Web Content Viewer (JSR 286) - Healthy Weight


Siblings playing video games while sitting on the sofaMany children spend too much time watching TV, playing video and computer games, and sitting in front of computers for entertainment.

Children, aged 5 – 12 years, and young people, aged 13 – 17 years, should spend no more than two hours a day playing computer games, surfing the internet, watching TV or playing video games, for recreation and entertainment. This does not include time spent using computers and other screen-based activity for homework and study.4


Children who spend a lot of time in front of screens are more likely to be overweight than those who don’t.4 Research has shown that, by limiting screen time used for recreation, kids are more likely to play active games and to eat a healthy diet. Remember: that the earlier in life healthy habits are developed, the more likely they are to continue throughout life. So turn the screens off more often.

Try these tips to limit your child’s use of electronic media for entertainment to less than two hours per day:

  • Allocate specific time periods for electronic media use, preferably not during daylight hours when children can be active outside.
  • Do not offer electronic media as a reward for good behaviour.
  • Turn off the TV – especially during meal times and when a program finishes!
  • Do not allow a television or computer in children’s bedrooms where usage can’t be monitored.
  • Store portable electronic devices, such as tablets, phones and computer games, out of sight when they are not in use.
  • Set a good example – reduce your electronic media use for entertainment.

[4] Australia’s Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines Children (5-12 years), Young People (13-17 years) and Adults (18-64 years).  Department of Health 2013.