Being active

Being Active - Making exercise more convenient

Feel like you have no time to exercise? Remember, every minute of activity counts. Consider trying some of these tips:

• Keep a pair of walking shoes at work
• Keep clothes you need for a workout in your car
• Keep hand weights near your television or phone

When an opportunity for exercise comes along you’ll be ready.

Start Walking

When you start walking with a pedometer, go through your normal daily routines and wear the pedometer, so that it keeps track of your steps for one full week. If you would like to increase your walking start by adding only 200 steps per day for the first week, and then add another 200 steps after that, and then add another 200 steps and so on.

If walking is your main activity for long-term healthy physical activity, then walking 10,000 steps a day is recommended.


Walking is a wonderful way to spend time with family and friends, and to be re-connected to the land.

Walking will also:

• Increase your energy level

• Enhance your mental well-being

• Help you relax and sleep better

• Help you reduce your body fat and tone your muscles

• Increase bone density, thereby helping to prevent osteoporosis

• Help increase flexibility and co-ordination

Pedometer - Distance Counter

A pedometer is a gadget that you wear on your belt to record the number of steps you take. To check the pedometer reading, press the reset button ensuring that the screen reads all zeros. Take approximately 20 steps with the pedometer placed upright on your hipbone. If the pedometer does not read 19-21 steps during this time, try placing the pedometer in a slightly different position on your hip and re-test again. 

Advantages of a pedometer

• Provides immediate feedback on the number of steps taken in any given day or period of time

• Makes it possible to track activity

• Assists to set and attain healthy physical activity goals

• The pedometer is small and lightweight and can be worn

First Nations Act Now Initiative

In support of the First Nations Act Now Initiative and the Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative, initiate, coordinate and monitor projects and activities at the regional level related to helping First Nations improve their health through regular physical activity. Efforts to focus on population health promotion and the primary and secondary prevention of type 2 diabetes by increasing levels of physical activity in the target populations.

Beginner’s Fitness Program

This beginner fitness program provides you with an easy tool to attain part of your health goals. This program is for adults, and can be performed in the home or at a centre. This online program booklet is part of package that program booklet with introduction, physical assessment readiness questionnaire, booklet that demonstrates the exercises, and travel cards.

Beginer Workout Program Introduction | pdf download |

Beginner Exercise Cards | pdf download |

Beginners Home workout form | pdf download |

Fitness Workout travel cards | pdf download |

All information provided in these booklets is for informational purposes only. The exercises and activities presented in these booklets may not be appropriate depending on your age and physical condition. First Nations Health Authority recommends that you consult your physician prior to engaging in any exercises or activities presented in these booklets. First Nations Health Authorityassumes no liability for persons who undertake physical activity.  If you are between the ages of 15 and 69, it is recommended that you start by completing the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire (PAR-Q) reproduced in the accompanying materials.

Physical Activity Promotion & Gang Prevention Comic Book: “Path of the Warrior”

We would like to take this opportunity to introduce the Comic Book called the · “Path of the Warrior”. The comic book is a story on physical activity, with a sub-theme of gang prevention. The story was written by, Richard Van Camp, and illustrated by Steve Sanderson, both First Nations. The story was tested with youth and physical activity and gang prevention specialists, for authentic storylines, characters and dialogue by the Healthy Aboriginal Network. Perhaps the most redeeming feedback came from Aboriginal youth gang members incarcerated at the Manitoba Youth Centre, who loved the comic book and only asked for dialogue changes.

The First Nations Health Council, by implementing the ten-year Tripartite First Nations Health Plan, works with BC’s 203 First Nations communities to close the health gap with other British Columbians. The comic book is a great step to illustrate an alternative way to belong in a community and also be physically active. Encouraging physical activity is an important initiative of the Health Plan. As shown in this comic book, getting active at community centre’s can change youth’s life!

The comic book could be a great tool for community programs and class focused discussions. Please let us know how many books your band office, community or school would like delivered for distribution. The target age group is for 10 to 18 year olds.

