Professor Steven Blair speaks on high risk of physical inactivity Mon 29 October 2012 Graeme Lynch Chair, Premier's Physical Activity Council Not doing enough physical activity and may be the biggest public health problem of the 21st century, according to an international expert on exercise science who is visiting Tasmania this week. Professor Steven Blair from the University of South Carolina is in Hobart today to host a series of public presentations on the important topic of physical activity. Graeme Lynch, Chair of the Premier's Physical Activity Council, welcomed Professor Blair who is recognised as the leading exercise science researcher across the globe. "I am delighted to welcome the expertise of Professor Blair to Hobart following a series of successful presentations held in Launceston last week," said Mr Lynch. "His work focuses on the associations between lifestyle and health, with a specific emphasis on exercise, physical fitness, body composition, and chronic disease. "Professor Blair is an award-winning researcher and we are fortunate to have someone of his high calibre in Tasmania. "Physical activity is a crucially important issue in Tasmania and we need to raise awareness of this. "Despite the many well-known benefits of physical activity, 7 out of 10 Tasmanian adults do not meet the National Physical Activity Guidelines of 30 minutes of moderate physical activity on at least five days of the week." Mr Lynch indicated that he shared the concerns of Professor Blair that physical activity is undervalued and underappreciated. "The evidence supports Professor Blair's conclusion that physical inactivity is one of the most important public health problems of the 21st Century, and may even be the most important." Despite the poor health outcomes physical inactivity produces, many of the most important influences on the population's health do not fall within the direct control of the health sector. "The most effective interventions to increase physical activity levels are those that combine multiple strategies at multiple levels across all sectors. "The Premier's Physical Activity Council provides a coordinated, cross sector and collaborative response to increasing and improving opportunities for physical activity in Tasmania. "We need increased support and action from all sectors and levels of the community if more Tasmanians are to experience and enjoy the many benefits of regular physical activity," Mr Lynch said.