Dubai Fitness Challenge 2020 creates citywide unity through strategic partner support

All-inclusive participation for the fourth edition of DFC underpinned by increasing collaboration with public and private sector partners


Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Dubai Fitness Challenge (DFC), the annual citywide celebration of fitness and wellness, has reconnected communities and fostered engagement across society, thanks to robust partnerships that have created diverse opportunities for everyone to stay motivated throughout the month. The fourth edition of the Challenge this year continues to welcome people of all ages, abilities and fitness levels to commit to 30 minutes of daily activity with an exciting programme of physical and virtual sessions.

DFC’s commitment to an all-inclusive participation underpins its ongoing efforts to increase collaboration with partners across the public and private sectors, leveraging all efforts to help make Dubai the most active city in the world. The 2020 programme comes to life through key partnerships, bringing three dedicated Fitness Villages, ten community-centric Fitness Hubs, more than 200 virtual sessions and over 2,000 classes across 150 locations throughout the month.

The entities helping DFC strengthen the spirit of the community this year include organisers Dubai Tourism and Dubai Sports Council; presenting partners DP World, Emirates NBD and Mai Dubai; association partners Dubai Chamber, Dubai Festival City Mall, Dubai Municipality, Emirates, Etisalat, Fitbit and Shamal – Kite Beach; official partners Arabian Radio Network (ARN), Aster Hospitals and Clinics, Barakat, Daman, IMG World of Adventures, Shield ME and Talabat; and government partners Event Security Committee, Dubai Health Authority, Dubai Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), Dubai Police, Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services, Ministry of Education and Roads & Transport Authority (RTA).

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and Chief Executive for Emirates Airline & Group, commented: “We are pleased to support the Dubai Fitness Challenge (DFC) for the fourth consecutive year. Health is high on the agenda in 2020, and we all have the opportunity to improve our physical and mental wellbeing through leading more active and healthy lifestyles. Good health is priceless and the best protection against a wide range of health and medical conditions. We are confident that Dubai Fitness Challenge has turned inspiration into participation, once again creating a positive impact when it comes to the health and wellbeing of our employees, their families and the wider community in Dubai.”

Dubai Sports Council (DSC), a government organiser of DFC for the fourth year in a row, has assisted with the organisation of DFC - in particular, supporting with the packed calendar of events and activities across the city. His Excellency Saeed Hareb, Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council, said: “Launched by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, Dubai Fitness Challenge has become one of the most anticipated events on our calendar, and a mascot of Dubai’s ever-growing dedication to physical and mental wellbeing. Every section of our community – young and old, men and women and people of determination have embraced this pioneering initiative, and its goals. Last year, we saw more than 1.1 million residents and visitors take in the month-long Challenge, including more than 70,000 in the historic Dubai Run 30x30 on Sheikh Zayed Road. More than 13,000 events and activities were part of the 2019 Dubai Fitness Challenge. The world has changed a lot since then because of COVID-19, but we are excited to have brought back another edition of this unique fitness challenge. Dubai Sports Council is proud to partner with the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), and together we hope to achieve the lofty goals of Dubai as a city of sport, happiness and physical activity.”

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) and Mai Dubai are making a pledge once again to inspire everyone to take on a healthier and more active lifestyle. His Excellency Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Managing Director and CEO of DEWA and Chairman of Mai Dubai, commented: “Dubai has always invested in the wellbeing of its people and continues to support various initiatives to promote healthier lifestyles in the community. Mai Dubai is synonymous with fitness and a more active, healthier lifestyle. We strive to achieve the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, to provide potable water according to the highest international standards and make Dubai the happiest and healthiest city for both residents and visitors. We are proud to be the Official Partner of Dubai Fitness Challenge in its fourth edition to promote health and spread enthusiasm and sports across Dubai for its residents and visitors. Mai Dubai supports an active lifestyle to wider audiences, staying true to its vision and mission. Apart from promoting a positive environment that enhances the health and happiness of the community in Dubai, sporting events like Dubai Fitness Challenge also emphasises the need to cultivate positive thinking. Furthermore, such endeavours foster a spirit of tolerance, coherence and inclusiveness among different segments of society.”

His Excellency Dawoud Al Hajri, Director General of Dubai Municipality said that the Dubai Fitness Challenge launched by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, has achieved remarkable results in the past years in spreading a sports culture among the citizens as well as residents of the country as it encourages everyone to practice a healthy life. He added: “The initiative that includes a set of challenges and regular sports competitions, provides a happy, healthy and productive work environment for employees, and helps in establishing healthy living concepts, and encourages them to follow this type of lifestyle and strengthen their fitness continuously throughout the year. The initiative aims to encourage both male and female participants to play sports and participate in competitive events that support healthy living quality, away from the usual routine and activate their bodies and minds. This will positively affect the outcome and results of their work performance as it will increase their productivity and make them feel happy and create a feeling of belongingness to the place where they work.”

