Healthy Living

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National Walking Month

Walking Together This May

We're ramping up to May 2021, when we will see the UK launch it's annual National Walking Month! That means shaking off our winter routines and embracing the new spring weather. Read more about National Walking Month

Step Challenge

One of the easiest ways to get everyone involved this year is to run a walking challenge for your family, friends and community. Walking has so many wonderful health and mental wellbeing benefits, and is one of the easiest forms of exercise to get started with.

Creating your own challenge takes minutes with Big Team Challenge's 'Challenge Creator'. This allows you to choose how many participants can join, how long the challenge lasts for, what route you can walk and much more.

Our New Virtual Walks

To celebrate the UK and National Walking Month, we have created 4 new routes, each specifically around ones of the 4 countries.

Walk Northern Ireland

Walk Scotland

Walk England

Walk Wales

Our Step Challenge Statistics

Overview

We recently did a deep dive into the statistics of Big Team Challenge and discovered a lot of surprising facts about our walking challenges.
These include: how our customers run their own step count challenges, how many users are web versus mobile apps, and just how many steps we're tallying each day!

You can find these on our newly created statistics page, which we'll be updating regularly moving forward.

New Year, New Step Count Challenges

Our year has had an incredible start so far, with more people creating walking challenges than ever before!
So far in 2021, on average, we've seen 101 new registrations every single day! That's incredible and just goes to show that even in the cold winter months, people are creating new exercise challenges for their friends, family and employees to get them moving!

New Virtual Walks

We've been busy in the digital workshop building new virtual routes all around the world for you to use for free.
You can find all of these by signing up to your own free admin account and creating as many draft exercise challenges as you like.
You can sign up at https://app.bigteamchallenge.com/signup-form with no obligation to pay. You will only ever be asked for payment details when you want to publish a challenge and make it live.

Employee Wellbeing Team Challenges

Healthy And Happy Employees

It is estimated that around 27 million working days were lost to in 2017/18 due to work-related ill health, with almost one and a half million people suffering from a work-related illness.
Fostering a corporate mentality that places focus on employee wellbeing has shown to help reduce stress, anxiety and injury within the workforce.

Structuring support from the top down

Government guidelines suggest that support for employees mental wellbeing as well physical should start from the very top, with management being made aware of the importance of the subject. Without this, making any sort of lasting change within any organisation will be an uphill struggle.

With the support of upper management in place, line managers and supervisors are the next piece of the puzzle. These roles are critical in scheduling and maintaining a well balanced work load for their team, ensuring that while everyone is productive, no one is burdened and overworked.
A good line manager should always have the health and well being of their team at the forefront of their mind. The evidence out there shows that when a team member is off work from work-related illness, that it will greatly impact the business more than having simply spread the work over more staff or a longer period of time.

Then comes the main workforce itself and helping to change the minds of the employees to recognise healthy work and life behaviours.

There is no "one size fits all" approach

Making this lasting change within the core workforce isn't as simple as ticking some boxes and emailing out some helpful links.
Positive and lasting change will come from a number of maintained company policies such as regular training on workplace injuries, mental health counselling and check ups, access to employee benefits for exercise and relaxation, and much more.

Big Team Challenge's contribution

Big team challenge has been designed to work seamlessly with existing corporate structures to help make a positive change to employees perception of healthy living.
Employees can get in to teams, track their steps, sync with fitbit and iphones, encourage each other to get moving on their lunch breaks or days off, and start making a change to their daily activity.

We've seen great results with our employee step count challenges and high levels of participation throughout the challenge. Not only is it a great way to help improve a company's physical health levels, but regular exercise has been shown to improve participants mental well being too.

Challenges can be up and running within an afternoon and be accessed by any number of employees, departments, and even countries all around the world.

Read more about Employee Wellbeing and how it can be incorporated into Big Team Challenge

Why not check out our pricing page to find out more.

Running an online walking competition

Creating motivation through friendly competition

After several years of data and hosting dozens of challenges for various councils, health boards, charities and private companies, we've come to learn a few things about building motivation.

Teams Versus Teams

Big Team Challenge aside from being a simple step count challenge system, allows you to choose two forms of team building. The first–and arguably our most popular–is Teams Vs. Teams.
In this mode, all of your employees or participants get into teams ranging from 2 to 10 in members. Each team is then trying to complete the same virtual route as every other team in the challenge.
Teams are able to see other team's progress on the leaderboards, and can therefore build some friendly competition between each other.

One Big Challenge

Our latest update is the new "One Big Challenge" mode. Much like Teams Vs Teams, everyone gets into a team of their own with their friends or family, and works together to increase their team's distance total. However the crucial difference here is that instead of each team working their solitary way across a virtual map, every team on the challenge contributes to pushing the whole challenge a long one single map. So while every team can still keep track of every other team and push motivation within their own, they are contributing to a firendlier version of the challenge where everyone is helping get the challenge completed.

