physical activity

ACSM Updates Physical Activity Guidelines for Type 2 Diabetes

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) has released a new consensus statement on physical activity in individuals with type 2 diabetes (T2D).

These recommendations come as an update to the group’s 2010 position statement that was published in collaboration with the American Diabetes Association. The update now includes a wider focus on physical activity and reducing sedentary time instead of planned exercise.

Among the recommendations:

  • Glycemic management in adults with T2D is improved by regular aerobic exercise training, with less daily time in hyperglycemia and reductions in overall hyperglycemia.
  • Glucose levels are reduced by greater energy expenditure after meals, regardless of exercise intensity or type.
  • Children and adolescents with T2D should meet the general population’s physical activity goals for their age group.
  • To prevent hypoglycemia, individuals with T2D using insulin or insulin secretagogues should supplement with carbohydrates or reduce insulin as needed during and after exercise.
  • Participating in an exercise program before bariatric surgery may improve outcomes and provide additional health benefits.

“In general, the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans apply to all individuals with type 2 diabetes, with a few exceptions and modifications,” the researchers concluded. “People with type 2 diabetes should engage in physical activity regularly and be encouraged to reduce sedentary time and break up sitting time with frequent activity breaks. Any activities undertaken with acute and chronic health complications related to diabetes may require accommodations to ensure safe and effective participation.”


—Leigh Precopio



Kanaley JA, Colberg SR, Corcoran MH, et al. Exercise/physical activity in individuals with type 2 diabetes: a consensus statement from the American College of Sports Medicine. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2022;54(2):353-368. doi:10.1249/MSS.0000000000002800