Many of us feel that we
need to do more to protect the environment.
The chances are that you
probably already participate in behaviours that try to minimise your impact on
the world around you: recycling regularly, taking public transport, opting for
paperless billing or driving an electric car.
It’s win-win gym power: the user gets a great workout and the chance to work towards tangible rewards, the gym owner gets massively reduced electricity bills, and we don’t have to burn fossil fuels and harm the environment in order to do it.
How can exercise equipment generate electricity?
When we workout we
At the moment, that
energy is wasted; it does nothing but what if there was a way to take that
energy and send it to a battery? What if
the power in that battery could be turned into the electricity that can power
not just the gym itself but the neighbourhood, too?
Energym can install its battery
system as new or retrofit the technology into existing equipment, so any gym
can become a human powered gym without the need to buy brand new kit.
If you’d like to find out more about what we’re doing or if you’d like a demonstration, get in touch.
What are the benefits of power generating exercise equipment?
It’s easy to talk about
the environmental benefits; they’re obvious.
“It’s simple: the less cricket we play at every level the fewer people
will watch it, the less they will come to the ground and pay to enter, the less
chance there is for young people to be inspired to take up the game.”
And it’s not just rain. A Japanese typhoon in 2019 took out some of
the Rugby World Cup Fixtures. Australian
bushfires at the start of 2020 affected the Australian Open. The Scottish ski industry could collapse within
50-years because of a lack of snow.
You don’t have to be an
athlete or a professional sports fan to feel the effect of climate change on fitness.
If you exercise regularly,
then you may also find your favourite activities affected by climate change. Bustle
reported that Nike
has teamed up with Climate Change Lab to explore how climate change is
affecting fitness and exercise.
They found that temperature
plays a key role in determining whether marathon runners clock their fastest
times: their speed reduces when the outdoor temperature rises.
It’s as true for amateur
runners as much as the professionals: you won’t be able to smash those personal
bests when the mercury is so high.
Warmer temperatures also mean you have a smaller timeframe in which to
workout. At the moment, we’re told to
avoid being out during the hottest part of the day (often 12 pm until 3pm),
but that could have to be extended. This
may make it more difficult to exercise outdoors if you have a busy day job.
It’s not just those of us
inside, either. In the UK, we’re not as well prepared for extreme heat. Our
buildings are designed to keep the warm air inside. Your gym may not be able to install the level
of air conditioning required to keep you cool during your workout. An increase in operating costs may be
reflected in your membership, too.
Outdoor runners, walkers and
cyclists will also find that they’re inhaling more polluted air than may be
safe. Air quality levels in urban areas are declining largely due to traffic.
Hot weather can put a real strain on the human
body. It makes those with health
conditions vulnerable but it can also mean that fit and healthy people can
develop heat-related health issues. There have been several cases of even high-profile
athletes dying from complications related to heatstroke.
We also have to remember that most gyms are in urban
areas. Urban areas suffer from urban
heat island effect where the building materials and infrastructure create
literal hot spots which could be up to 5 degrees hotter than the surrounding
Coca Cola cannot be
considered a sustainable company because what it is doing right now will have a
devastating impact on the environment for many years to come.
Although, it’s not
unrealistic to assume that it will have to change that policy. Before COVID-19, single-use plastic was the
big enemy and undoubtedly will be again.
Despite what Coca Cola is saying now, it’s likely its already looking
into more sustainable options because in business you have to give the consumer
the product they want or they’ll go elsewhere.
Gyms are no
Does Sustainability Mean for Gyms?
People don’t just want
sustainable products. They want
eco-friendlier services, too. In recent
years, there’s been a change in focus when it comes to why people exercise.
People aren’t only fixated on getting that result as they are on having
an experience and of feeling part of a community. Add into this the move
towards self-care, mindfulness, hygge, and veganism, etc, and there’s an
obvious need for connection and meaning in the things we do day-to-day. Sustainability plays right into this because
it’s about more than just what you’re doing; it’s about reducing the impact of right
now on the future.
It’s not to say that you
should throw out your MMA cage and start building a hot yoga studio, but you
can draw some lessons from more environmentally enlightened ways of thinking.
