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Daily Radio Exercise

A daily morning radio exercise promotes intergenerational communication.

Photo of DeletedUser

Written by DeletedUser

In Japan, each neighborhood association organizes a 10-minute radio gymnastic exercise at a public space (like a shrine or empty lot) every morning during summer holidays.

Honestly I hate to wake up so early during holidays. But having a routine helps you maintain a healthy rhythm of everyday life. I think this simple exercise program is adaptable to other places than Japan.

The morning gathering is not just about exercising but also about promoting intergenerational communication. Parents and elderly people often join in the same event as in the above video. It enables people to exchange greetings and chat. Sometimes it becomes a springboard to solve problems in their own community such as waste management, security of the neighborhood and aid to the elderly and disabled people.

Reference:
Japan Times " Wake up, hike out, tune in, move it"
http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20090722i1.html

What resources (money, time, people, technology, etc) will your concept need to be successful?

- A (relatively) large public space - Exercise facilitators - A radio - A special radio program* for the morning exercise - Participants from all generations

What steps could you take to implement this idea today?

1) Create a demo exercise program. We will need to find a local radio station to play it so that no facilitaor needs to feel too much responsibility. 2) Find facilitators in a certain neighborhood and ask them to help to organize the exercise event. Parent networks of a kindergarden or a school could play a key role. 3) Make a lot of copies of the event flyer and distribute it to all households. 4) Bring a music player (or radio) to the space, wait for participants and start the exercise!

How can your idea be scaled so that it's implemented in cities around the world?

It is important to create a mid-size group (less than 50) of people in the same neighborhood. In cities, we can create a group from each single apartment builiding. In suburbs, schools play a key role.

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Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Interesting concept. A great way for people to start the day and get the 'blood flowing'! Reminds me of the good old school days with morning recess; why not have it for everyone!

Do you envision time constraint issues with using a public broadcast? What if groups can't make the designated time? Though, I bet City's/municipalities would be willing to help promote something like this through the airwaves.

Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Thanks for your comment!
I agree some groups prefer different times.
Doing the (same) exercise at the same time helps to create a shared experience among neighboring communities. But then some people will never participate. We will need to run many tests in different communities and see what is the best for each.

Photo of An Old Friend

I have always enjoyed walking early mornings and afternoons in Asien cities and watching people gather and move together. It seems almost spiritual.

I am also thinking that it doesn't have to be happining through radio or mp3. Maybe a few gym teacher (or students studying sports) could just decide that every Wednesday morning they invite who ever to come and exercise with them?
In Copenhagen, were I live, we have public dance classes every Tuesday night all summer - a new dance style is taught every week. It is very populare, especially among adults from 40 and up, which I think is really and asset as this group op people normally are not as active as the younger generation. Maybe this could inspire your concept to be developed even further?

Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Thanks for sharing your experience Tanja! The public dance class seems very interesting. If fitness instructors can help, it will be much faster and easier to start this project.

In Japan people do the "same" exercise every time, like a ritual. Some companies (esp. factories) use it as a way of building morale and a sense of group unity. I guess this is probably too Japanese but it helps to create a shared experience among people.

Do you think people should try different exercises (like a dance course) every time or keep doing the same one?

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20090722i1.html

"The exercises can be done anywhere, at home for instance, provided there is enough space and a radio or TV. Neighbors sometimes get together in parks. Factory workers partake at the workplace. Most elementary school children do the exercises at school on sports day and in their neighborhood park during summer vacation."

Photo of An Old Friend

I understand how doing the "same" thing every day can create a shared experience. And ofcourse that might work for some. I cannot speak for the whole world or for all europeans for that matter. But at least I think for my home town, that doing new stuff at least once in a while would engage more people.
The dance classes are populare because you learn something. You can go there with your partner and learn something together. And it is something that you can "bring home" and do on your own.
But I think it is a good idea keeping some focus, maybe dance or yoga, gymnastics, soccer, etc. Maybe all of them, just different places in the city?

Also I think for my home town at least it would be better getting people out to meet in parks or squares than making the exercises at home through radio. People are home too much - they urge for having things to attend outside and get an opportunity to be among people. At least during summer - in winter it would be impossible. Maybe the concept could have both - outside during summer, radio during winter?

Photo of Johan Löfström

If difficult choreography for beginners it becomes a threshold for jumping in to join.

If you need instructors/tutors it becomes less scalable.

A music track on whatever radio/cd/mp3/medium with the spoken instructions embedded make it possible to startup in any city at first week of launch!

But it could also be designed to inspire random spontaneous dancing/acting/motion, to decrease difficulty and increase the FUN! :)

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