Giving out prizes

While everyone should be a winner simply for competing and engaging in some company fun, perhaps you want to hand out some prizes too to sweeten the pot.
We always discourage from giving a prize to the "number 1" on the leaderboard as it can be unfair on those that tried their very hardest but are perhaps older or have a reason they can't run 26 mile marathons every weekend.
This is why we built in detailed reporting so you can choose instead to reward anyone who perhaps added distance every day, or you could give prizes to three people at random who added 20000 steps over the course of a specific weekend.

Keeping Remote Workers Motivated

Getting employees moving again

As we enter the eighth month of Covid restrictions it's easy to get into a comfortable pattern and lose motivation. With winter encroaching this is even more present as the nights draw in and the sun all but vanishes during the working day. So why wait another 2 months for the new year to set goals and get things in gear?

Changing up the routine

They say it takes 30 days of a new habit for it to stick. That means that in a single month an individual can build lasting change to their physical and mental well being. This doesn't mean that everyone needs to jump in with both feet first, these changes can start off small. How about changing up a morning routine to get up just 20 minutes earlier to enjoy a short walk and a little more of the sunshine before work? Or swapping out the morning toast and jam for a healthier alternative like porridge...with a little jam as a treat.

Creating a challenge to help

Big Team Challenge is built to help with these changes to participant's habits. Having a team behind you helps build motivation and encourages you to make sure you are contributing fairly. With our challenges running from 28 to 84 days long, we can help your employees or community stay active each day and build those connections. Our step count challenges allow users to see how many steps they have walked each day, compare that to their team mates, earn achievements and unlock milestones.

Local governments move towards adopting exercise challenges

Keeping up with health initiatives

More and more often we are seeing governments adopting or updating their current health guidelines for local councils and NHS health boards to include workplace and community health challenges. Not only does it seem that the evidence is pointing towards physically healthier staff and citizens, but an increase in productivity and mental wellbeing.

Healthy Working Lives

The Scottish government have gone one step further and produced and entire online resource and award system for employers to engage with. This website gives fantastic advice about how to not only get your staff active and moving, but all of the benefits associated with doing so.

https://www.healthyworkinglives.scot/Pages/default.aspx

Mental Wellbeing - and the importance of getting away from your desk!

A core reason for the development of Big Team Challenge was a way of helping companies find a way to help relieve some of the stress that comes with working in an office environment. In the last 30 years there has been a dramatic shift from and active labour intensive workforce to that of a sedentary office based one. With this change comes a dangerous chance that the population as a whole will be much less active during their working lives. It's important that employers are active in getting their staff engaged in regular daily exercise, whether this is swapping their car ride for a bike, or something as simple as parking further away and getting in more steps before and after work. However, it's not solely the employees' attitudes that needs to change, employers need to think about how they are affecting the mental wellbeing of their staff too. Building policies in place to encourage regular breaks stressful activities is a great way to get started. Perhaps start with putting rules in place to enforce breaks from screens and phone calls and getting those who can to do a quick lap around the building?

To find out how much a bespoke Work Place Challenge might cost you, use our handy Pricing Calculator for free.

Breaking the 7 billion step count

We're walking to the moon and back again (and then there and back.... yet again).

We reached another exciting goal at Big Team Challenge this week: we reached over 7 billion steps walked together with all of our partners and their participants.

That means that we've collectively walked, cycled, ran, swam, rolled and jazzercised our way to the moon and back again... in fact we're on our return journey for the second time!

We would like to thank our clients for joining us and returning to us year after year and making this big milestone possible.

An average step count of around 10,000 steps per participant

We always hear that number passed around a lot as a good target for everyone to achieve for their daily exercise goal. However, after pouring over our anonymised statistics, we actually found that our participants on average were exceeding this!

This is wonderful news for both us and our challenge organisers. It helps illustrate that Big Team Challenge can help build lasting change in participants, and even help maintain healthy attitudes to pushing yourself further.

Future Step Count Challenges

If you're looking for some inspiration, why not check out our existing challenges and see how others are using Big Team Challenge for the own goals.

Creating an exercise challenge during Covid restrictions

How covid-19 can lead to a healthier workplace

The restrictions that Covid-19 has placed upon almost every workplace is completely unique to an entire generation, but perhaps there's opportunity to be found behind it all.

In March the UK Government began imposing tighter restrictions on workplaces and a nationwide lockdown began, but at Big Team Challenge we saw a dramatic change: we saw an increase in new and existing employers signing up to use BIg Team Challenge.

Keeping communication flowing and staff engaged

With entire workforces being made to work remotely, it was understandable that office managers might think that productivity would slip, exercise routines would go out of the window and the health of their employees would suffer. This led to a lot of HR staff getting in touch and asking how they could integrate Big Team Challenge into their work places and get staff engaged.

The reports are in...

With each new challenge that's being run by our clients during Covid lockdown, we're getting excellent feedback on how our platform has left their teams with a great sense of friendly competition and increased motivation.

Read about one such experience