Latest News

Back to Latest News back


ESSA launch statement on the role of physical activity in the management of obesity in adults

ESSA launch statement on the role of physical activity in the management of obesity in adults
September 15, 2021

Exercise and Sports Science Australia have today launched their latest position statement on physical activity in the management of obesity in adults, published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport (JSAMS). The position statement deals with the key aspects of exercise in weight and adiposity (obesity) loss but also addresses the prevention of initial weight gain and the maintenance of weight loss.

Obesity is defined as excessive body fat that increases your risk of other health problems. A person with a body mass index (BMI) above 30 is considered as having obesity. It’s estimated that 31% of Australians aged 18 and over have obesity.

As well as affecting quality of life, obesity is a major risk factor for chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, back pain and some cancers. As the level of excess weight increases, so does the risk of developing these conditions.

This latest Exercise and Sports Science Australia (ESSA) position statement, developed by a group of Australian researchers and clinicians, examines the evidence for physical activity in weight and adiposity loss, prevention of weight and adiposity gain, and in weight regain in adults, and provides guidance on implications for exercise practitioners.

“Exercise practitioners see many clients with overweight or obesity, either as the chief complaint or a comorbidity. Yet, there are lot of misconceptions and misinformation about physical activity and obesity,” explains Associate Professor Nathan Johnson, lead author on this position statement based at the Faculty of Medicine and Health, and the Boden Collaboration for Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise and Eating Disorders, University of Sydney.

“This statement is important because it supports best evidence-based practice to effectively help adults with weight management problems.”

Professor Tim Gill, the senior author on this position statement who is also based at the Boden Collaboration for Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise and Eating Disorders, University of Sydney adds “A distinctive feature of these recommendations is the recognition that improving health in people with overweight or obesity can be achieved by addressing the different elements of overweight and obesity that go beyond a focus on total weight loss.”

During consultations for weight management, exercise practitioners, such as Accredited Exercise Physiologists, should advise that metabolic and cardiovascular health benefits can be achieved with physical activity at any weight, and irrespective of weight change.

Click here to access the article “Physical activity in the management of obesity in adults: A position statement from Exercise and Sport Science Australia”.

To find an Accredited Exercise Physiologist near you, visit ESSA’s online directory.

Related Articles

7th September 2021 - ESSA marks Women’s Health Week by encouraging women to exercise for the right reasons

15th June 2021 - ESSA marks Men’s Health Week with launch of free eBook

20th May 2021 - ESSA reminds Australians that exercise can change lives

6th May 2021 - Fitness Australia, ESSA and SMA join forces to launch pre-exercise screening system specifically for young people

7th April 2021 - ESSA marks World Health Day by highlighting that exercise is for everyone

8th March 2021 - ESSA celebrates female leaders in the exercise and sports science industry

10th February 2021 - ESSA highlights the benefits of a virtual workout buddy

2nd February 2021 - ESSA celebrates 30th anniversary of supporting health through exercise

27th January 2021 - ESSA encourages parents to introduce positive exercise habits outside of school activities

17th November 2020 - ESSA partners with 10,000 Steps to encourage participation in the After Work Walk campaign

3rd November 2020 - ESSA releases free ebook promoting physical activity benefits for older adults

13th August 2020 - ESSA releases free eBook promoting physical activity benefits for Australian children

16th June 2020 - ESSA highlights the importance of movement for men’s mental health

10th June 2020 - ESSA urges a considered return to the gym

19th May 2020 - ESSA highlights the importance of movement this Exercise Right Week

23rd March 2020 - ESSA launches campaign promoting physical activity during COVID-19

3rd September 2019 - ESSA highlights the power of exercise this Women’s Health Week

11th June 2019 - ESSA highlights the importance of movement this Men’s Health Week

10th May 2019 - ESSA focuses on Active Ageing during Exercise Right Week 2019

5th February 2019 - ESSA’s Exercise Right secures Active Ageing program funding

27th January 2019 - ESSA urges not to give up on resolutions to get active

29th November 2018 - ESSA highlights the key role of physical activity in breaking down disability barriers

28th September 2017 - ESSA highlights how physical activity is beneficial for all ages

Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.


supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

The Pool Enclosure Company

Now TPEC Pool Enclosures - see

read more

Aquatics / Design / Recreation / Venues



A leading designer and manufacturer of innovative waterslides and attractions, Australian Waterslides and Leisure (AWL) is also able to advise clients in the areas of concept and design, feasibility…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Waterparks



Technogym is the leading company in the Wellness and Fitness field all over the world. With 2,200 employees, 14 branches in Europe, U.S., South America, Asia  and Australia, Technogym exports its…

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness


TJS Services

TJS Services is a leading national facility services provider. We deliver quality cleaning, maintenance, construction and facility management services to over 1,500 sites Australia wide.  Our…

read more

Hospitality / Retail / Venues


Pico Play

Pico Play is a global leader in the planning, design, development and construction of world-class themed attractions and entertainment that deliver extraordinary and memorable experiences to millions…

read more

Attractions / Consultants / Design / Recreation / Tourism


Hydrocare Pool Services

Hydrocare Pool Services Pty Ltd offer 30 years of experience in aquatic industry features, products and water treatment. Hydrocare Pools has undertaken water treatment for aquatic centres and…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Recreation / Technology



Track. Engage. Retain GreeneDesk is a suite of cloud based software solutions helping health clubs, leisure centres and swim schools to effectively track progression, improve customer engagement and…

read more

Aquatics / Billing / Education / Fitness / Technology



Developed in Europe, this innovative system offers a safety management solution for swimming pools that checks individual swimmers via their wristband - monitoring their depth and time. Sensors…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Safety / Technology / Waterparks


get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business