KUALA LUMPUR: MALAYSIANS who are having a hard time trying to motivate themselves to exercise now have support to goad them to go for long walks or runs with a new app called Walk-A-Win (WaW).
It gives incentives and perks to its users to stay physically healthy.
WaW, a real-time gaming fitness and nutritional mobile application, is fully supported by youth volunteer community iM4U.
It was created by Rekaplus Diversified Sdn Bhd at the request of the Malaysian Association of Telehealth, which mooted the project, said Walk-A-Win chairman Dr M.S. Bavan at a press conference at The Malaysian Global Innovation & Creativity Centre (MAGIC) in Cyberjaya recently.
“We are happy iM4U is supporting the app as we aim to lower obesity rates among Malaysians by making physical activity entertaining for all age groups.”
When more Malaysians start walking and reduce their reliance on their vehicles, this will also help reduce carbon emissions and help in our fight for environment protection,” he said.
A recent health study showed that 44 per cent of men and 49 per cent of women in Malaysia were obese. Malaysia is ranked first in Southeast Asia for having the most overweight people and WaW could help to increase the physical activity of Malaysians who are battling obesity, he said.
“The app, which is available for both iOS and Android smart phones, has an inbuilt contest that goes with a storyline. It will let users know how many steps they have walked in a day, and how long they walked and have fun gaming concepts too.
“There are several levels and users will be given points for completing each level.
“The points can be redeemed for gifts. This means that anyone can win prizes by just walking,” he said, adding that the app was free and could be downloaded from the Google Play store.
“We are targeting at least 500,000 users within the next six months who will get plenty of chances to win prizes.
“There will be daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly challenges and users stand an equal chance of winning prizes in the contest. Those who register on the Google App store will only have to reveal their gender, age and email.
“Users will be asked to answer simple questions about health and general knowledge to win more points, though the most of the points can be won by simply walking regularly and leading an active lifestyle. Users are encouraged to walk 10,000 steps a day,” he said.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Mah Siew Keong joined MaGIC chief operating officer Norita Jaafar, iM4U chief operating officer Azlan Rudy Malik, and Bavan at the launch of the WaW app.
Also present were 200 iM4U volunteers who were among the first to download the app on their smartphones.
Most of the volunteers were college students aged 18 and above from Universiti Tenaga Nasional (Kajang Branch), and Kirkby’s International College (Cyberjaya).