Events season has slowly crept up on us here at Function Jigsaw and we have just come back from our first event of the season.
The ‘Isle of Wight Challenge’ is organised through Action Challenge – a company that organises charity endurance events.
Over 1400 people took part in the event which was raising money for over 300 different charities and took the form of a 106km run, jog or walk around the coastal line of the island. What a beautiful weekend for it too.
Leading up to the event, Function Jigsaw’s job is to ensure there is enough staff to cover the three stations at 50km, 75km and 100km. They are the three main rest stops along the walk. There isn’t just one therapist at each station, there is sometimes up to six massage therapists to cover the work load.
The therapists come from all over England to become a part of our events team and that creates a really good sense of team spirit. We were also very lucky to have four people working this event who were from the Island itself. It was great to meet them and form a partnership for the future.
When organising the event, there are many areas you need to look into. One major aspect is to ensure there is a set plan of the timings at each stop to ensure there are enough therapists to cover peak times at each station.
It’s something that is quite difficult to plan as the one thing you cannot guarantee is the weather and that will have an effect on how many people reach certain stages by certain times.
There is then the task of finding a balance of students and graduates and supervisors to work the event. This is a chance to get students together to share experiences and to also complete log book hours which is invaluable when learning the skill of massage to work towards their qualifications.
It also helps boost their confidence knowing there are graduates and supervisors who are on hand to ask any questions or raise any queries if they are not 100 per cent with something. This again is something that can be a tricky process to get right but also part of the challenge.
And there were plenty of aching muscles too.
As the event draws closer to starting, the adrenaline really kicks in. We had the van packed, ferries booked and ready for the weekend.
The first thing to do upon arrival was to visit each site and carry out a risk assessment to make sure that members of our staff are safe and sound before their shift begins.
The sites were beautiful and in such lovely locations. The Action Challenge staff couldn’t have been more encouraging and supportive for us and there was a really positive vibe before the event got underway.
It was then to the cottage we hired for the weekend to brief all staff and to ensure everyone knew their shifts and timings and what was expected of them.
Saturday soon came around and it was busy from the word go. We were up and out to deliver beds and set up each location, then it was then back to the house to pick up the first set of team members to take them to their shift.
The second shift started working while others slept as their shifts began later in the evening. Ben, our designated driver, started ferrying people around, picking people up and cooking dinner and breakfast for everyone. He was a great help and we couldn’t have done it without him.
It soon came round to the middle of night and all three stations were in full flow. It was then time for me to get a few hours sleep before the next day began.
It was a really successful weekend for Function Jigsaw and all of the team got a lot out of it. Now, if we could just book that weather for every we do this summer!
Then try – How to recover from a marathon by Lauren Dobson
Or – How to prepare for a marathon by Tom Heeley