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What Nations Rank Best in Health Among Athletes?

Updated: Jul 16, 2020

Curious about which countries have the fittest athletes? Well, a recent study from Reebok offers some answers.

The company evaluated amateur and professional runners from various nations, using data based on the amount of track and trail events, as well as marathons, per million participants, the amount of gyms in their latest cities, and the number of Olympic medals, for athletic events, that country has.

With this in hand, researchers created a point system.

According to their findings, this is how the top performers among nations ranked:

1. Switzerland

2. Portugal

3. France

4. Ireland

5. Netherlands

6. Norway

7. United States

8. Germany

9. Australia

10. Canada

11. United Kingdom

12. Spain

Reebok said, “Keeping fit is something to be enjoyed by everyone across the globe, with it having significant benefits on both our bodies and minds. Running is one of the easiest forms of exercise.”

Michael Clem, a physical therapist at Havard Medical Center, says running is particularly good for older men who struggle with aerobic exercises.

"The older we get, the more we need to get moving to stay fit and healthy for the longer term. Running for less than an hour per week is a simple way to get the benefits if you are struggling to find the time."

David J. Linden Ph.D., a Professor of Neuroscience at John Hopkins University adds running is not just good for physical health, but for mental health as well.

“Exercise has a dramatic antidepressive effect. It blunts the brain’s response to physical and emotional stress.” Additionallyit can help improve memory, focus, ability to multi-task, and mood.

Dr. Linden adds, “Voluntary exercise is the single best thing one can do to slow the cognitive decline that accompanies normal aging.”

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