His Excellency Dr. Abdulla Al Karam, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Director General of the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), commented: “More than any other time, this year has shown us how important it is to be fit and healthy – not just for our own benefit, but also for the benefit of those around us. This year has helped us realise that our wellbeing is precious. What gives meaning and depth to our lives is not the money we spend on possessions, but the time we spend with family and friends. The Dubai Fitness Challenge brings all these values together. For 30 minutes a day over 30 days, we get to be fitter and healthier; we get to improve our wellbeing; and we get to spend time with our loved ones – all at the same time. Of course, things are different this year. Technology has enabled us to show how creative and resilient we can be. Now it is time to show how fun and active we can be too. We hope to see everyone in Dubai – all students, all school & university staff, and all parents – get fitter and stay connected doing the Dubai Fitness Challenge. Whether we take part at school, at work, or at home - this is one challenge that we can all rise up to.”

His Excellency Khalifa Al Darai, Executive Director of Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services, said: “Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services is pleased to continue its support of the Dubai Fitness Challenge. Since its launch three years ago, Dubai Fitness Challenge has succeeded in changing the lifestyle of many of those in Dubai, by encouraging them to follow a healthy lifestyle by regularly exercising, and making sport an essential part of the culture of Emirati society. With the support of our wise leadership and the guidance of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, Dubai Fitness Challenge has contributed to motivating community members to improve their quality of life by taking care of their health and keeping fit and active throughout the year. This promotes a positive environment and enhances the health and happiness of the community in Dubai, as sports has a huge impact on self-discipline and positive thinking. It also fosters a spirit of tolerance, coherence and inclusiveness among different segments of society. As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility, Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services is committed to being an integral part of the success story of this world-class initiative by providing participants with all that is necessary for the diverse events and sports festivals over the course of one month. We are confident that the challenge will continue to motivate residents to ensure sports become part of their daily schedule, to contribute to making Dubai one of the most active cities in the world.”

Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), commented: “The continued success of Dubai Fitness Challenge is testament to our deep-rooted stakeholder network and global partnerships, enabling a unified ecosystem that accelerates our vision of making Dubai the most active city in the world. Our ongoing efforts to increase collaboration with partners across the public and private sector are crucial in facilitating this ongoing success and drives our promise to make fitness easy and accessible to all. We remain committed to harnessing the collective strength of all our partners to empower people from all backgrounds and communities to get active, build fitness into their daily lives, and reach their potential through a happier, healthier lifestyle.”

Aisha Al Siri, Director of Health and Physical Fitness Department at the Ministry of Education (MoE) commented: “The Dubai Fitness Challenge (DFC) is an ideal opportunity to perpetuate athletic thinking and its applications on the ground within an inclusive community scope that urges everyone to practise and adopt sports on a sustainable and continuous basis.” The students of the Emirati School will participate in DFC with passion, she added, noting that the MoE seeks to firmly establish sports among students as a continuous culture that will keep pace with them in all stages of their lives with a view to enriching their journey from the educational, cognitive and health perspectives. She said, “The MoE has developed a comprehensive strategy that targets its students from all aspects, particularly sports, which not only has close connection with all other aspects but reflects positively on students’ attainment as well.” Al Siri explained that the MoE would organize special activities for students in all schools and all seminars but students’ participation in the DFC will be only inside schools in line with public safety standards under the current circumstances. Students and their parents can participate in all the stages where the DFC is held in Dubai, she concluded.

Colonel Ali Khalfan Al Mansouri, Acting Director of the General Department of Community Happiness at Dubai Police, stressed that for the fourth consecutive year, the Dubai Fitness Challenge - which was launched by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai - reflects the devoted attention the UAE's leadership pays to the health of society where all community members follow a healthy lifestyle that is full of happiness and positivity. He added: “This year, the Challenge faces a great difficulty as the world is facing the COVID-19 outbreak. However, with the positive spirit that embodies our notion in life, we believe that life must go on and that together we are set to overcome all challenges and difficulties. One should also bear in mind that taking up sports is inclined to unite our communities and foster the spirit of tolerance among us. Every year, Dubai celebrates fitness and wellness with numerous initiatives embodying the great vision of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the number one supporter of sports enthusiasts. We, at Dubai Police, are always ready to participate in this month-long celebration with high spirit and full of energy. We encourage everyone to take part in this challenge while adhering to the precautionary measures announced by the concerned authorities in Dubai.”