And there’ll always be
an intersection between fitness, health, and the environment.
For example, processed
food contributes to climate change; it also contributes to obesity, chronic
health conditions and early death in adults. All things that the NHS say can be massively
reduced by regular exercise. We know that obese
people tend to have bigger carbon footprints, too.
Poor air quality caused
by pollution in urban areas causes illness and an increased risk of death. If you’re going to the gym to be healthier but
then stepping out into toxic air pollution, then what’s the point? We also know that a gym can have poor air
quality because of cacogenic
equipment and industrial cleaning supplies.
You might also find that by making some small changes such as installing energy-efficient
lights, installing a smart-water system or selling sustainable products like
reusable water bottles and merchandise, you’ll have more money to invest back
into the gym.
It’ll help attract new customers as your
gym will stand out from the competition.
Word-of-mouth from advocates of environmentalism can be invaluable in encouraging
other people they know to try your services.
It can be hard to imagine the consequences
of climate change when so much of it seems to happen overseas (bush fires,
deforestation, sea pollution, etc) but your business can be affected by
events many miles from your location.
Coronavirus has shown how vulnerable the UK is to global emergencies. Adapting
your business to an eco-friendly approach isn’t just about
aligning with a mission statement or looking good for PR, it’s also about
taking responsibility for the part you play in creating environmental damage
and reduce the risk of it becoming the next global crisis.
Clients and consumers
are more environmentally aware than ever, and they’re choosing products and
services that align with their beliefs and lifestyles.
Green marketing helps
businesses create the stories behind their brand by delivering a positive environmental
message that’s not just about building a customer or client base, but about
creating a community.
is Green Marketing?
Green marketing is a way
of promoting environmentally friendly products or services to customers,
clients or investors. You might also hear it called eco-marketing or
Companies Are Using Green Marketing?
UK cosmetics retailer Lush announced in 2019 that it no longer uses eggs in its cosmetics because of cruelty in the egg industry.
The decision strengthens the company’s reputation on animal and environmental rights. It will have pleased many of its existing customers as well as attracting new customers who also align to that viewpoint.
Environmentalism is at the forefront of what Lush does and by offering environmentally responsible products, it’s marketing is made easier and more coherent because it knows its target audience cares about the same things it does.
Lush has built a strong brand identity that goes beyond just nice smelling products.
Patagonia is an outdoor gear and clothing store famous for its stand on sustainability and environmental protection. Its mission statement is to “build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, and inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.”
The Content Writers
website points out one important thing about Patagonia – the honesty about
its shortcomings. It
still relies on fossil fuels for some of its items
but is working on reducing and eliminating that dependency.
Other examples of green marketing companies include:
The Body Shop
Impact can Green Marketing Have on Your Brand?
For example, you could add energy-generating
equipment to your gym.
Imagine the savings if you turned human energy into usable electricity
to power your premises or neighbourhood. You’d be helping to protect the planet
from carbon emissions and getting free energy.
Green marketers understand the importance of good PR. A brand can easily demonstrate its clean credentials by engaging with local and global environmental issues: supporting charities, donating volunteers to communities, developing new and innovative products and services.
Good deeds don’t have to go unsung. The environmental angle is ideal for social media and press releases; it shows a company is putting its time and money where its mission statement is.
It may cost more money upfront and has to be part of a long-term campaign.
Companies have to be genuine in their pursuit of a green reputation. Greenwashing (where a business either exaggerates or fabricates its environmental credentials) can cause serious damage to a brand. You don’t want your customers questioning your integrity.
You have to hold your company to a higher standard in the marketplace and that’s a challenge for some people.
do You Do Green Marketing?
Marketing tells the
story of your brand. Green marketers
understand that people want to feel a connection to the products they’re buying.
It could be out of a genuine desire to save the planet but it could also be a
way of alleviating environmental guilt – the penance for driving a
petrol-guzzling car, for example.
Use eco-friendly packaging, non-toxic or
organic materials, biodegradable items, or things made from renewable sources
or easy to recycle
Go digital and reduce the amount of paper
Use eco-friendly energy sources like
solar power to show off green credentials and save money.