Download in PDF format: Comic Book Guide for Instructors.

Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative Resource

The new Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative resource guide contains information on support for traditional wellness, nutrition, and physical activity.  It offers knowledge, community support, and capacity building tools that preserve and cultivate traditional practices and medicines. Encompassing and embracing traditional wellness brings a holistic approach to the health and wellness of BC First Nations.  For reliable nutrition information, program ideas, and even potential funding sources the guide will start you in the right direction.  The physical activity resources provide support, outreach, coaching, training for capacity building events, and opportunities to support regular physical activity to help First Nations adopt and sustain healthy, active lifestyles.  Some of these resources have components that are especially designed for Aboriginal people, while others give us a great place to start developing something that will really work in our community.

ADI Resources.pdf

Aboriginal Sports, Recreation, and Physical Activity Partners Council and the Five Pillars

This document outlines an operational strategy that responds to the needs of First Nations, Métis, and off-reserve Aboriginal people with respect to improving health outcomes through sport, recreation and physical activity.  Through the Transformative Change Accord: First Nations Health Plan, the Tripartite First Nations Health Plan; and the Métis Relationship Accord, the improvement of health outcomes has been determined, in part, by increasing levels of physical activity in First Nations, Métis, and off-reserve Aboriginal communities.

ASRPA 5 Pillars | pdf download |

Aboriginal Youth Sports, Recreation, and Physical Activity Research Paper

Hanna, R. (2009). “Promoting, Developing, and Sustaining Sports, Recreation, and Physical Activity in British Columbia for Aboriginal Youth”.  Document created for First Nations Health Society.
The opportunities to participate in sports, recreation and physical activity have a significant positive impact on the physical health, and mental and emotional wellness of Aboriginal youth in British Columbia. | pdf download |

Resources for BC First Nation Communities

The following resources provide support, outreach, coaching, training or capacity building events and opportunities to help create community social and physical environments that are supportive of regular physical activity; and to increase knowledge and develop personal skills to enable First Nations to adopt and sustain healthy, active lifestyles. 

First Nations Physical Activity Resources


Aboriginal Sport Circle of Canada
Roundpoint Building
RR 3
Akwesasne Mohawk Territory
Cornwall Island, ON
K6H 5R7
Tel (613) 938-1176
Fax (613) 938-9181
Satellite Office
275 MacLaren Street
Ottawa, ON
K2P 0L9
Tel (613) 236-9624
Information on athlete support, coach development, programs, and camps.

Provincial Offices

Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council
551 Chatham Street
Victoria, BC
V8T 1E1
PH: (250) 388-5522
Fax: (250) 388-5502
Toll-Free: 1-800-990-2432
Aboriginal Coaches Manual, programs, camps, and youth council.

  • First Nations Clubs, Events, Leagues, and Programs

First Nations Athletes and Reading
Bridge Through Sport Program
UBC Community Affairs
Ryanne James
Tel: 604.822.4755
Cell: 604-317-7842

First Nations Basketball
All-Native Basketball Tournament
Prince Rupert, BC

First Nations Canoeing
Seabird Festival
War canoe races
All Native Soccer Tournament
All Native Ball Hockey
Seabird Island Indian Band
2895 Chowat Road,
Agassiz, British Columbia V0M 1A0
Phone: 604-796-2177
Fax: 604-796-3729

First Nations Golf
Musqueam Golf Course and Learning Academy
3904 West 51 Ave.
Vancouver, BC V6N 3W1
Phone: 604-266-2334
Fax: 604-266-2334

Nk’Mip Canyon Golf Course
37041-71st St., PO Box 1949,
Oliver, BC V0H 1T0
Toll-free: 1-800-656-5755
Phone: (250) 498-2880

Skaha Meadows Golf Course
Mail: # 113 - 437 Martin Street
Box # 202
Penticton, British Columbia, V2A 5L1
Phone: 250-492-7274

