Hospital staff step up to Olympics challenge

Some of the hospital staff who are planning to 'Walk the Torch'
Some of the hospital staff who are planning to 'Walk the Torch'

TEAMS of staff at Kettering General Hospital are planning to walk more than 17 million steps to mark the approach of the Olympic Games .

Teams of up to 30 staff from different departments across the hospital will be competing against each other to see how many steps their team can take from today until the start of the games on July 27.

The challenge is called Walk the Torch and the 17 million step target refers to the number of steps taken by the Olympic Torch’s torchbearers during their 8,000 mile journey around the UK over this 70-day period.

The challenge – inspired by Walk England’s Walk4Life campaign – is taking place across the country at schools, hospitals and councils.

The number of steps taken by each member of staff will be recorded on a small pedometer device which staff attach to their clothes.

If each team member, in a team of 30 staff, walk about 8,100 steps – about four miles – per day for the 70 day period the team will achieve the 17 million step target.

Occupational health services manager Jackie Farrow said: “The Walk the Torch challenge fits right in with the hospital’s aim of promoting activities to hospital staff that have a positive impact on the work/life balance.

“We already support yoga and zumba classes on site and from May 21 we plan to have taster events in these and also tai chi, volleyball, mini-massage and running, during the countdown to the Olympics.

“Setting a challenge during the 70-day countdown to the Olympics Games seemed like a perfect way to encourage our staff to be more active, get fit, feel good and have fun.”

The hospital’s director of human resources, Geoffrey Etule, said: “We hope the challenge will foster a spirit of team working and competition in a light-hearted manner which will help motivate staff to adopt a greater level of fitness and cultivate an element of “the feel good factor”.

“People can walk at work, and at home, to push up their team’s total and know that they are doing their body some good with every step.”