Running is one of the most important exercises you should do in order to lead a fit and healthy lifestyle. You’ve heard this before, haven’t you? It’s a vital habit we should all adopt. But did you know that for some people, running is a luxury?
I’m talking about people with spinal cord injuries. These injuries can sometimes even be severe enough to paralyse them. Running to them is a dream.
But you can help make their dreams come true. And all you have to do is run.
Red Bull has organised a running event that is returning for its eighth year – the Wings For Life World Run! Anyone can be a part of this: runners and wheelchair users alike. You can run any distance, from anywhere in the world, with the rest of the world. Together as a community, you will run for those who cannot. But what does this mean?
100% of the entry fees from this event will be going into world-class spinal cord research and related clinical trials to help others around the world get up and run too. That’s right; you have the power to do this. And it starts with the simple download of an app.
As the pandemic turns our life virtual, this race event will be run (pun not intended) via a mobile application called the Wings For Life World Run App. At 7pm SGT on 9 May 2021, the run will commence globally. You can begin running wherever you are, and so will the people around the globe.
Your race will somewhat take the shape of that of Tom and Jerry (just minus all the violence and fighting, of course!). Since there is no physical finishing line, your race ends when a virtual Catcher Car from within the app catches up to you and overtakes you. 30 minutes into the race, the Catcher Car is released and cruises at 15km/h, as it begins chasing the participants. It gradually and steadily increases its speed until every participant is caught.
This keeps the exercise going and the competitive spirit raging! Getting caught marks the end of your race, and you will be declared a finisher of the Wings For Life World Run race!
A globe of community comes together in the efforts to help another. You may be running on your own, but through a simple app, you are connected to thousands of others around the world who are running alongside you. Isn’t it lovely? Technology has indeed come so far and has made the world a more accessible place to live and communicate in, and we’re blessed to be a part of this time and age.
And in this event, we are running to create an even better time and age where medical enhancements can occur and aren’t just miracles – medical enhancements that will restore normality in the ill. And what will it take for this to happen? A sense of community. A strive to help. A flame of compassion.
The pandemic has clearly rekindled our love for the outdoors and our love for exercise after having us bound to our homes for weeks and months. Hence, even global studies have shown that more people are running now than ever since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. A large-scale study conducted by ASICS, of which the publishing coincided with World Running Day 2020, also proved that many people run for the benefits it brings to mental health. And so should you.
This race could give you the mental cleanser you need as you bathe in the gentle hues of the setting sun, running along the Singapore River and absorbing the mesmerising skyline or along East Coast beach and admiring the vast sealine ahead. You witness the transformation of day into night, with the evening breeze embracing you and blowing your hair back.
Perfect? Yes. This is quite literally the perfect way to unwind, but it’s an experience that people with spinal cord injuries are deprived of. They don’t get to witness and feel all this. But you do, and on 9 May 2021, you will be helping these people to get a step closer to living that experience too.
“COVID-19 presented us with many restrictions. Fortunately, many of them are only temporary. People with spinal cord injuries, on the other hand, have to struggle with severe limitations throughout their lives. We want to change that. That’s why I’m excited about anyone joining us on May 9 and helping us to find a cure.”Anita Gerhardter, CEO of Wings for Life
To date, 700,000 participants from 195 countries have been recorded. A vast distance of 7 million kilometres has been run, and in the form of donations and fees, nearly SGD 48 million has been received by Wings for Life. But we can still make these figures bigger.
Here’s how: Start by downloading the Red Bull Wings for Life World Run App on App Store or Google Play and sign up for the race via the app. An entry fee of USD23.00 (or S$30.48) will be charged, but 100% of the proceeds will go to Wings for Life Spinal Cord Research Foundation.
Upon completing registration, be sure to join the Singapore team on the app or simply click here to be a part of the Wings for Life World Run Singapore Community. For any further information, do visit their website!
Come on, Singapore. We have never been ones to back away from a fight – especially one that helps people. And we won’t do it now either. Moreover, since we are talking about running, I would like to end off in true Flash fashion.
Run Singapore, run!
Visuals courtesy of Red Bull Wings For Life World Run.