Sonora Dunes Golf Course
1300 Rancher Creek Road
Osoyoos, BC V0H 1V6
Phone: 250-495-4653

Tsawwassen Golf & Country Club
1595 - 52nd Street,
British Columbia
V4M 2Z4
Phone: 604-943-2288
Fax: 604-943-6117
Pro Shop: 604-943-3911

First Nations Hockey
Seabird Festival
War canoe races
All Native Soccer Tournament
All Native Ball Hockey
Seabird Island Indian Band
2895 Chowat Road,
Agassiz, British Columbia V0M 1A0
Phone: 604-796-2177
Fax: 604-796-3729

First Nations Running
Honour Your Health Challenge

UBC Team - Aboriginal Runners, Cyclists, and Hikers

First Nations Snowboarding
First Nation Snowboard Team
Aaron Marchant
FNST Founder / Operations Manager
Direct: 604-982-8632
Fax: 604-980-4523
Toll Free: 1-877-628-2288

First Nations Soccer
Namgis First Nation Soccer Tournament
National Aboriginal Day June Sports
Father’s Day (Annual)
Alert Bay, B.C.
Phone: 250-974-5556

Seabird Festival
War canoe races
All Native Soccer Tournament
All Native Ball Hockey
Seabird Island Indian Band
2895 Chowat Road,
Agassiz, British Columbia V0M 1A0
Phone: 604-796-2177
Fax: 604-796-3729

UBC and Musqueam Soccer Tournament
For tournament details:
UBC Community Affairs
Ryanne James
Tel: 604-822-4755
Cell: 604-317-7842

First Nations Walking
Honour Your Health Challenge

Community Sports and Recreation Programs

BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres
#200 - 506 Fort Street
Victoria BC V8W 1E6
Phone: (250) 388-5522
Fax: (250) 388-5502
There are 24 Aboriginal B.C. Friendship Centres in B.C. listed below and each centre’s contact information can be found on the following website:

Programs with First Nations Involvement and Valuable Resources

2010 Legacies Now
Aboriginal Sport Development
Spirit of BC Week

Action Schools BC, utilized in over 70 BC First Nation Schools

Healthy Families BC
Tips for Family, Youth, Adults, Pregnancy, Physically Challenged, and Seniors

Arthritis Society, Joints in Motion
British Columbia and Yukon Division Office
#200 - 1645 West 7th Avenue
Vancouver, BC. V6J 1S4
Phone: 604-714-5550
Fax: 604-714-5555
Vancouver Island: Trish Duncan
Email: or 250-519-4001
Vancouver and Lower Mainland inquires, please contact: Emily Shandruk
Email: or 604-714-5569
Toll free: 1-866-414-7766

BC Association of Kinesiologist, Find a Kinesiologist in your Area
102 - 211 Columbia Street
Vancouver BC V6A 2R5
Phone: 604.601.5100
Fax: 604.681.4545

BC Healthy Communities
Library, Funding, Toolkits, and other resources
Phone: 250-356-0892
Toll free: 1-888-356-0892

BC Health Living Alliance
Fifteen initiatives implemented by members of the alliance under four major strategies: Physical Activity, Healthy Eating, Tobacco Reduction, Community Capacity.

BC Recreation and Parks Association (BCRPA)
#101 - 4664 Lougheed Hwy.
Burnaby, BC V5C 5T5
Phone: 604-629-0965
Fax: 604-629-2651

BC Healthy Living Alliance initiatives:

Walk BC, Lindsay Richardson, Coordinator

Everybody Active

Community Based Awareness Initiative

Built Environment and Active Transportation Initiative

Fitness Programs

Aquatic, aerobics, and pilates fitness, weight training and personal training, and osteofit

Fitness Leader Registration Courses (incl. Distance), Workshops, Conferences, and Events

Recreation and Parks

Active Communities
The initiative mobilizes and collaborates with communities, local governments, First Nations and partner organizations to promote healthy lifestyle choices, increase accessibility to physical activities and build supportive community environments.  There are currently over 26 Aboriginal communities registered.

