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How to shape up your company’s employee wellness program

(TECH NEWS) A new technology offers inter-office health and employee wellness competition in a virtual world.

“Get my steps”

This past summer, my dad and stepmom made after-dinner walks part of their daily routine. The reason behind this was to not exercise themselves but their Fitbits as well.

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The phrase, “I’ve got to go get my steps,” became a common saying around the house as they both worked to hit 10,000 steps each day. Soon after they began this activity, a competitive component urged their walks even more.

You better ShapeUp

My dad’s office began a step challenge by using the program ShapeUp. ShapeUp is a website that offers a way for groups or teams to challenge each other to a virtual competition that urges employees to get to steppin’.

The wellness promotion is executed through the American Adventure. Over a number of months, participants log their steps (either manually or through Fitbit connection) as they “walk” from the east coast to the west.

Friendly competition

This activity helps instigate wellness and social networking in a team building fashion. And, who doesn’t love a little friendly competition?

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ShapeUp is particularly nice for my dad’s team, as they are distributed throughout the country.

The program allows for them to social connect in one simple place.

Incentives

Each week, you can log on and check the standings. In this particular case, the prize is simply bragging rights. However, different offices could offer different prizes to create incentive.

The revival of the gym (or “health club”) craze have come and gone, and it only makes sense that new ideas would come from a virtual place. The typical competition runs for eight weeks.

The American Adventure

The American Adventure in particular is a 2,000 mile trip from New York to Hollywood. As the employees wind the road, they are expected to increase their physical activity (for example: if you start off just walking, add in a bike ride somewhere around Chicago.)

While competition can always be fun and incentivizing, it is important to keep in mind that your health should always be a priority, competition or not. Make sure you are always being safe in your physical activity.

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#ShapeUp

Staff Writer, Taylor Leddin is a publicist and freelance writer for a number of national outlets. She was featured on Thrive Global as a successful woman in journalism, and is the editor-in-chief of The Tidbit. Taylor resides in Chicago and has a Bachelor in Communication Studies from Illinois State University.

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