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Despite the Government’s £75 million anti-obesity campaign, all attempts to get the country fit and healthy are failing*. This is the damning conclusion of a major new report published today.

The study, carried out amongst 2,000 adults by not for profit healthcare organisation Nuffield Health, reveals that a third (36%) of the nation is so lazy that they won’t run to catch a bus.

The ‘Nuffield Health Fitness Report’ also shows that Brits are now so unfit, over half (59%) won’t walk up two flights of stairs to reach their office, opting to take the lift instead.

And once at home, one in six (15% or 7.3 million) people say that if the remote control was broken, they would prefer to watch a TV programme they didn’t like rather than get up to change the channel – that’s almost as many people as tune into the Queen’s speech on Christmas day.

The extent of our laziness is also having damaging effect on our relationships.

Three-quarters (73%) of couples say they regularly do not have enough energy at the end of the day for a night of passion with their partner. Over half (58%) put this down to physical fitness.

The study exposes the UK’s most slothful cities. Top of the lazy league table is Glasgow, closely followed by Birmingham.

Lazy League Table
1. Glasgow (with 75% of people admitting they don’t get enough exercise**)
2. Birmingham (67%)
3. Southampton (67%)
4. London (66%)
5. Bristol (64%)
6. Leeds (62%)
7. Newcastle (62%)
8. Norwich (60%)
9. Manchester (59%)
10. Cardiff (42%)

Amidst growing concerns over rising obesity levels in British children, a shocking two-thirds (64%) of parents admit to always being ‘too tired’ to play with their kids. The report concludes that it is “no wonder” one in six children are classified as obese before they have even started school***.

And despite our reputation as a nation of dog-lovers, the study reveals half (52%) of the owners questioned can’t be bothered to take their dog for a walk. The finding helps explain why canine obesity is also on the rise in the UK.

Despite these alarming findings, the ‘Nuffield Health Fitness Report’ does offer some hope. Almost a third (28%) of respondents say they would be prepared to step up their fitness regime if they felt it would make them more attractive to their partner.

Dr Sarah Dauncey, the Medical Director of Nuffield Health, says: “The first step to addressing health and fitness is to have a health assessment to see where you stand. Following that, you should work out an exercise and lifestyle programme which reflects your health and fitness level. This will allow you to increase your fitness at a sustainable rate.

“People need to get fitter, not just for their own sake, but for the sake of their families, friends, and evidently their pets, too. If we don’t start to take control of this problem, a whole generation will become too unfit to perform even the most rudimentary of tasks.

“Ready-meals, remote controls and even internet shopping are all contributing to a dangerously lazy and idle Britain. The nation has fallen into a vicious circle of laziness that we must put a stop to.”

To help people address their health and fitness, Nuffield Health offers all clients of its Fitness & Wellbeing Centres across the UK a free 45-60 minute health MOT. The assessment measures body mass index, aerobic fitness, resting heart rate, blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels. Clients will receive a written report which will contribute to a personalised action plan and fitness programme.

Notes to editors

Research was carried out by Nuffield Health amongst a representative sample of 2,049 adults during May 2009.

* Information published by Brandrepublic.co.uk on 7th March 2008
** Based on the government recommendation of a minimum of 3 times a week
*** Research carried out by the Department of Health (June 2009)

The Nuffield Health Fitness & Wellbeing Centres are a brand new type of health club that offer a brilliant new approach to personal health & fitness

The Centres provide a holistic and joined up approach to managing health & wellbeing by offering an innovative combination of fitness facilities, health services and highly qualified staff never before seen in a nationwide group of health clubs.

Centres offer:
- Fantastic fitness facilities (gym equipment, swimming pool, sauna, spa, steam)
- Free 45-60 minute health assessment
- Senior Wellbeing Advisors - a new group of highly qualified fitness & wellbeing professionals, many of whom have a sports science background, available to deliver support, advice and tailored exercise programmes
- Accredited Nuffield physiotherapists - available to personalise an action plan for prevention, intervention and rehabilitation of injuries;
- Nutritional advice - nutritional guidance and dietary analysis from Senior Wellbeing Advisors to help clients make the right choices for healthy living;
- Relaxation Zones - offering soothing and nourishing treatments and therapies;
- Health workshops and seminars to keep people informed and up-to-date about the best ways to improve and maintain their wellbeing.

Nuffield Health is the UK’s largest healthcare charity.

We help people to get healthy and stay healthy, to identify and manage their individual health risks, and we provide sophisticated diagnosis and treatment when problems occur

We are independent of government and have no shareholders so we can plan for the long-term, reinvesting all financial surplus for the benefit of customers

Nuffield Health purchased Cannons Health & Fitness in November 2007