Build a Piano Staircase: Creative behaviour change

“…something as simple as fun is the easiest way to change people’s behaviour for the better. Be it for yourself, for the environment, or for something entirely different, the only thing that matters is that it’s change for the better.” –

Ever have your folks tell you they used to walk 40 miles to school, uphill both ways on streets that were paved with broken glass and vinegar? They probably exaggerated.

That said, I think it’s safe to say that things have gotten pretty damn sedentary here in the West over the past few decades. I mean, I’ve been known suffer through an episode of Say Yes to the Dress if it means not having to get up and walk the four feet to where I left the remote (although I’d much rather watch this show).

And then there’s the people who will circle a parking lot for days in order to get a space as close to the mall as humanly possible. The willingness to spend an extra 10 minutes of driving in circles to avoid an extra 12 seconds of walking is mathematics at its most baffling.

That’s why I love this week’s Buddha Belly Badge winner. Check out the video below where the people at The Fun Theory turn the steps of a stairway into giant, working piano keys. It’s an extremely creative way of getting more people to take the stairs instead of the escalator.


OK, yes, The Fun Theory is an initiative of Volkswagen. And yes, Volkswagen is a car company and as such probably not the best representative of the “pro-walking” movement. But, still: it’s a pretty awesome idea.

The Buddha Belly Badge recognizes creative and inspiring ways to help others. Share your own awesome experiences by visiting the Submissions Section (you’ll get a free ebook as a thank you for your submission). Or add your stories, photos and videos to the Badge of Awesome Facebook Page.

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Josh Martin
Josh Martin is the creative force behind Badge of Awesome. He is the author of "Misadventure Musings: Lessons learned from life's awesome and absurd moments" and "The Overcoming Obstacles Handbook."

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