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Children — encouraging physical and sport activities



Conclusions — encouraging motor skills, physical and sport activities for children


  • They encourage steps to be taken so that all children (including those with disabilities) practice a physical activity in order to prevent health and developmental problems.
  • They emphasise teaching the importance of motor skills, physical and sport activities in schools and sports organisations.


  • EU countries are encouraged to develop strategies that underline and promote the importance of health-enhancing physical activities in their education, youth and health sectors.
  • When considering further political action in this context, EU countries, the European Commission and the Presidency of the Council of the EU are encouraged to follow the recommendations of the expert group on health-enhancing physical activity, which provide evidence-based facts and practical paths to follow.
  • The Commission is encouraged to improve its evidence base and then promote and support the sharing of best practices on motor skills and physical education for children throughout the EU.
  • Sports organisations are encouraged to promote sporting and physical activities which aim at combating the sedentary lifestyles of children through initiatives and partnerships with the education, youth and health sectors of EU countries.


Despite the tendency of children to be physically active, their physical activity has decreased over the past 20 years, largely due to new leisure patterns (TV, video games, internet, etc.). Child obesity has risen from 8 % in 1990 to 12 % in 2010.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation has identified insufficient physical activity as the fourth leading risk factor for disease and premature death globally. Within the EU, nearly 7 % of national health budgets are spent treating diseases related to obesity.


Council conclusions on the promotion of motor skills, physical and sport activities for children (OJ C 417, 15.12.2015, pp. 46-51)

last update 16.08.2016