Find ways to carbon off-set. It’s not a perfect method but it is one way
of reducing your impact on the environment.
Create products that can be re-used,
easily fixed or conveniently recycled.
Discourage the use of products that will quickly end up in a landfill.
Think about the entire journey of a
product from concept and design through to transport and production and look
for green opportunities at each stage. Include this in your brand’s story.
Join up with like-minded companies and
Be honest about where you’re at and where
you’re heading. You can’t save the
planet overnight so don’t sell what you can’t deliver.
Green marketing makes it
easier for customers and clients to engage with your brand. As well as giving them the option to buy
eco-friendlier products, you’re also helping to boost your sales, increase
brand visibility and create a community around your product.
And whichever way you
look at it, building a more environmentally friendly business is the right
thing to do.
Money could be raised to
help pay for the mix of grants and loans through several taxes including
digital tax, carbon tax, and a non-recyclable tax.
Whilst the deal does
have its critics, overall, it’s been well received. The devastation of COVID-19 across Europe, in
particular, highlights how global problems can create serious problems in EU
Guardian reports that in her speech, Ursula von der Leyen said
“sooner or later we will find a vaccine for the coronavirus. But there is no
vaccine for climate change. Therefore [we] need a recovery plan designed for
But with the US and China – the world’s two biggest polluters – ducking out of long-term environmental commitments, it’s difficult to say how effective the EU’s green policy will be in the wider scheme of things, but it’s a good start and it’s good to see a political institution recognize the value of a central green policy and not just as a short-term recovery plan but for the good of everyone for decades to come.
It would be great to see people continuing to cycle post-lockdown. Many of us will have forgotten the sense of freedom and joy of riding through neighbourhoods, along country lanes and alongside rivers the way we did as children.
Whether you’re an age-old biker or a reluctant newbie, there’s never been a better time to start cycling. COVID-19 has put the brakes on many celebrations in 2020 but there are two dates to put into your calendar for June: World Bicycle Day is June 3rd and Bike Week is running between June 6thand 14th.
For Bike Week, Cycling UK along with Cycling Scotland has put together several activities that you can participate in whilst respecting social distancing measures.
Why is Cycling Good for Us?
Cycling is great for beginners.
Most people will have mastered the basic skills as children.
It’s worth brushing up on your bike safety skills, but the actual act of riding a bike is straightforward. It’s a skill unlikely to have been forgotten even many years later.
A basic bike is relatively inexpensive to buy. Cycling has a low barrier of entry: you don’t need to spend a small fortune to get started. Bikes can often be bought second-hand and you may already have one in a shed or garage.
In 2019, the UK Government declared a climate emergency. The effects of global warming are becoming more and more visible throughout the world in everything from flooding, increased sea temperatures to drought and coral bleaching.
Cars are a huge threat to the environment. They’re one of the biggest contributors to poor air quality and carbon emissions. We all rely on them to get around but the damage they’re doing to our health and the planet cannot be understated. Cycling is one way of reducing the impact of those emissions by using peddle power instead of horsepower.
Public transport outside London can be sporadic and expensive. Cycling offers people a carbon-free way of getting around for less.
Whether you do it indoors or outdoors, cycling is one way of playing your part in saving the planet without feeling as if you’ve had to give something up.
How Can You Take Part in Bike Week?
You can still celebrate bike week even during the lockdown. The Government recently relaxed the rules on exercising outdoors so there’s no reason not to get outside and go for a bike ride.
You don’t have to go far, either. It can be a quick ride down to the shops, around a local park or a quick trip around your neighbourhood.
UK Cycling has launched 7-days of cycling to coincide with bike week. It wants people to aim to ride every day for a week and then to share their activity via a photo, video or story using #BikeWeek and #7DaysofCycling on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. If you can’t do the full 7 days, don’t worry. You can join in as much or as little as you like.
Selected participants will also receive a prize.
We’re looking forward to following the hashtags this week and to see where everyone is heading for their rides. Remember to be considerate to other road and pavement users during this difficult period and ensure that your bike is safe to use. You can find bike safety tips on the UK cycling website.