Active IQ Entry Level 3 Award in the Principles of Leading an Active, Healthy Life (sample manual)

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Entry Level 3 Award in the

Principles of Leading an

Active, Healthy Life

Version AIQ005931

The principles of active, healthy living

Section 1

Physical fitness

Fitness is defined as:

‘The ability to meet the demands of the environment.’

(BBC, 2020)

This means that everyone needs a different level of fitness, depending on their job and what they do with their time/

lifestyles. For example, a builder would need more physical fitness than someone who works in an office, but a

professional footballer would need more fitness than the builder.

The Principles of Leading an Active, Healthy Life

Copyright © 2021 Active IQ Ltd. Not for resale 5

The principles of active, healthy living

Section 1


Answer the following questions on your experience of sleep:

1. How much sleep do you get on average?

2. What do you do to relax before you go to sleep?

3. How could you improve your sleep environment?

4. Do you often wake up during the night?

How can you stop this from happening in the future?

5. How do you feel after a good night’s sleep?

6. How do you feel after a bad night’s sleep?

Here are some great tips for helping you improve your sleeping habits! Think about why they might help.

• Get into a routine – wake up and go to bed at the same time every day, even on weekends.

• Use the hour before bed as quiet and relaxation time – avoid bright light, technology and noise.

• Avoid heavy or large meals a few hours before bedtime.

• Avoid alcoholic drinks before bedtime.

• Avoid nicotine before bedtime as it is a stimulant. So is caffeine in coffee, soft drinks, tea and

chocolate – the effects of caffeine can last as long as 8 hours!

• Spend time outdoors every day and be physically active.

• Keep your bedroom dark, cool and quiet.

• Take a bath or use relaxation techniques before going to bed.

The Principles of Leading an Active, Healthy Life

Figure 1.1: Rules of healthy sleep

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Section 2

Mental health and wellbeing



If you notice that someone is showing signs of mental

ill health, make sure that you check they are OK, talk

to them. Listen and encourage them to seek help.

Time to talk

Being open, sharing and talking about your feelings can help your

overall wellbeing and help you stay in good mental health.

Talking about your mental health is important because:

It is not a sign of weakness –

you are taking charge of your

wellbeing and doing what you

can to stay healthy.

It helps you cope

with a problem you

have been carrying

around, helping you

feel supported and less

alone, and helping to

find a solution.

It helps you deal

positively with times of

trouble and challenge.

If you open up, it may

encourage others to do so too

and you can therefore improve

each other’s wellbeing.

There is evidence

that talking about

mental health can

make us feel better.

The NHS’ five steps to mental wellbeing

The NHS provides evidence that there are five steps you can take to improve your mental health and wellbeing, and

to try and manage positively any problems you are having. Trying these out could help you feel more positive and

able to get the most out of life:

Connect with other


• Helps you build a sense of


• Gives an opportunity to

share positive experiences.

• Others can provide

emotional support.

Be physically active

• Raises your self-esteem.

• Helps you set goals and

achieve them.

• Causes chemical changes

in the brain to positively

change your mood.

Learn new skills

• Boosts self-confidence.

• Builds a sense of purpose.

• Helps to connect with


Give to others

• Creates positive feelings and a sense

of reward.

• Gives you a feeling of purpose and


• Helps you connect with others.

Pay attention to the present

moment – mindfulness

• Helps you enjoy life more.

• Helps you understand yourself better.

• Positively changes the way you

feel about life and how you

approach challenges.

Scan the QR

code to find out

more about the

five steps.

Figure 2.1: The NHS’ five steps to mental wellbeing


Copyright © 2021 Active IQ Ltd. Not for resale

Section 4

Barriers, goals and physical activity guidelines

Mobility: movements should

start small and build up to a full

range of motion.

All major joints should be

mobilised (shoulders, elbows,

hips, knees, ankles and spine).

For example: shoulder lifts and

side bends.

Pulse raising: movements

should be low-impact and have

a small range of motion.

