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Activity refers to the extent to which an individual or a group of people is physically or mentally engaged. The significance of activity can vary in different contexts, such as in sports, leisure, work, or education. Regular activity is important for physical and mental health and promotes well-being. This glossary entry explains various aspects of activity, its importance and impact on health, as well as ways to increase activity.

Activity: Definition and Significance

Activity is a term that refers to the extent of physical or mental involvement of a person or a group of people. Over time, the meaning of activity has evolved in various contexts, such as in the field of health and fitness, education, or in social and professional life.

Physical Activity

Physical activity refers to all body movements that are produced by the contraction of muscles and the consumption of energy. This includes everyday activities such as walking, running, swimming, cycling, dancing, strength training, and yoga. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an adult should engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous physical activity per week to maintain a healthy lifestyle and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

Mental Activity

Mental activity refers to the cognitive involvement of a person, such as learning, thinking, problem-solving, communicating, and decision-making. Mental activities can be promoted through reading, writing, playing, discussions, art, and music, or through targeted exercises to improve cognitive abilities. Regular mental activity can help preserve memory, improve concentration, and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases like dementia.

Activity and Health

Regular activity, both physical and mental, is important for health and well-being. An active lifestyle can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and cancer. Furthermore, it can promote mental health by alleviating stress, anxiety, and depression, and improving self-esteem and quality of life.

Activity in Social and Professional Settings

Activity also plays an important role in people's social and professional lives. Participation in communal activities such as sports, cultural events, or volunteer work can promote a sense of belonging and social support, thus improving well-being. In the professional context, activity can contribute to job satisfaction and personal and professional development.

Increasing Activity

There are various ways to increase activity in everyday life:

  • Set realistic goals: Start with small, achievable goals and gradually increase them.
  • Plan regular activities: Integrate activities into your daily routine, e.g., by going for a walk at a set time each day or signing up for a weekly sports class.
  • Find activities that you enjoy: Choose activities that match your interests and abilities to maintain motivation.
  • Seek social support: Share your activity goals with family and friends or join a group or club to be active together.
  • Vary your activities: Combine different types of activities to avoid boredom and promote different aspects of your fitness.


Activity is a versatile term that encompasses both the physical and mental involvement of a person or a group of people. Regular activity is important for physical and mental health, social and professional well-being, and quality of life. By setting realistic goals, planning regular activities, and choosing activities that suit individual interests and abilities, people can increase their activity and lead a healthier lifestyle.