Neami staff and consumers clock up as many ‘steps’ they can take over 2 weeks (18 May –31 May) and challenge both themselves and other Neami service teams to take the most steps. 10,000 steps per day is the ultimate goal!
During the Next Steps Competition, participants are given a pedometer and a Step and Activity Tracking Chart to record their steps each day. Exercising with a friend or in a group is encouraged, and the use of SmartPhone apps are also recommended as a way to keep track of activity. Some apps even include suggested walking routes and coaching.
Did you know?
The recommended 10,000 steps a day originated in Japan in the early 1960s. Japanese researchers led by Dr Yoshiro Hatano determined the average person took 3,500 to 5,000 steps per day, and that if they were to increase their steps to 10,000 steps per day, the result would be healthier, fitter people.
The competition was introduced by Neami’s Health Promotion team and supports participants to increase their physical activity through walking or other cardiovascular activities such as swimming and aerobics. It encourages you to exercise each day but also draws your attention to incidental activity, such as taking the stairs instead of the lift, or parking a few blocks away from work, as simple efforts to keep moving
Here's what consumers and Neami staff have said about the Next Steps competition
“For me it was a good way getting me started and active as I need some encouragement”- Neami Ashfield staff comment
“Ah yes, I would like to see how far I can walk really want to count my steps”- consumer comment
“It is a very useful competition that gets more people interested in being active” - consumer comment
“Really enjoyed the competition because it increased my confidence and helped me push forward to my future activities, i.e. camping, bushwalking” - consumer comment
“Pedometer was useful - still using it” – consumer comment
“Maitland site is now considering a permanent walking group three times a week” – Neami Maitland staff comment
We know that cardiovascular exercise on a regular basis not only improves physical fitness but is a great way to maintain peace of mind and overall mental health. The Next Steps Competition also prompts you to spend time in nature, the benefits of which are known to boost mood and self-esteem.