Three industry firms – Active IQ, fibodo and Study Active – have teamed up to create a free, bespoke online fitness platform for NHS staff.
Called #DoingOurBit, the platform offers unique, individual workouts personalised to the needs of NHS staff.
The content has been created by volunteer personal trainers, who were invited to ‘give back’ to the hard-working NHS workers by providing healthcare staff with brief, but effective, workouts suitable for the home and for between shifts.
A launch group of 27 volunteer instructors has created more than 40 workouts for the platform – ranging from relaxation sessions, stretching, low impact and bodyweight workouts to more energetic high-intensity routines.
The project is the brainchild of Julie Davis, deputy chief operating officer at the Clinical Research Network West Midlands.
An amateur powerlifter, who is currently working towards her Level 3 Personal Training qualification, Davis is a passionate advocate of exercise for physical and mental wellbeing.
After witnessing the physical and emotional impact that the treating of COVID-19 patients was having on her 190-strong workforce, Davis wanted to provide free workouts and relaxation sessions to help her colleagues cope.
The initiative caught the eye of The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, which wanted to offer the workouts to its 10,000 staff.
“All of a sudden, I realised that I needed a bigger platform and professional support,” Davis said.
She turned to Study Active and its awarding organisation Active IQ which, in turn, brought in fibodo to help host the service.
“I was overwhelmed by the quick and positive reaction I had for my idea with Active IQ, fibodo and Study Active giving their time and expertise immediately and freely,” Davis added.
“The speed at which they all worked to was extraordinary. Within four weeks I’d gone from having a casual conversation with Study Active to us having a fantastic, bespoke fitness platform for our NHS colleagues.”
Study Active, Active IQ and its agency Action Group, reached out to their best PT contacts and co-ordinated the first wave of trainers to get #DoingOurBit established.
PTs were quick to suggest workouts that they would record as a gift for the NHS. #DoingOurBit T-shirts were designed for a uniform look and each PT recorded their workout for fibodo to upload onto the bespoke platform.
The site and individual workouts are personalised to the NHS and the content is unique. The PTs worked to criteria set by Study Active and Active IQ and a quality control process was implemented to ensure all the workouts are safe and effective.
“Julie had a great idea and we were keen to help,” says James Luscombe, Study Active MD.
“Immediately clear to us was the need to work with trusted PTs who would share the vision and be able to produce professional yet personalised sessions: it’s the personalisation and ‘fitness gift’ to the NHS that set #DoingOurBit apart.”
Jenny Patrickson, Active IQ managing director, adds: “When we heard Julie’s idea, we set out to help create something personal and friendly but also of the highest quality and integrity.
“Our External Verifier team stepped up to share their expertise to check the safety and quality of all the workouts.
“In this way, #DoingOurBit will stand the test of time and prove valuable to NHS staff long after lockdown and we’re proud to have played our part.”
#DoingOurBit went live on June 15, 2020 with 27 PTs delivering over 40 workouts – four weeks after the initial conversations started.
• NHS staff can access the platform by clicking here. clicking here.