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We’re failing to help kids be physically active

29 August 2017
Riding a bike is a healthy rite of passage

A new low in children’s bicycle sales signals a failure to help children be physically active, says University of Sydney health expert, Professor Chris Rissel.

Commenting on new data released today revealing a 22 per cent decline in sales of children’s bicycles in the decade to 2017, Professor Rissel said: “We're failing our children by not encouraging them to be physically active and providing them with basic support like a bicycle.

"Most parents enjoyed riding a bicycle when they were a child, but this is increasingly being denied to children today. Learning to ride a bicycle should be a rite of passage for children, that gives them a significant transport choice throughout their lives."

National bicycle sales data published annually by Bicycle Industries Australia can be accessed here.

Most parents enjoyed riding a bicycle when they were a child, but this is increasingly being denied to children today.
Professor Chris Rissel, University of Sydney

Fast facts

  • Sales of children’s bicycles fell 22 per cent in the decade to 2017, from 492,000 units in 2007-08 to 382,000 units in 2016-17.
  • Seventy-one per cent of children and 92 per cent of young people do not meet the recommended guidelines for physical activity in Australia.
  • 600,000 Australian children are inactive and only 7 per cent get the recommended one hour per day of exercise.

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