Can health-care costs be reduced by increasing the overall level of physical activity? What part does heredity play in physical fitness? How does exercise affect the immune system? What is the relationship between physical activity and hypertension? The search for answers to these and other questions brought exercise scientists and health-policy-makers together in Toronto, Canada, in May 1992 for the Second International Consensus Symposium on Physical Activity, Fitness and Health. The findings from this symposium are available in this volume, which contains the full proceedings, during which nearly 100 scholars and practitioners held discussions on 63 topics in the sport and exercise sciences. For each topic, the contributors to this book have analyzed and summarized the supporting papers that were presented in Toronto. In addition to the proceedings, a consensus statement is included which reflects the contributors' conclusions based on two decades of research on health, fitness and physical activity.
More specifically, the book describes the relationship between health, regular physical activity and physical fitness; examines the effects of growth, gender, ageing and social environments on health and fitness; quantifies the amount of habitual physical activity necessary for given physical and mental-health effects; identifies the quality and extent of research supporting the conclusions reached for each topic addressed; and identifies areas for future research.