Take Steps Toward a Healthier Life

By Kylie Tomlin, Cancer Research Training Award Student
Winner of OHS' "Stepping for Stars" campaign.

Lauren Mora-Smith, research technician in the Basic Science Program, collected all five stars in a week through the "Stepping for Stars" campaign and won a lunchbox. 

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is promoting wellness by encouraging individuals to take the stairs. In an effort to increase participation in this program, NIH has teamed up with Occupational Health Services (OHS). OHS is placing NIH-sponsored “Take the Stairs” stickers on stair entrances, stair exits, and elevators.

In addition to the stickers, OHS has launched a “Stepping for the Stars” campaign. For this campaign, OHS is choosing a different building each week and placing stars in the stairwells. Each day, the stars are a different color. OHS is rewarding employees who choose to take the stairs and collect all five colored stars (one for each day of the week) with a prize. So far, the program has been successful, based on feedback OHS has received from employees who have participated.

This mission effectively highlights the benefits of incorporating physical activity into each day, including lowering the risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes; toning calves, thighs, and gluteus maximus; and aiding in weight control, brain health, and academic achievement. Other related benefits include reducing energy consumption.