10 Simple Ways to Increase Daily Physical Activity


In today's sedentary lifestyle, it's more important than ever to find ways to incorporate physical activity into our daily routines. Regular exercise not only helps maintain a healthy weight but also reduces the risk of chronic diseases, improves mental health, and boosts overall well-being. However, with busy schedules and limited time, dedicating hours to structured workouts can be challenging. The good news is that increasing daily physical activity doesn't have to be complicated or time-consuming. By making small changes and adopting simple habits, you can easily boost your activity levels and reap the benefits of a more active lifestyle.

1. Take the Stairs

One of the easiest ways to increase physical activity is to choose the stairs over the elevator or escalator whenever possible. Climbing stairs engages multiple muscle groups, increases heart rate, and burns calories. Start by taking the stairs for one or two flights and gradually increase as your fitness improves. If you work in a multi-story building, consider taking the stairs for at least part of your journey to and from the office.

2. Park Further Away

When running errands or commuting to work, opt to park your car a bit further from your destination. This simple habit adds extra steps to your day and provides an opportunity for a short walk. Over time, these additional steps can contribute significantly to your overall physical activity levels. If you use public transportation, consider getting off a stop earlier and walking the rest of the way.

3. Walk or Bike for Short Trips

For short trips within your neighborhood or nearby areas, consider walking or cycling instead of driving. Not only does this increase your physical activity, but it also reduces your carbon footprint and saves on fuel costs. Invest in a comfortable pair of walking shoes or a reliable bicycle to make these active commutes more enjoyable.

4. Stand Up and Move During TV Commercial Breaks

If you enjoy watching television, make the most of commercial breaks by standing up and moving around. Use this time to do some light stretching, march in place, or perform a few bodyweight exercises like squats or lunges. These short bursts of activity can add up over the course of a day and help counteract the negative effects of prolonged sitting [1].

5. Take Active Breaks at Work

Sitting for long periods at work can lead to a sedentary lifestyle and associated health risks. Combat this by taking active breaks throughout the day. Set a reminder to stand up and stretch every hour, or take a short walk during your lunch break. If possible, consider using a standing desk or a treadmill desk to incorporate more movement into your workday [2].

6. Do Household Chores

Household chores like vacuuming, mopping, and gardening are excellent ways to increase physical activity while keeping your living space tidy. Engage in these activities with enthusiasm, focusing on using proper form and maintaining a brisk pace. Not only will you burn calories, but you'll also end up with a clean and well-maintained home.

7. Play with Your Kids or Pets

If you have children or pets, engage in active play with them regularly. Run around the backyard, play catch, or have a dance party in the living room. Not only will this increase your physical activity, but it also provides valuable bonding time and sets a positive example for your children. Dogs, in particular, need daily walks, which can be a great way to ensure you get some exercise too.

8. Take Advantage of Waiting Time

We often spend a significant amount of time waiting, whether it's in line at the grocery store, at the doctor's office, or for public transportation. Use this waiting time to incorporate some physical activity. Perform calf raises while standing in line, do some gentle stretches, or pace around the waiting area. These small movements can add up over the course of the day.

9. Join a Recreational Sports League

Joining a recreational sports league not only provides regular opportunities for physical activity but also offers a social aspect that can make exercise more enjoyable. Choose a sport you enjoy, whether it's soccer, basketball, volleyball, or softball, and sign up for a local league. Participating in weekly games and practices can significantly contribute to your overall activity levels while fostering a sense of camaraderie and friendly competition.

10. Make it a Family Affair

Encourage your family members to join you in increasing daily physical activity. Plan active outings like hiking, biking, or swimming together on weekends. Set up a family challenge to see who can take the most steps each day or week, using fitness trackers or smartphone apps to monitor progress. By making physical activity a family priority, you create a supportive environment that promotes healthy habits for everyone.


Incorporating more physical activity into your daily life doesn't have to be a daunting task. By making simple choices like taking the stairs, walking for short trips, and engaging in active breaks, you can easily increase your movement throughout the day. Remember, every little bit counts, and the cumulative effect of these small changes can lead to significant improvements in your health and well-being over time. Start implementing these tips today and enjoy the benefits of a more active lifestyle.


  1. Owen, N., Healy, G. N., Matthews, C. E., & Dunstan, D. W. (2010). Too much sitting: the population health science of sedentary behavior. Exercise and sport sciences reviews, 38(3), 105–113.
  2. Torbeyns, T., Bailey, S., Bos, I., & Meeusen, R. (2014). Active Workstations to Fight Sedentary Behaviour. Sports medicine (Auckland, N.Z.), 44(9), 1261–1273.