I was teaching at a school in Wandsworth a few months ago and one of the students asked me why I hadn’t been taught coding at school. I responded:
“Because the internet hadn’t been invented yet.”
Apart from making me feel a million years old, it made me realise that we’re living through an extraordinary time that will surely be known as ‘The Information Age’. There were of course pro’s and con’s to living in a world where we were sold half-truths that the Britannica Encylopedia could neither confirm nor deny (for those of you born post-internet invention, it’s a really big book, like Wikipedia but with no Google search option). It wasn’t that long ago that tobacco companies were running ads featuring doctors telling people that tobacco was perfectly safe.
That said, now that we do have this wealth of information, literally at our fingertips, it boggles my mind that the Internet has generated a mind-set that appears to have completely lost the ability to question the information we are sold.
John Oliver explains this concept far more eloquently than I can in this very funny YouTube video, but if you don’t have 19 minutes 27 seconds to spare, just skip to 14 minutes 15 seconds for a little chuckle before continuing on with your day.
More than ever, people are happy to skim over the fine print in favour of an easier option or a ‘quick fix’ result, and in this respect, the health and wellness sector reigns supreme. There are still weight loss programmes claiming that replacing entire meals with protein shakes is a good idea. One of the really big hitters even has a giant pizza plastered over their home page (I have nothing against pizza, but if I was encouraging weight loss, it probably wouldn’t be my number one choice). Unsurprisingly, these programmes are not all that keen to publish long-term success rate statistics alongside their photographs of overweight people (dead behind the eyes) transformed into a barely recognisable versions of themselves.
Doing something for a finite period of time where the results are instantaneous is incentive enough to keep going (‘Drop 2 dress sizes in 2 weeks!’ ...yes please!) but the ugly truth is that real change only happens when we look at long-term manageable goals with a strong support system to reel us back in when we start to falter …it’s all well and good getting to that first exercise class, but returning week in week out is the hard part.
So we’ve come up with an idea that we hope will encourage people to make exercise as habitual as making a cup of tea first thing in the morning – but we’re going to need your help!
Here’s how it works:
If you know someone who struggles to find the motivation to exercise or is getting back into exercise, we want you to do your best to encourage that person to come to class. If that person makes it to class at least once a week for 8 consecutive weeks, we’ll give you a FREE monthly pass (4 weeks of unlimited Just Dance UK classes) …easy right? Wrong!
It’s a bleak, wintry Tuesday evening and you’re just about to leave for class when your friend calls you:
'I’m not coming - work was terrible, the trains were late, the kids are fighting
...the last thing I feel like doing is dancing.’
How do you turn the situation around? We’d love for you to embark on this journey with us, share your ideas and let us know what works/doesn’t work. It’s not going to be easy but …eyes on the prize people, eyes on the prize!