Today is the No Elevators Day (NED) and throughout Europe we are celebrating and encouraging all citizens to use the stairs instead of elevators. A simple gesture with immense transformative power.
NED is part of the NowWeMOVE, a European campaign (developed by ISCA) that aims to promote sport and physical activity. The overall vision of the NowWeMOVE (NWM) campaign is to get 100 million more Europeans physically active by the year 2020.
In Denmark NED has also left its mark. In the morning ISCA staff entered the Parliament building and “sealed” for a few minutes the famous elevator that never stops.
We were greeted by Rasmus Nordqvist, spokesperson of the political party Alternativet, where we had the opportunity to interview him and hear more about his position on the need to be more active. Emphasising that simple gestures as using stairs instead of the elevators also makes a difference in day-to-day working of Parliament, he said.
“In my everyday life, unfortunately, I’m not doing any sports and that’s also why it’s important for me to do as much activity as I can in my everyday situations.”
But Denmark is a very active country overall, in his view, and the Danes play an important role in setting an example to other countries.
“We have a huge role to inspire [others] because we are really active. We have designed our cities so they are welcoming bike transportation instead of cars, and I think a lot of cities could be inspired by that… We can do a lot of things in simple planning to make it a lot easier [to use active transportation] and I think we have had good results in Denmark.”
The transforming power of the NED continued from the Parliament to Rigshospitalet, where we met Christoffer Nielsen Faurskov who works with communication at the hospital. Christoffer shared that he, too, tries to use the stairs whenever possible, stressing that it is important in our daily lives to opt for ways to keep ourselves physically active.
Join us too and use the stairs instead of the elevators. No Elevators Day is celebrated today, but every day we are faced with our choice. Today we made ours: The stairs. And you?