An innovative physical activity game that has engaged more than a million people is set to launch in Shepton Mallet and Wells. The Beat the Street game will take place in Shepton Mallet and Wells from April 26 to May 24 thanks to a National Lottery grant from Sport England.
Beat the Street encourages people to get outside and to get active and is open to anyone of any age who would like to take part. The game works by turning the town into a real-life game and residents will soon start to see special sensors called Beat Boxes appearing on lampposts around the area.
Prior to the game, primary school pupils from participating schools will be provided with cards while parents and teachers will also receive a card from the school so they can accompany children. The wider community can pick up a free contactless card from a distribution point listed on the website www.beatthestreet.me/sheptonwells.
Players join a school or community team to join or you can set up your own with a minimum of six players. Players then walk, cycle or wheel between the 38 Beat Boxes which are spaced half a mile apart – hovering the cards as they go. The further players travel, the more points they score.
Beat the Street was created by GP Dr William Bird MBE, an expert in physical activity and the founder of Intelligent Health. Beat the Street has not only had a significant impact on increasing low levels of physical activity among adults and children, but also helps reduce congestion, improves air quality, and helps families spend time in green spaces together.
It was adapted to ensure that it was safe to play during the COVID-19 pandemic with contactless cards.
Jake Hannis, Somerset Activity and Sports Partnership Deputy CEO, said: “We are incredibly excited to be bringing Beat the Street to Shepton Mallet & Wells. We know that one of the best things people can do right now for their physical and mental health is to move more and to get out into green space where possible, and Beat the Street really helps people do just that in a safe way.
“It’s free to take part in Beat the Street and it’s open to everyone regardless of age, ability or background. It’s an inclusive game that encourages you to exercise from your front door and to clock up the miles within the game framework.”
According to research, one in four people in England does less than 30 minutes of physical activity a week, which classes them as inactive. Four out of five primary school children do not get the recommended amount of daily exercise of 60 minutes a day.
The National Lottery funding from Sport England will not only help people in Shepton Mallet and Wells to get active, but also to leave a positive legacy to improve the community’s health and wellbeing. For more information on updates on the game, please click www.beatthestreet.me/sheptonwells or follow @BeatTheStreetSheptonWells on Facebook.