Beat the Street fitness fun fun gets underway in Wolverhampton

Beat the Street Wolverhampton is officially underway – and residents are being encouraged to join in the unique interactive walking, cycling and rolling game.

Left to right – Kean Shakespeare nine, Isabella James 10, Vanisha Banga 10 and Jake Shields 10 take part in Beat the Street
Left to right – Kean Shakespeare nine, Isabella James 10, Vanisha Banga 10 and Jake Shields 10 take part in Beat the Street

Thousands of people of all ages have already signed up to take part in the game, which began on Tuesday and continues until August 17.

Beeping and flashing sensors called Beat Boxes have been placed on lampposts around the town for the duration of the game to help participants explore the local area and to develop the habit of regular exercise.

Primary school pupils have been provided with game fobs or cards so they and their families can take part, along with an activity pack with a wallchart and stickers including weekly fun challenges to keep them busy through the holidays.

Meanwhile, everyone else can take part by collecting a free game card from one of the distribution points listed at beatthestreet.me/wolverhampton, including WV Active leisure centres, West Park Tea Rooms, Northycote Farm Cafe, Wolverhampton Art Gallery, The Way Youth Zone, Central Library, Bantock Park Cafe, Wildside Activity Centre and Wolverhampton Swimming and Fitness Centre.

Players walk, cycle or roll between the Beat Boxes which are spaced approximately half a mile apart – hovering their contactless fobs or cards over the Beat Boxes to score points. The further players travel, the more points they score for their community or school team. The first Beat Box marks the start of the journey and players earn 10 points for each subsequent Beat Box they visit.

There are leaderboards for schools, community teams and charity teams, with a range of cash prizes and trophies up for grabs from a prize fund worth over £2,000. A total of £500 will also be donated to the Mayor of Wolverhampton’s chosen charities, too.

At what marks the start of the school holidays for most children, the theme for the first week of Beat the Street is Go Play!, with a series of challenges including taking a trip into Wolverhampton city centre to visit the Beat Box outside the Civic Hall, and encouraging people to explore a part of the city they haven’t been to before. Subsequent weeks will have a different focus, from Go Explore to Go Wild and Go Travel.

Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, Wolverhampton Council’s cabinet member for public health and wellbeing, said: “Even prior to the pandemic, many children in our borough were not meeting the Chief Medical Officer’s recommendation of 60 minutes a day of physical activity.

“The picture for adults is much the same, and as we find our way out of the pandemic, Beat the Street provides a great opportunity for young people and their families to become more active through a fun and friendly competition.

“We’re delighted that the game will give everyone of ages and abilities the opportunity to explore the area, to spend time together as a family and to enjoy walking, cycling and rolling outdoors in all the wonderful green spaces in and around Wolverhampton.”

For more information about where to collect your free Beat the Street card and how to play, visit beatthestreet.me/wolverhampton or follow @BTSWolves on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Beat the Street is delivered by Intelligent Health with funding from the National Lottery via Sport England and forms a key part of the council’s Yo! Summer Festival, which will offer hundreds of events across the city, many free of charge, to keep children, young people and their families active and entertained throughout the school holidays – more details at yowolves.co.uk.

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