1. What is “Walk Your A.S. Off”?
We hold virtual walk events to get moving and “Walk our A.S.’s off!” in order to stay active to keep our joints working as well as possible. Most people with Spondylitis benefit from regular exercise. Unfortunately, many of us (including me), don’t do too much. Walking is a fantastic form of low impact exercise – so let’s get moving!
2. How do I join Walk Your A.S. Off?
You can start by joining an existing team, or by forming a new team. You can register by going to our brand new registration page, where you can choose your team, and get your log in to record your steps and progress.
3.How do I find a team to join if I don’t want to form one?
Team Captains are active on the Walk Your A.S.Off Facebook page, or email us and we will assist you in getting on a team that will suite you (email – WalkYourASoff@gmail.com). New in 2014 we will have a private Facebook group just for team captains. Once we receive your registration you will be emailed a link and an invite
4. How do I form a team?
Since we’ll be tracking our steps from May 1st until May 31st, please try to get your team ready to log steps starting on Launch day.
5. Do you have to have a form of Spondylitis to participate?
No, absolutely not. In fact we encourage participation from everyone. “Walk Your A.S. Off” is a great way to speak with people about Ankylosing Spondylitis and encourage friends and family to support our awareness efforts in a fun and healthy way.
6. Does each step count?
Yes! With a pedometer you can easily track how many steps you take every day without even thinking about it. Below are some links to pedometers in a price range from $6 – $75. A simple and inexpensive pedometer will do the trick and keep you from the guess work of calculating how many steps you take per mile. For many of us we will do the best we can, but on some days it may only be the steps you take around the house. That’s fine. Your steps count as much as someone who is able to log 10,000 on a regular basis (that’s a lot of daily steps.) This isn’t just for people with a form of Spondylitis, anyone can join and support a team to help us to our race to Mars and race to a cure!
7. How do I report the steps?
Simple, just log in to the Walk Your A.S. off website by clicking on ‘Sign In’ and ‘Your Page’ link will appear in the top right of the screen. This is where you can record and manage your steps and progress. How easy is that?
8. What is the best pedometer to buy? There are many good pedometers that can be found either on websites like Amazon or at your local stores like WalMart, Target, or Sporting Goods Stores. Prices range from $5 for a very simple pendulum pedometer to more complex digital versions that track steps as well as distance and calories burned. Even the simplest pedometer works although you may need to adjust it as the documentation for your model suggests.
9. Do I have to purchase a pedometer?
No, you don’t, but having one allows you to track every step you take during the day. If you’d like to simply track a walk route you do, then the basic conversion is 2000 steps to the mile.
10. What if I am not able to participate one day?
It may feel like you cannot participate on days where you are flaring or in too much pain. We understand. The hope of this walk is to get us moving a bit more than we “normally” would but some days that just may not be possible. Do not worry about your daily contribution numbers. Think instead of being part of the greater group and team. No individual step numbers will be published except for people who make it to the individual Million Step goal (more on this below.) Also please keep in mind that this is why we are suggesting pedometers. Using a pedometer will allow you to contribute steps even on the bad days. Every step takes us closer to a broader awareness of Ankylosing Spondylitis.
11. Can I join anytime?
Yes. We’d love to have all teams formed and ready to go on May 1st, but we know that there are people who might not be able to start right away, particularly if they didn’t know about the walk. We want people to join in. Every step counts!
12. Is there a wheelchair equivalent?
Yes! You may track your distance and convert it to steps. Activity is the goal and we understand the need to make accommodations. Also check into the fitbit flex that has been reviewed to work great for people in a wheelchair.
13. Why take the challenge?
There are so many good reasons to get moving and walk but by joining together as a community we show we work hard to stay as healthy as possible and that it is a difficult endeavor for us to do so. This is a small grassroots effort but perhaps next year after we show the world that we can do this, we can turn it into something that helps us raise money for a cure! A cure is always our goal. As people with Spondylitis and the friends and family who support us we need to take action and find ways to get to that goal. By participating simply because it is good for us – we take a stance as a community. By participating we work to build something that helps us take concrete steps to our eventual big goal – a cure for AS.
14. What is the Million Step Challenge?
It is possible to walk a million steps in 61 days. It most definitely is not for everyone but it is a great challenge for active friends and family and people with AS who have a doctor’s approval. To be able to have bragging rights and entry into the Million Steppers Club you are looking at approximately 16,000 steps per day or 8 miles or daily 10,000 doctor recommended daily steps and a few long weekend walks.
15. Does it cost me money to participate?
No. The goal of the walk is to walk and be the healthiest ASer’s around.
17. Is this a fundraiser like most walks are?
No, the walk was not set up to primarily be a fundraiser but in year two (2013) we added opportunities and materials for those who wish to fundraise. Check out the fundraising information under the Donate tab for more information.
*Before beginning any new exercise program, consult your physician or physical therapist. They can help provide modifications to suit your particular needs. Ask which exercises you should do and then check to see that you are doing them correctly.