NICE Guidelines on physical activity and the environment

This new NICE guidance on physical activity and the environment is an evidence-based approach to improving health and wellbeing through improved activity levels. The built environment, including roads and pavements, can play an important part in encouraging children, young people, their families and carers to be physically active.

The guidelines reflect the need to support active travel for children and young people, including safe routes to school, promoting safe and welcoming open public spaces, improving footways and pedestrian crossings, and introducing measures to reduce vehicle speed.

The guidance includes recommendations on

  • strategies, policies and plans to increase physical activity in the local environment
  • active travel
  • public open spaces
  • buildings
  • schools

NICE guidance will be important for local authorities, others responsible for open spaces, housing and built environment specialists, public transport planners and providers, road safety teams and members of the public.         

More information

  • NICE Guidance (NG90), Physical activity and the environment (March 2018) is available to download at:
  • You can find a link on the homepage to an interactive flowchart on physical activity
  • Related NICE Guidance on Physical activity: walking and cycling (PH 41 – 2012, reviewed 2016), can be found at:
Updated April 2018