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No matter how big or small, strong or weak, every muscle matters. It's why we use protein in our drinks to help keep them well nourished, while you keep them active. Healthy muscles play an essential role in whole body health well beyond movement. As we age muscles deteriorate, and for some disease accelerates this process at an alarming rate.
With this in mind we are delighted to partner with the Muscle Help Foundation to help raise awareness for those with Muscular Dystrophy (MD) and join their mission of providing 657 transformational experiences, ‘Muscle Dreams’, to beneficiaries whose muscles are in some way broken.
Too often we take our muscles for granted, forgetting how they play an integral part in our lives. For those with MD and allied neuromuscular conditions, they never forget their importance. MD is a genetic condition which progressively weakens and wastes muscles. In the UK alone more than 70,000 people have MD. Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, the most common form, leaves the majority of those affected wheelchair-bound by just 11 years old and Michael McGrath, CEO and founder of MHF, was 18 when diagnosed with Limb Girdle Muscular Dystrophy.
Despite this, the remarkable Michael McGrath is the first disabled person to have reached both the North and South Poles and every year his charity delivers life-changing, personalised experiences, known as ‘Muscle Dreams’, to children and young people (aged 8 to 28) with MD.
To celebrate the partnership between Upbeat and the Muscle Help Foundation we are launching the #657challenge to encourage the nation to look after each and every one of their 657 muscles - the approximate amount of muscles in the human body.
The challenge itself is quick and easy and can be done anywhere. Simply drop from standing into a sitting position and back up, all the while balancing a full cup of water on your head. The less water you spill, the more impressive. It’s a full-body test of mobility, strength, balance and coordination that will get all your muscles moving — and hopefully provide a few giggles.
HOW TO TAKE THE #657CHALLENGE
STEP 1: Fill a cup of water (to the brim if you’re confident).
STEP 2: From standing, hold the cup in place on your head with both hands (take one hand off if you have to but aim to keep both on the cup).
STEP 3: Bend your legs to lower yourself to the ground until you’re sitting fully cross-legged on the floor (bum must be in contact with the ground).
STEP 4: From sitting, drive back up off the floor without removing the cup from your head (this is where you might get a little water spillage).
STEP 5: Once you’re back standing, assess the spillage.
If you haven’t lost a drop that’s a good sign you’ve got exemplary mobility and muscle strength. If you now have a wet head or need to remove the cup and use a hand to help you get off the floor that’s fine too. Practice makes perfect and it’s a good daily drill to keep all your muscles moving.
HOW TO SPREAD THE WORD
Now you know how to do it, here’s how to challenge your friends, show your support for those with muscular dystrophy and raise awareness for the importance of our muscles in everyday life.
STEP 1: Take the #657challenge (make sure somebody’s filming you).
STEP 2: Upload the clip on your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page (or all three).
STEP 3: In the accompanying text tag your three nominations, include the hashtag #657challenge and mention how people can donate £5 to the Muscle Help Foundation via text message by texting MUSC13 £5 to 70070.
For example on Instagram and Facebook:
I nominate @xxx, @xxx and @xxx to take the #657challenge to raise awareness for The Muscle Help Foundation and support those with muscular dystrophy. You can donate to the charity by texting MUSC13 £5 to 70070. http://bit.ly/2ixuyGD
And here’s a shorter example for Twitter:
I nominate @xxxxxxxxx @xxxxxxxxxxx & @xxxxxxxxxxxxxx to take The #657Challenge. Text MUSC13 £5 to 70070 to donate.
Remember it’s not about succeeding or failing with the challenge, just about giving it a go. Need further inspiration and motivation? Search #657challenge to see how fellow muscle warriors are getting on with it.