Enterprise by Design gets Physical!

How to improve health and wellbeing using Tourism Activities

After a delicious meal of ham and chicken pie, I doubt any of our teams were expecting to get active during week four of Enterprise by Design. However, just a few minutes after starting our weekly session we got to doing burpees, the downward dog yoga position and jumping jacks to measure our physical activity!

Head of Sports Sciences at Bangor University, Jamie MacDonald came to talk to the groups about the importance physical activity, the impact of cardiovascular disease and how the level of physical activity can impact cognitive health of dementia patients. He explained if people can impact on some of the changeable issues within their bodies, such as physical health aspects, that they may be able to impact their cognitive impairment.

In order to demonstrate the kind of activity that people should be doing on the regularly (which is on average around 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week!) Dr. MacDonald went through this clever list, and then had us get up and get active!

Principles of Exercise (FITT)

  • Frequency – how often
  • Intensity – how hard
  • Time – how long
  • Type – running, walking, swimming, yoga, etc.

With all of the health benefits that come with being active, North Wales has a unique opportunity to offer activities to tourists that can improve on their physical as well as mental wellbeing. From climbing to kayaking, hiking and archery, there are so many opportunities to get active in North Wales, but the tricky part for our teams, Dr. Macdonald pointed out, is working within the constraints of Dementia patients abilities and comfort level.  Because places like gyms can be an intimidating for dementia patients, promoting environments that make them feel comfortable, that gets them out into nature, and change up their routines can be positive aspects to focus on.

What is….Design?

For the second half of week four, Dewi Rowlands, the course director for Product Design at the School of Education and Human Development gave the teams an insight into the minds and processes of designers. Like the brainstorming sessions that the teams have been having in the last couple of weeks, a large part of design is fuzzy in the beginning stages before they turn into solidified concepts, prototypes and then products. Dewi shared a couple of charts of the designer’s process, that will hopefully help the students take their preliminary ideas and turn them into tangible products or services.

What Designers consider…

  • Why are things the way they are
  • What sort of choices did the consumer have to make and what influence have affected their decisions
  • How things work
  • How things are made
  • What sort of criteria should we sue when we evaluate products in terms of good design.
  • In what particular ways is one product better than another and why

One eye opening tip that Dewi gave the students was how much they should consider emotion when it comes to design. He encouraged the teams to avoid ideas that would bring negative emotional responses to potential customers. Because factors specific to the things we use in our everyday lives influence how we feel when we are using them, it’s imperative that designers consider how the products their designing would make people feel.

Products that could bring negative responses!

He pointed out that how the product behaves according to customers’ expectation and limitations does have a significant impact on how likely they are to continue using a product.

Dewi’s top tips!

  • Make sure your product is something that provides a positive emotional experience
  • Our role is to evoke positive interaction points and enhance user experience through its functionality
  • The first principle of design on most people’s minds is usability

Scenario Building

At the end of the night, Dewi had the students do a scenario building exercise where they write and draw a story map for their initial idea. The storymapping had the students answering specific questions such as: why is there a need for your new product? Where will the new product be used? Which issues will your product solve and how will the new product be used? This exercise is very similar to the ones that designers in the field create while they are in the brainstorming phase. Dewi explained that the aim of a design spec is to try and anticipate everything that could cause a new product to be a failure and specify design targets for avoiding that failure!

Through these exercises, the expert team is hoping that the students have all the tools for one of the most challenging weeks in Enterprise by Design, the halfway point! Can you believe it? Neither can we! For next week’s assignment teams have to create a Pecha Kucha presentation. Check back in with us to see some of the student’s ideas!

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