Bike Sharing and Employee Wellness

by Mitch Vars | Apr 09, 2010
| 1 Comment

Summary:

Nice Ride Minnesota is a non profit organization which is launching the first large scale public bike sharing program in the United States. Starting in June of 2010, Nice Ride will have 700 bicycles available for public use in downtown Minneapolis, Uptown and the U of M campus. One of the first projects that we would like to undertake after launching the system, is the development of incentive based employee wellness programs for employers in our service area. These programs would encourage employees to use our bike system as part of an active and healthy lifestyle. The proposed wellness program would allow employers to set a goal for their employees, and offer incentives for employees who complete the goal during a set period. For example and employer might set a goal where participants would take at least two bike rides per week over an eight week period. Our system will track each participants progress toward their goal and report back to their employer upon completion. Because the system is convenient and readily available where people work, we feel this would be a great way to introduce them to a more active way of life. Our goal is to make increased activity part of daily life, rather than something that you need to set aside time for, like going to a gym. Instead of siting at your desk over lunch, take a bike and go someplace. Instead of driving to that meeting across town, take a bike. We've already identified a number of employers who are interested in using such a program. All we need now is to develop and implement it.

First Name

Mitch

Last Name

Vars

About You

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First Name

Mitch

Last Name

Vars

Country

United States, MN

City

Minneapolis

Country

United States, MN

City

Minneapolis

About You

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About Your Organization

Organization Name

Nice Ride Minnesota

Organization Website

Organization Phone

6127887627

Organization Address

2834 10th Avenue South Minneapolis, MN 55407

Your idea

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Name your idea

Bike Sharing and Employee Wellness

Describe your idea

Nice Ride Minnesota is a non profit organization which is launching the first large scale public bike sharing program in the United States. Starting in June of 2010, Nice Ride will have 700 bicycles available for public use in downtown Minneapolis, Uptown and the U of M campus. One of the first projects that we would like to undertake after launching the system, is the development of incentive based employee wellness programs for employers in our service area. These programs would encourage employees to use our bike system as part of an active and healthy lifestyle. The proposed wellness program would allow employers to set a goal for their employees, and offer incentives for employees who complete the goal during a set period. For example and employer might set a goal where participants would take at least two bike rides per week over an eight week period. Our system will track each participants progress toward their goal and report back to their employer upon completion. Because the system is convenient and readily available where people work, we feel this would be a great way to introduce them to a more active way of life. Our goal is to make increased activity part of daily life, rather than something that you need to set aside time for, like going to a gym. Instead of siting at your desk over lunch, take a bike and go someplace. Instead of driving to that meeting across town, take a bike. We've already identified a number of employers who are interested in using such a program. All we need now is to develop and implement it.

How do you define your "community"?

Our community is anyone who would like an easy and convenient way to get outside, experience the city in a new way, and get exercise while doing it.

Tell us how you think the issue of obesity is affecting your community

Obesity is affecting our community in countless ways, shortened lifespans, decreased mobility, and increased health care costs to name a few. As more of us become obese, we become spectators rather than active participants in our communities.

Why should your idea be selected?

There aren't any easy solutions to the obesity problem. There is no pill or potion that will allow us to go on living sedentary lives and yet remain healthy. We don't need a medical breakthrough, or a new diet. Change needs to come from within people. Our health is our own responsibility, not that of our doctors or insurers. We won't get a handle on the obesity problem until we can get people to make real and positive changes in how they live every day. We need to make options available to people so that they can be empowered to change how they go about their everyday lives. These options need to be easy and convenient in order to be adopted. Making bike readily available for public use removes barriers that can cause people to make bad choices. Using our system to replace short trips that would otherwise be taken by car can have a real impact on peoples activity levels. Bike sharing has the potential to change how people live, work and play.

hayworth structure said: I believe we should promote this kind of behavior so that all people would also adopt our ways to be more flexible and healthy and ... about this Competition Entry. - 2001 days ago read more >

Mitch Vars updated this Competition Entry. - 3424 days ago

Mitch Vars submitted this idea. - 3425 days ago