Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. Working with the Outdoor Industries Association (OIA), Ordnance Survey (OS) has brought together more than 50 outdoor organisations, brands and retailers from across Europe.
Alongside experts, athletes and TV stars such as Iwan Thomas, Ben Fogle, Julia Bradbury, Sean Conway and Professor Greg Whyte will contribute to the hub with a variety of content including a series of lively daily tips, challenges, puzzles, blogs, videos, virtual tours and activities to keep the young and old, and everyone in-between, physically active during these unprecedented times.
The new hub offers:
- Live broadcasts from OS GetOutside Champions as well as other athletes, experts and celebrities
- Home-based challenges and fun online events
- Virtual reality walks, tips and advice for learning map, survival and camping skills
- Podcasts, movies, books and magazine recommendations
- Regular live Q&A sessions with OS GetOutside Champions, athletes and experts
- Loads of outdoor kit prizes from Outdoor Industries Association members and partners
For this European-wide initiative, OS has rebranded its successful GetOutside content hub as GetOutside Inside and is launching the hub this Thursday with a step challenge. Former world champion athlete turned TV presenter, Iwan Thomas will be inviting people from across Great Britain and Europe to join him from midday on Thursday 9th to climb stairs or step on the spot and record the number of steps they do.
OS has created a calculator especially for this challenge that converts the number of steps you have done into how far up a building or mountain you have climbed. It is hoped the effort will create a new World Record for the number of people doing steps simultaneously. Britain’s national mapping agency will also provide advice to people through the GetOutside Inside website on how they can measure their steps.
Former world champion athlete turned TV presenter, Iwan Thomas says: “This is a terrific effort from Ordnance Survey and the outdoor industry. It’s a very weird situation we are living in, and so it is especially important that while we isolate ourselves to support the NHS and government’s efforts to overcome this dreadful virus, we all look after our mental and physical health and the mental and physical health of others.
“GetOutside Inside aims to educate, entertain and inspire, and I urge people, no matter what their age or ability, to get involved and stay healthy. Start with the step challenge this Thursday and see how it goes. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if in the future we could tell people how during the Covid-19 pandemic we all climbed Mount Everest in our homes? Visit the website, sign up and get involved and GetOutside Inside.”
Andrew Denton, CEO of the Outdoors Industry Association, says: “The outdoor industry, like so many others, is being deeply affected by this crisis. Typically, this time of year in the run up to Easter is the start of the outdoor season for many of us and what is happening is hitting businesses and people who want to be outdoors hard. But the outdoor industry and its community is nothing if not resilient, as is shown by this excellent initiative.”
OS’s GetOutside initiative was launched in 2016 to help more people benefit from the many rewards of being outdoors. Before the Covid-19 virus struck, it was inspiring more than 6 million people a year with their outdoor adventures.
Ordnance Survey Leisure Managing Director, Nick Giles, says: “While the nation is on lockdown, we have an important role to play in keeping people connected to the outdoors, to nature and activity that is good for body and mind. We all need to comply with the Government’s message of only leaving the house if necessary, so to keep those connections with the outdoors and to keep ourselves active in our homes, we must be more creative with what we do.
“We have been overwhelmed by the volume of industry players, experts and celebrities wanting to join in and support us in this. Interest has come from across Europe, so we are making all content available in Europe through the It’s great out there website.”