The Ability Toolkit – A Resource for Parents of Children and Youth with a Disability

The Guidelines

The Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth outline the amounts of physical activity, sedentary behaviour, and sleep that children and youth who are 5-17 years old should get in a 24-hour day. The guidelines are based on the latest research evidence. They were developed by scientific experts from around the world.


The Point in question

The guidelines are based on research involving able-bodied and typically developing youth. More research is needed before guidelines specific to children and youth with a disability are developed. With some additional information, however, the current guidelines can be used to help children and youth with a disability experience the health benefits of limiting sedentary time and getting enough physical activity and sleep.


The purpose

The Ability Toolkit was developed to help parents and guardians support their child or teen with a disability meet the Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth. The Ability Toolkit provides information relevant to adapting the guidelines to the unique movement abilities of children or teenagers with any type of disability. Some information may be especially useful for parents and guardians of children and teens with a physical disability.


Adapt it

Think about what aspects of the guidelines and The Ability Toolkit make sense for you and your child or teen. If needed, talk to a health care professional for additional suggestions about what types and amounts of activities are right for your child or teen. A health professional might include a doctor, a physiotherapist, a nurse practitioner, an occupational therapist or a qualified exercise professional.


Read The Ability Toolkit here

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The Canadian Physiotherapy Association (CPA) represents physiotherapists, physiotherapist assistants and physiotherapist students across Canada. CPA members are rehabilitation professionals dedicated to the health, mobility and fitness of Canadians.

Physiotherapists are primary health care professionals who combine their in-depth knowledge of the body and how it works with specialized hands-on clinical skills to assess, diagnose and treat symptoms of illness, injury or disability.

More than 20,000 registered physiotherapists work in Canada, in private clinics, general and rehabilitation hospitals, community health centres, residential care and assisted-living facilities, home visit agencies, workplaces, and schools.

The CPA presents its educational references as a public service and for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The opinions expressed do not necessarily represent the opinions of the CPA membership.