Other Active Communities resources:
Active Workplace, Workbooks
Active Aging, Literature review
Active Transportation, Action plan

High Five, Quality assurance for programs aimed at children 6-12. The Aboriginal Supplement can be found at:

Everybody Gets to Play, economic support

Playground Safety Course

Walking Programs, pedometer handbooks, and guides

Women in Leadership

Youth Workers

Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity
N202 - 801 King Edward Avenue
Ottawa, ON, Canada
K1N 6N5
Phone: 613-562-5667
Fax: 613-562-5668

Mothers in Motion   
Physical Activity for Women aged 55 to 70   
Active and Free of tobacco   
Girls at Play

Active Strategy   
On the Move

Canadian Fitness and Lifestyle Research Institute
201-185 Somerset Street West
Ottawa, Ontario K2P 0J2
Contact:  Christine Cameron

Canadian Sport For Life, Useful information on Physical Literacy.

The Coaches Association of BC

Get Active Now® Canada, enabling individuals with disabilities
213-120 Ottawa Street North
Kitchener, Ontario N2H 3K5
Fax: (519) 568-8924
Phone: 1-800-311-9565

Mr. Robin Shantz, BCRPA Communications Coordinator
101 – 4664 Lougheed Hwy
Burnaby , BC V5C 5T5
Phone: 604-629-0965 ext. 42
Fax: 604-624-2651
Email: or

Hearts in Motion™ Walking Club – A program encouraging people to participate in
regular physical activity by walking.
Heart and Stroke Foundation of BC & Yukon
Toll Free: 1-888-473-4636 ext. 364

Healthy Hearts Society
Events, brochures, and promotion
260 - 1401 West 8th Avenue
Vancouver, BC V6H 1C9
Phone: 604-742-1772
Toll Free: 888-742-1772
Fax: 604-742-1773

Heart and Stroke Foundation
Tips to become physically active
Toll Free: 1-888-473-4636

Kid Sport, Grants for 6-18 years old
Contact: Pete Quevillon
Phone: 604-333-3430

ProMOTION Plus, Programs and Services, Awards, Grants, and Library
227 – 3820 Cessna Drive
Richmond, BC V7B 0A2
Phone: 604-333-3475
Toll Free: 1-877-55-PROMO
Fax: 604-333-3450

Social Planning and Research Council of British Columbia
Everybody’s Welcome, Understanding Social Inclusion
201 - 221 East 10th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, Canada V5T 4V3
Contact: Jim Sands
Phone: (604) 718-7733
Fax: (604) 736-8697

Sports BC, 53 BC Sport organizations and 15 partner sport organizations

Sport Med BC
1325 Keith Road
North Vancouver, BC V7J 1J3
General Enquiries: (604) 903-3880
SportMed RunWalk Clinics: (604) 903-3883
SportMed Safety: (604) 903-3884
SportMed Nutrition: (604) 903-3888
SportMed Performance (604) 903-3881
Toll Free in BC: 1-888-755-3375
Fax: (604) 929-3877
Nordic Walking
Run Walk Programs


Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative

Active Living at Work

Body Mass Index, Health Canada

Canada’s Physical Activity Guides, no charge
Order by phone: 1-888-334-9769
Canadian Physical Activity Guide for Older Adults
Canadian Physical Activity Guide for Children
Canadian Physical Activity Guide for Youth

Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology
Fitness Publications

Diabetes Medicine Bag

Diabetes: Physically Active

Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire with medical examination for Pregnancy

Social Planning and Research Council of British Columbia
Building Bridge Together, A workbook for series of intercultural dialogue between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples
201 - 221 East 10th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, Canada V5T 4V3
Contact: Jim Sands
Phone: (604) 718-7733
Fax: (604) 736-8697

SportMed BC Library