Maha Al Qattan, Chief People Officer at DP World, commented: “We are delighted to partner with Dubai Fitness Challenge for 2020 to ensure this year’s edition is the most open and inclusive to date. With the support of our leadership and the guidance of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, Dubai Fitness Challenge has already done a tremendous job in championing a healthier lifestyle and making sport an essential part of our communities. Improving the health and wellness of the people of Dubai and the UAE is vital to everyone at DP World, and we are therefore incredibly proud to support an initiative that will enable Dubai to become the healthiest, happiest and most vibrant city in the world. We look forward to seeing people of all ages, backgrounds, abilities and genders making the most of the fantastic facilities on offer at the Kite Beach Fitness Village, or enjoying one of the many activities planned for this year’s 30x30 challenge.”

Moadh Bukhash, Chief Marketing Officer, Group Marketing & Customer Experience at Emirates NBD said: “We are delighted to lend support once again to the annual Dubai Fitness Challenge, an established event in the UAE’s cultural calendar. Emirates NBD has always been an active supporter of community initiatives and we are proud to join hands with DFC as we work together to foster healthy habits, well-being and fitness within the UAE community.”

Eman Al Madani, Senior Executive of Corporate Social Responsibility at Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said: “Dubai Chamber's support for the Dubai Fitness Challenge advances its commitment to ensuring the health and well-being of its employees.” She noted that the city-wide initiative strengthens Dubai's reputation as a global city that prioritises the health and fitness of its citizens and residents. Al Madani described health and wellness as key to enhancing employee productivity and happiness, adding that Dubai Chamber’s participation in the Dubai Fitness Challenge complements several other initiatives that encourage its employees and the wider business community to adopt an active lifestyle.

As one of DFC’s flagship Fitness Villages, the Mai Dubai Fitness Village Festival City Mall is the newest adventure spot for the whole family, welcoming DFC participants for thrilling activities at The Arch. Steven Cleaver, Director, Shopping Centres Dubai, Al-Futtaim Malls, commented: “Our commitment at Dubai Festival City Mall is to deliver daily exceptional experiences for our customers. This year’s Dubai Fitness Challenge is no exception, and we are serving up a treat for thrill-seekers with the Arch, a giant state-of-the-art multi-purpose iconic venue featuring various activities to get hearts pumping. This new concept provides a high-octane, adrenaline-filled adventure not to be missed. We will also be hosting four fitness activity zones in the fitness village – football, basketball, pump track and a workout stage to encourage our visitors to get active.”

Abdulla Salem Al Mana, General Manager, Etisalat – Dubai, commented: “We at Etisalat are proud to support an initiative that encourages individuals from all walks of life to embrace a healthier and more active lifestyle. We laud His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, for his continuous support to sports in Dubai and for bringing this innovative challenge back in its fourth edition after the great success it achieved last year. As the official telecom partner, Etisalat encourages participants to take advantage of the various fitness events and activities during the 30-day Dubai Fitness Challenge and do their part to make Dubai the most active city in the world.”

Commenting on Fitbit’s support of the Dubai Fitness Challenge, Des Power, SVP and Managing Director of Fitbit International, said: “Our mission to make everyone in the world healthier has never been more important than it is today. Our lives have changed dramatically in recent months and supporting each other to stay healthy and active during this time has become more important than ever. By bringing people and communities together to motivate each other through fun events and challenges, the Dubai Fitness Challenge is a great initiative in which everyone can participate.”

Kite Beach Management commented on this year’s Challenge saying: “We’re proud to once again partner with Dubai Fitness Challenge this year and continue to play a core part of the city-wide fitness movement for the fourth year in a row. Being one of the three main fitness villages in Dubai is testament to our commitment to fitness and overall health all year-round, and this year we have strived to provide a safe and socially distanced environment for all visitors as they take up the 30x30 challenge and dive into a plethora of activities - designed to get people active and enjoy fitness fun across the beachfront destination.”

Alexander van‘t Riet, CEO of Mai Dubai added: “Staying fit allows people to achieve more in life. By taking care of our own bodies we improve the quality of our lives manifold. Hydration is an integral part of any fitness regime and essential for overall endurance levels, which is particularly crucial for athletes and fitness enthusiasts. At Mai Dubai, we like to associate ourselves with initiatives that share our values and align with our mission to provide high quality bottled water and encourage an active lifestyle among the members of the community. Needless to say, Dubai Fitness Challenge has succeeded in changing the habits of many in Dubai by motivating them to adopt an active, healthy lifestyle and therefore, we believe that this partnership is meaningful in a myriad of ways.”

Dr. Sherbaz Bichu, CEO – Aster Hospitals & Clinics, UAE, commented: “The Dubai Fitness Challenge is an excellent initiative by the Government of Dubai, to motivate the city to stay fit, both physically as well as mentally and it is our pleasure to be contributing towards this cause. Aster Hospitals and Clinics have been at the forefront of providing support to the residents and citizens of UAE during the COVID-19 pandemic and this Dubai Fitness Challenge month will slowly enable the city to get working on their physical and mental health as they return to the ‘new normal’. We continue to work under the patronage of His Highness by making this event a success.”

