wellbeing priority:

Reduce physical inactivity

  • Reducing physical inactivity has wide ranging benefits to population health and wellbeing.  It can reduce the prevalence of long term illness, improve mental health and reduce the need for health and social care support.

  • It is estimated that physical inactivity causes 6% of coronary heart disease, 7% of type 2 diabetes, 10% of breast cancer and 10% of colon cancer.

  • Physical activity in older people is a powerful intervention in preventing frailty and promoting successful ageing, which becomes increasingly important as the Trafford population ages.

How many people are inactive in Trafford?

Based on Public Health England’s definition (which includes gardening as a form of activity), it is estimated that more than one in five (21.7%) Trafford adults are inactive (i.e. about 38,300 aged 19+ years).   This is similar to the England average (22.2%), but some similar authorities do better (e.g. Stockport=16.4%).  The most recent Trafford estimate represents an improvement (reduction) on the previous year, when prevalence of inactivity was estimated at nearer to one in four (24.0%). 

Source: PHE Physical Activity Profiles

Which groups within Trafford are more likely to be inactive?

Based on Greater Sport’s definition (which excludes gardening), it is estimated that almost 1 in 4 Trafford residents (24.4%) are inactive.  Rates of physical inactivity vary by:

Gender: Inactivity levels are higher (worse) among women (26.3%) compared to men (22.3%)

Age: Rates of inactivity are lowest among those aged 16-34 (14.1%), rising to more than half (52.6%) among those aged 75+ years.

Disability: 46.1% of people with a long term disability are inactive compared to 18.7% of those without.

Socio-economic status:  Inactivity rates are lowest (best) among those in three highest socio-economic groups (18.3%) compared to the three lowest (24.6%)

Geographical area: Data for small areas within Trafford show that inactivity rates are higher in the North compared to South of the borough.

What services are in place to reduce physical inactivity?

In the year to November 2017, over 1,000 inactive adults were referred into Trafford Leisure’s Physical Activity scheme.

  • Represents about 1 out of every 40 inactive people
  • Two thirds were women
  • More than half were aged 55+ years
  • 60% paid the £20 commitment fee and went on to complete the 8 week course

Summary and further information:



This page was last modified on 12/07/2018 14:19:00