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August 2019

Sign up to activity charter to lead by example

The Royal College of GPs and Sport England have teamed up to launch the very first Active Practice Charter to inspire GP practices to increase activity and reduce sedentary behaviour in their patients and staff.

The Charter could benefit the approximately 8,000 GP practices in the UK, by raising awareness of the simple changes that can be made to improve the physical and mental wellbeing of patients and staff, such as signposting to local exercise classes or partnering with a nearby activity provider.

The Active Practice Charter builds on an existing initiative where GP practices have been encouraged to develop closer links with their local parkrun to become certified ‘parkrun practices.’

The Charter outlines the key principles of what it means for a practice to be ‘active’, and the steps GPs and their teams can take to get there.

To become an ‘Active Practice’ and receive a certificate recognising their status, surgeries will need to demonstrate that they have taken a number of steps, including:

  • Increasing physical activity in patients and staff
  • Reducing sedentary behaviour in patients and staff
  • Partnering with a local physical activity provider to support the practice to get more people active

Dr Andrew Boyd, RCGP Clinical Champion for Physical Activity and Lifestyle said: ‘By making small changes in our own workplace – using standing desks, encouraging active transport for staff, and partnering with local physical activity providers, for example – we can demonstrate to patients that being more active is good for everyone’s physical and mental health.’

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