Use large muscle groups to

raise the heart rate. Choose

movements that prepare the

body for the main workout.

For example: walking, small

knee bends, marching on the


Pre-stretching: stretch only

when the muscles are warm.

All main muscle groups should

be stretched. Dynamic or static

stretching can be used.

For example: arm swings, gentle

backwards lunging, gentle toetouching.


Figure 4.3: Features of a warm-up

At the end of any sport or physical activity, there is a cooldown

phase to lower the heart rate and return the body back

to its normal resting state. This is essential to reduce the

risk of blood pooling (blood gathering in the lower legs) and

to promote circulation.

The full cool-down component is completed at the end of the

main activity, when no further work will happen. It will involve

a reduction in intensity, such as a gentle cycle or walk and

some light stretching.

Appropriate clothing and footwear

Physical activity and sport come with some risk of injury,

but this risk can be minimised – not just by warming up

and cooling down, but by having the appropriate:

• Personal protective equipment (PPE).

• Clothing that is suitable for the activity.

• Footwear.


Think of a sport or physical activity

that you take part in. List three pieces

of clothing or footwear that should be

worn, and three that should be avoided.

Personal protective equipment Suitable clothing Appropriate footwear

Some sports and activities

require specific protection, and

this can even be part of their

rules – for example, cycling

helmets, gym shields, shin pads,

buoyancy aids.

Make sure they are safety-tested,

the correct size and fit for use.

Some activities or sports

will require suitable clothing,

such as warm weather gear or

waterproofs in the outdoors,

loose-fitting clothing for mobility,

or closer-fitting clothing for less

resistance and drag.

Clothing that is light, technical

and sweat-wicking is always


Footwear is important as it can

impact your knees, hips, back,

and general posture and physical

health. Many activities and sports

require specialist footwear. Some

footwear is also required for safety,

e.g. studs on football boots.

It is important to have the

appropriate footwear, of the

correct size and fit for the activity.

Table 4.2: PPE, suitable clothing and appropriate footwear for physical activity


Copyright © 2021 Active IQ Ltd. Not for resale

Creating a personal health and activity plan

Section 6

• If you are under a lot of stress, you may want to check your health with

your GP first.

• Exercise will help to manage stress, but you may want to use a gentler

approach – for example, walking outdoors.

• Alternatively, you could try yoga or Pilates, as they can help you to

manage stress.

• If you are eating unhealthily, you may want to make some changes to your


• Food is energy, so if you are not eating enough of the right foods, you

may feel that you don’t have the energy to exercise.

• If you smoke, you can still exercise.

• However, be aware that smoking reduces the amount of oxygen in

your body, which will affect your energy levels.

• Smoking will also clog the arteries, is a contributory factor for

coronary heart disease and may influence your blood pressure, so

you may want to check this.

• You should not smoke especially if you are under 18 years of age.

• If you drink alcohol, you can still exercise.

• You should never exercise immediately after having a drink, or if drunk.

• If you drink on most days, you should aim to have two alcohol-free days

each week and decrease the amount that you drink, to prevent any longterm

health problems.

• You should not drink alcohol if you are under 18 years of age.

What else should you consider when creating a

personal health and activity plan?

• Choose activities that you like, so that you are more likely to continue with them.

• Try a variety of different activities, to keep you interested.

• Build up steadily and gradually. Don’t do too much too soon.

• Always warm up first and cool down after exercise to prevent injury.

• If you are new to exercise, use low-intensity, low-weight activities, fewer repetitions and less complex activities

so that you exercise more safely.

Creating personal health and fitness goals

The Principles of Leading an Active, Healthy Life


In order to be able to create your own health and fitness goals, you need to make sure you know what these

terms mean. Have a look back through the manual to check this.

Remember health can be physical, mental or social and, although it can include being free from illness and

injury, it is much more than that.

The different components of fitness include muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, cardiovascular

fitness, agility, speed, power, balance and coordination.

Goals give you a target to work towards and can keep you motivated; remember they should be SMART. Can

you remember what SMART stands for?

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