Liverpool is set to play host to an exciting six-week game called ‘Beat the Street’ – a challenge that encourages participants to walk, cycle and run as far as possible within their local community in their own time.
The free challenge was launched at Anfield Road Primary School with staff and pupils plus representatives from the local community, as well as children from All Saint’s Primary School.
Tracey Williams, assistant head at All Saints Catholic Primary School, added: “At All Saints we seek to promote health and exercise throughout key stages. The children are enthusiastic and excited to be a part of the ‘Beat the Street’ initiative and can’t wait to start to use their fobs.”
The game starts in the Liverpool North cluster on Wednesday, 18th May and takes place until 29th June covering the wards of Anfield, Everton and Kirkdale. A second competition within the southern half of the city will take place from 8th June to 20th July.
Beat the Street will turn Liverpool into a real-life game where residents are challenged to form or join a team and see how far they can walk, cycle or run within the timeframe. Participants will be able to log their journey by tapping cards against special sensors called ‘Beat Boxes’, which will be found on lampposts across the area.
The competition has been resourced through a partnership between Liverpool City Council, Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group and strategic stakeholders with the aim of encouraging people to adopt a more active lifestyle and to continue being more active beyond the end of the competition. The game is part of Healthy Liverpool – a five-year programme to improve health locally. Helping people reap the benefits of moving more is central to Healthy Liverpool. It is also part of Liverpool’s Physical Activity and Sport Strategy 2014-21 which sets out the vision for Liverpool to be the most active city in England by 2021.
There are two leader boards and fantastic prizes for the top three teams that travel the furthest and also those teams that clock up the highest average points per person. There is also the chance to win weekly ‘lucky tap’ prizes just for taking part. People of all ages can take part and players can win prizes for themselves and their community team.
Assistant Mayor Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “We’re very excited about launching this fun initiative which will help local people become more active and gain some real benefits. Doing any amount of physical activity that gets you breathing a bit harder is beneficial, even walking or wheeling for 10 minutes per day can help to make you feel good and can help prevent a multitude of health conditions.
“The wellbeing benefits of the programme are clear and previous Beat the Street competitions across the UK have demonstrated that the scheme helps people get to know their areas better, improves community cohesion and reduces congestion. All you need to do is to register a Beat the Street card and put a pair of trainers on! Good luck everyone!”
Dr Maurice Smith is a GP, and a member of NHS Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group’s Governing Body. He said: “Being more active is the single most effective way to improve our physical and mental health and, at the moment, Liverpool is behind other parts of the country when it comes to being active.
“Being active doesn’t have to mean joining the gym or running a half marathon. You can make a difference by building more movement into your daily life – taking part in Beat the Street is a great place to start moving more.
“Even small amounts of activity can make a huge difference to how we feel and help prevent illnesses such as heart disease and cancer, as well as easing the symptoms of long-term conditions such as diabetes and lung disease.”