Artwork encourages staff to take the stairs
They popped up like spring daffodils, seemingly overnight; the colorful, motivational and informational artwork that appeared in Stairwell 7 in Building 10. But they have a background, backed by scientific research.
It started with the Surgeon General's Call to Action in 2015. Research showed the health benefits of increasing daily activities, such as taking the stairs instead of elevators. Additional studies showed that improvements to a stairwell are an effective motivator for behavior changes.
So, the Stair Beautification Project was created. For the stairwell in Building 10, that meant a joint effort between the Commissioned Corps, Medical Arts Branch and the Division of Amenities and Transportation Services with funding from the Office of Research Facilities. This group combined knowledge about physical activity as well as health communication to create inspirational, factual and statistical information on the stairwells of all 15 flights.
According to Fogerty International Center Deputy Director Dr. Peter Kilmarx, who co-led the project, other NIH stairwells may be beautified in the future.
Taking the stairs has the double benefit of increasing health and lowering energy consumption. Plus, it requires little additional time, once you get into the habit, or can even save time.
Start a new habit and take the stairs!