We are excited to announce our new partnership with Sportside, ‘the connect and play’ app, helping people discover local activities based on their sporting interests! This innovative partnership will pilot in Maidstone over the next coming months now that our Family Miles are back up and running following lockdown restrictions.
Here at The Mason Foundation, we are passionate about empowering people to take that first step to physical activity. We recognise that for many, being active is not that simple. Whilst there are undoubtedly a myriad of sports and ways to participate in exercise, many people often feel that these are out of their reach. They worry that they will not be able to keep up or worry about what they will wear or who they will exercise with. The who, what and where often form invisible barriers that hinder people from taking part in physical activity.
Both The Mason Mile and Sportside recognise these factors, highlighting a natural synergy that attempts to break down these barriers and get people active. The Mason Mile achieves this by bridging the gap between inactivity and 15 minutes of light, regular exercise – providing a fun, safe environment for communities to just come along, without the need for any posh kit or equipment and do ‘Their Mile, Their Way.’ The Sportside app helps link the two seamlessly together. Sportside is a free platform designed with the purpose of connecting people where individuals can find their ‘sporting match’ by age, ability, and location. This tackles the issue of ‘who’, by guiding users to The Family Mile where they can exercise alongside others based on sporting interest and ability.
Excitingly, our very own Maidstone Ambassadors will be working at the heart of this partnership, taking on a dual role as both a Family Mile Ambassador and a Community Captain. The role of the Community Captains will be to regularly post about their Family Mile walks, helping to motivate and encourage other users to come along and take that first step to activity by walking with them!
But what happens after they have taken that first step?
Once community members have integrated ‘Their Mile’ into their lifestyle, many will likely find they have gained an appetite for more. Sportside therefore not only supports the who but they also accommodate the what. Our new partnership with Sportside offers that next natural step for individuals who may be looking to explore other sporting activities in their area.
It may be that our Milers would like to try a team sport, join a community club, or progress from walking a mile to jogging a mile and would like to find a jogging partner. They can then navigate the ‘one stop’ app to discover the best match for them in their community, with the help of our cross trained Ambassadors offering a referral to the next sporting step!
We are very much looking forward to piloting this partnership in Maidstone and working with Sportside to help improve the wellbeing of the Maidstone community. Covid-19 has brought into sharp focus the issues surrounding physical and mental health and the desperate need to act. Our partnership with Sportside has come at the perfect time to do so as lockdown restrictions ease and we approach the warmer, sunnier months! With our shared ethos of getting people more active, our combined forces are sure to put a spring back in people’s step and take action in addressing these incredibly important issues!