Kenneth D’Costa, Managing Director, Barakat Group of Companies, Barakat, commented: “Our health-conscious millennial consumer appreciates the diligence and integrity behind the offerings from the brand, be it juice or shots, cut fruits and veggies and a variety of ready to eat salads. Barakat takes the tenet of “you are what you eat” with a great sense of responsibility. This participation reiterates the commitment of Barakat as a local Emirati business to promote health & wellness in line with the objective of the Dubai Fitness Challenge.”

Hamad Al Mehyas, CEO of the National Health Insurance Company – Daman, commented: “At the National Health Insurance Company – Daman, we look to shape a healthier community through promoting active engagement, health initiatives, and awareness campaigns. As such, I am proud that we are supporting the Dubai Fitness Challenge for the third year in a row, working with a range of partners to encourage healthier living in Dubai and across the UAE.”

Khalid Al Khatib, CEO – SHIELDme, UAE, commented: “Shieldme is proud to be the official sanitising partner for Dubai Fitness Challenge 2020, a vision of our city’s esteemed leadership to ensure that everyone stays healthy, fit and strong. We are happy and excited to be a part of this journey initiated by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai that aims to support the fitness, health & wellness of Dubai residents. Shieldme is pure HOCL, a naturally made molecule inside human bodies and a high-level disinfectant that kills 99.99% of viruses & bacteria in less than 30 seconds. It contains no alcohol or chemicals, and that is why it is safe on the skin as it causes no irritation. It is completely safe on humans, including new-borns. 100% natural and safe on our environment as well. Shieldme is being produced in UAE, UK, Australia and soon in the USA. Our products have always been enduring to help everyone to be safe and hence have ensured high-quality checks and international certifications from the best laboratories worldwide – USA, UK, Australia & Singapore. Our partnership with Dubai Fitness Challenge with Shieldme’s products is a message that life will return to better than it used to be.”

As part of its mission to inspire wellbeing across the emirate and to help raise awareness on the importance of a balanced lifestyle, talabat, the region’s leading food and grocery delivery platform, is encouraging residents to make more healthy choices during the Dubai Fitness Challenge by offering free delivery and 30% off the DFC Healthy Cuisine Collection, which features a wide selection of healthy restaurants. In addition to the discount on the specially created cuisine collection, talabat is hosting fun activities and games with the chance to win prizes at the “talabat Game of Throws” half court located at Kite Beach. Commenting on talabat’s participation in DFC, Jeremy Doutte, VP UAE at talabat, said: “We are very proud to partner with Dubai Fitness Challenge and support the vision of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai by further cementing Dubai’s position as an exemplary city worldwide for its emphasis on health and wellbeing. At talabat, our aim is to make it easy and convenient for people to make healthy choices. By catering to everyone’s taste - including a range of healthy cuisine options for those seeking a more balanced diet - we strive to be our customers' trusted sidekick for healthy foods. This  applies to meals offered by our restaurant partners on our platform, as well as the healthy groceries available at talabat Mart, our quick commerce 24x7 grocery concept, where customers can get their essentials delivered in just 30 minutes at any time of the day. Moreover, we have launched talabat Fitness Challenge to motivate our employees to be more active for the entire month of November and enhance their wellbeing in and out of the office.”

Eiji Amano, Managing Director at Yakult Middle East, commented: “We’re very excited to partner with the Dubai Fitness Challenge to promote health and increase awareness about the importance of maintaining the overall health of our bodies. This initiative is promoting a long-term healthy lifestyle among all ages of the community members through different levels of physical activities. This initiative is motivating Dubai residents to take the challenge and be part of the change toward a healthier society. Dubai Fitness Challenge is aligned with Yakult’s philosophy of promoting health and happiness to all people around the world. Yakult is a healthy probiotic drink that contains active live bacteria that helps in improving digestion and boosting immunity. Yakult Middle East is committed to encouraging a healthy lifestyle by sampling Yakult to participants during the 30 days of the challenge to boost their immunity. We believe that participants will enjoy the great taste and benefits of Yakult, and they will make part of their daily health routine.”

Register now and commit to 30 minutes of activity for 30 days during DFC 2020. Access full details on 


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About Dubai Fitness Challenge

The Dubai Fitness Challenge (DFC) is an initiative of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai. DFC has been created to motivate the people of Dubai to adopt an active and healthier lifestyle and commit to 30 minutes of daily activity for 30 days. Running from October 30 to November 28, 2020, DFC encompasses all forms of activity, in an action-packed calendar of virtual and physical sessions, to make fitness accessible and easy for all. This year’s programme will have the highest standards of safety precautions and social distancing measures in place to ensure Dubai’s residents and visitors can stay connected and safe.

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