How Much Physical Activity and Sleep Do Children and Teens Need?

Kids running

Physical Activity Recommendations


  • Children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day.
  • The activity should be age-appropriate and fun, and kids don’t need to fit it all in at once: They can add up physical activity throughout the day, in short bursts of 10 minutes or longer.
  • Children need to spend most of that hour in moderate- or vigorous-intensity aerobic activitythat is, activity that causes an increase in breathing and heart rate. Make sure children get vigorous-intensity aerobic activity on at least three days of the week.
  • Include muscle-strengthening and bone-strengthening activities on at least three days of the week.

Source: Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2008

Sleep Recommendations

13 years old: 12 to 14 hours a night

35 years old: 11 to 13 hours a night

512 years old: 10 to 11 hours a night

Adolescents: 8.5 to 9.25 hours a night

Source: National Sleep Foundation, Children and Sleep, Teens and Sleep