Physical activity and sedentary behaviour in Bangladesh: a systematic scoping review

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A paper, titled “Physical activity and sedentary behaviour in Bangladesh: a systematic scoping review”, will be published in the Public Health journal in February 2020. The full –text article is available online since December 9, 2019 and can be found here. Open access.

Study summary


Lack of physical activity (PA) contributes to increasing prevalence of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) globally. However, little is known about PA and sedentary behaviour (SB) among populations in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). This systematic review examined prevalence of PA and SB in Bangladesh.

Study design

Systematic review of the literature.


A systematic electronic search in eight databases and a manual search of retrieved articles’ references were conducted. Original research conducted in Bangladesh with PA- and/or SB-related outcome(s) were included.


Out of 1,162 retrieved titles, 33 articles (32 cross-sectional and one case–control study) met the inclusion criteria. Twenty-nine studies were with healthy populations: adults (n = 19); children and adolescents (n = 7); and children, adolescents and adults (n = 3). Five studies used nationally representative samples of adults and one of adolescents. Most studies (n = 26) assessed PA only; three only SB, and four both PA and SB. All studies used self-reported measures. Among healthy adults, prevalence of insufficient PA ranged from 5% to 83%. Occupational and transport-related PA contributed the most towards total PA with negligible contribution of recreational PA. Among children and adolescents, the prevalence of insufficient PA ranged between 20% and 67%. Females engaged in less PA compared to males. Limited evidence currently exists about the prevalence of SB, especially among adults.


PA and SB research has received little attention in Bangladesh. Critical knowledge gaps identified in this review should be taken into account when designing new research and programmes in Bangladesh and other LMICs with similar socio-economic and cultural settings.

Authors and affiliations

Uddin1, 2, M. Hasan3, K.M. Saif-Ur-Rahman2, 4, 5, S.Mandic6, 7, A. Khan1, 2

  1. School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane QLD, 4072, Australia
  2. Active Healthy Kids Bangladesh (AHKBD), Bangladesh
  3. Department of Public Health and Informatics, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University, Dhaka, 1000, Bangladesh
  4. Health Systems and Population Studies, icddr,b, Dhaka, 1000, Bangladesh
  5. Graduate School of Medicine, University of Nagoya, Nagoya, 466-8550, Japan
  6. Active Living Laboratory, School of Physical Education, Sport and Exercise Sciences, University of Otago, Dunedin, 9054, New Zealand
  7. Centre for Sustainability, University of Otago, Dunedin, 9054, New Zealand


Uddin R, Hasan M, Saif-Ur-Rahman KM, Mandic S, Khan A. Physical activity and sedentary behaviour in Bangladesh: a systematic scoping review. Public Health. 2020;179:147-159. doi:10.1016/j.puhe.2019.10.006

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