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Sqord Sqramble is On: 5 ideas to keep moving in Seattle

The 2017 Sqord Sqramble is underway! For the next four weeks, Sqord teams from around the country are competing in a virtual trek across the U.S.: from Seattle to San Francisco to Nashville to Chicago and finally landing in New York City.  Each team’s Sqord Activity Points will be converted into ‘distance’ gained, seeing who will reach each of our 6 cities first.  Every team earns a virtual badge in the Sqord app as they reach each destination. The overall Sqramble Champ will be crowned by being the first team to reach the Golden Gate bridge.


Some City Inspired Ideas

As teams start off on their wild adventure, here are some suggestions of unique ways you might earn Sqord points in each of those cities (or at least pretend you are).

Let’s start right here in Seattle.

Here’s five quick ideas of how you might move and play in the Emerald City.

  1. Take a hike…right in the middle of the city. The loop trail at  Discovery Park is nearly 3-miles long.  Not only do you get to tromp through forestland, but you can run right up on the shore of the Puget Sound or go dig in a big sand pit for a bit of extra playtime.
  1. Get on your bike. The Burke Gilman trail is a 90-mile paved bike path that runs along the Fremont Cut, through the University of Washington campus, alongside Lake Washington and all the way out to Bothell. It’s an easy and fun way to see all parts of the city.
  1. Jump on a kayak or a paddleboard. Seattleites love their water whether they are on Lake Union, Lake Washington or the Puget Sound. There’s no better way to take in the views while having some fun in the sun.
  1. Go climbing…inside. While Seattle is surrounded by majestic mountains like Mount Rainier and the Olympic Peninsula, indoor rock-climbing walls like the one at REI, make it a year-round activity.
  1. March to the Match. Before every home game, meet up in Occidental Park to join tons of other Sounders FC fans. Together, you can ‘march’ all the way to Century Link Field – chanting all the way.


Enjoy your adventure…see you in Boulder!










A Family that Sqords Together

(this article was first published in Providence Heart Beat, a publication of Providence Health Care)

The Sqord activity program for elementary school students in Spokane and Stevens counties has had unanticipated rewards that extend well beyond the classroom.


“When my daughter was given a Sqord, I quickly realized I wanted one as well,” says Pamela Starbuck, whose daughter Eliana is a student at Jeerson Elementary.  Pamela bought Sqord trackers for herself and her younger daughter so the three could enjoy family competition.

“My mom’s in third place,” Eliana shares. “She has more points than Mrs. Goodey.” (Sarah Goodey is a fitness and health specialist with Spokane Public Schools.)

“My daughters definitely come home from school sweatier than before the Sqord project,” Pamela says. “They are naturally early risers, but now they get extra points for dressing and straightening up the house before school.”

Healthy doses of exercise have become part of the family’s routine. Eliana’s father, Scott, is an avid Sqord supporter and has taken up distance cycling as part of his fitness regimen. “We’re making activity a family goal and encouraging each other,” Pamela says. “We even became a one-car family and now walk whenever possible.”

Fighting Childhood Diabetes Through Fun

Childhood obesity has been the leading health concern in kids for a number of years for good reason. According to a study by the Journal of the American Medical Association, the percentage of children ages 6 to 11 years in the United States who were considered obese increased from 7 percent in 1980 to nearly 18 percent in 2012. The percentage of kids ages 12 to 19 who were considered obese increased from 5 percent to nearly 21percent over the same period.

Associated health risks

Exacerbating the concern over childhood obesity are the greater health risks that come with obesity, such as Type 2 diabetes. Traditionally, Type 2 diabetes was referred to as “adult diabetes” given that it is often associated with inactivity and obesity. But now that we see greater levels of obesity in kids, and decreased activity levels as screens occupy more of kids’ days, Type 2 diabetes has become a true childhood concern. In fact, childhood diabetes has increased by nearly 30 percent in the past 15 years. Most children who develop Type 2 diabetes have a family member with the disease:

  • 45–80 percent have a parent with Type 2 diabetes
  • 74–90 percent report at least one affected first- or second-degree relative

First Lady’s program inspires kids to move

New programs help shine a spotlight on the need to get kids up and moving more during their tween and teen years. First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative has inspired efforts in schools and neighborhoods to get kids up and moving. In fact, 11 million kids attend schools that are part of the Let’s Move! Active Schools program where they strive to make 60 minutes of physical activity a day the norm. The NFL’s Play 60 campaign leverages the power of celebrity to encourage active play for at least an hour a day, building greater awareness and encouragement to get up and play.

Even with these initiatives, kids are still drawn to screens and virtual worlds as their go-to sources for play.

Sqord inspires play away from a screen


What if you could take kids’ love for video games and turn it on its head in a way that encourages them to get outside and play together in the real world?

Sqord is trying to do just that. One part social community, one part fitness tracker, one part game – Sqord tracks movement in the real world and converts it into Sqord Activity Points that kids can use in the Sqord app to unlock cool new features such as messaging and sending high-fives to friends, upgrading their PowerMe avatars and much more. Learn more about the activity benefits of Sqord.

Keeping kids active is one of the best ways to fight childhood diabetes. And while National Diabetes Month serves as a reminder of the importance for getting outside and moving, Sqord is a new way to motivate active play every single day.

Sqord is now available on Amazon individually or in dual packs that encourage real world play with friends.

Learn more about diabetes in children:

American Diabetes Association Preventing Type 2 Diabetes in Children

Providence Oregon Healthy Kids Program

Swedish Diabetes Education Center