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Wellbeing 2019

Yoga at your desk video

No yoga mat or stretchy pants required for this 14 min Office Break Yoga with "Yoga with Adriene" (see Well Now! September 2019).

Carve out time for yourself to stretch it out, create space, connect with your breath, focus your mind and replenish your body. No excuses! This quick practice is sure to help you move through your workday with ease and grace. Perfect when you need a reset and/or great for some team bonding. Great for at-home yogis who are tight on time!

Cake or Death?

Braking the taboo of death with a brew and a blether, by The Revd Samantha Ferguson (Assistant Chaplain)

In May, the Chaplaincy Service hosted its first Death Café.  Held in The Doll’s House Restaurant, within view of Holy Trinity Church on a sunny spring day, a group of people gathered to eat cake, drink tea and discuss death.

The objective of the Death Cafés is to increase awareness of death with a view to helping people make the most of their (finite) lives. In simple terms, a Death Café is a group directed discussion of death with no agenda, objectives or themes, either religious or secular.  It is a discussion group rather than a grief support or counselling session.  To read the full article please go to the Well Now! October 2019 newsletter.

St Andrews Street Market

Fife's finest freshest produce - 09.00 - 14.00, Market Street.

Artisan producers, cookery demonstrations, led walks, live music, family entertainment - All at our car-free street markets.  For more information visit the Fife Farmer's Market page.

Drinkaware - Unit tracking app

The Drinkaware Trust has developed a unit-comsumption tracking app. The FREE app can help you understand the impact of your drinking, and provide support  to help you to change your habits for the better.

Calculate units ‌and calories, review your drinking patterns over time, set your own goals and get support at the times and places where you need it the most.

If you’re trying to make a change for the better, it’s important to acknowledge when you’re doing a good job.‌ The Drinkaware app provides impartial, non-judgmental support and encouragement to help you keep track of your journey with a range of useful features.

Runway Run-Around

At Leuchars Station (Army Base) for Maggie's Centres.
Date: Sunday 20th October 2019
Time: 11.00

Run or Walk a 5 mile route around the runway at the iconic Leuchars Station (Army Base), each participant will receive an engraved medal and a Fisher & Donaldson Fudge doughnut! 

For more details please visit the Well Now! October 2019 newsletter.

Kombucha Tasting by Luvians

Date: Wednesday 23 October 2019
Time: 18.00 - 20.00
Venue: Luvians Ice Cream Parlour (84 Market Street)
The 2-hour tasting will feature a selection of Kombuchas, as well as deli platters from Luvians of Cupar.  Book your place.

Kombucha is a midly fizzy, slightly sour, fermented drink made from sweetened tea and is a good source of antioxidents and probiotics.

As part of our alcohol awareness month, Sober October, it is our pleasure to treat you to a curated tour of locally produced Kombucha from the East Neuk and others from further afield. Andrew explains the process of how Kombucha is produced, its flavourings, blendings and food pairings.

Order forms will be provided to allow you to purchase any of the featured Kombuchas at a discounted rate specially for University Staff.

Understand how much you are drinking

Take the quiz to find out how much you are drinlking and get advice on making changes to improve your health and wellbeing.

Men's Focus Group (Estates)

Date: Friday 1 November 2019
Time: 10.00 - 11.00
Venue: Conference room (Byre Theatre)
Refreshments provided.

If you are a man working in Estates and are interested in giving feedback on what wellbeing initiatives and resources you want at work, email: to confirm your attendance.

Eating Well

Informal and interactive sessions about healthy eating and healthy eating for families.  An overview of key healthy eating messages,  encouraging participants to think about the content of everyday foods and how to make food for families in an easy healthy way.

‌Eating Well - Book your place.
Date: Tuesday 3 December 2019
Time: 10.00 - 12.00

Eating Well for families - Book your place
Date: Tuesday 3 December 2019
Time: 13.30 - 15.30

Straight Shots


Date: Thursday 10 October 2019
Time: 12.15 - 13.15
Venue: Hebdomadar's Room
Lunch will be provided at this event so please book your place.


A frank conversation about alcohol dependency and supporting people in recovery.  According to the Scottish Health Survey 2017, 1-in-4 people in Scotland drink at hazardous or harmful levels (>14 units per week).


As part of our alcohol awareness month, Sober October, we are delighted to host Paul Black, recent St Andrews PhD Graduate and trainee Addiction Counsellor.


Paul will be giving a lunchtime talk about his own lived experience of understanding and changing his relationship with alcohol and how to support someone who is trying to manage their relationship with alcohol.


This talk is available for all who are interested in learning more about alcohol dependence and how to support those who are working on their recovery.


Wee Walk Once a Week (WWOW)

Wee Walk Once a Week (WWOW) is a 30-minute walk at lunchtime open to all staff, students, and townspeople.  Walks take place in the East, West and Central zones of St Andrews every week and are suitable for all fitness levels.  They start at 13.15 every Tuesday and Thursday.

Joining a WWOW is a great way to meet colleagues, take a break from your work, and enjoy the fresh air and scenery in our beautiful town – as well as improving your walking fitness.

Yoga on the Lawn

Designed to relax and revive you from prolonged periods of sitting, this 30-minute standing yoga session includes guided breathing, gentle stretching and movements to improve circulation and pep you up for the rest of the day.

No need to book, just turn up on the day!  The dates and locations are:

St Mary's Quad

Tuesday 17, 24 September
Tuesday 1, 8 October
(11.00 - 11.30)

Gateway Lawn

Thursday 19, 26 September
Thursday 3, 10 October
(11.00 - 11.30)

Bike to Work Breakfast

Get a FREE breakfast every month if you cycle to work - sit in or take away!  Available every third Thursday of the month from 8am to 9am at the Rector's Cafe.

There will also be Bike to Work Breakfast events at The Medical & Biological Sciences Building Cafe, 07.30 to 09.30 on 19th September and 21st November 2019

You are keeping the air clean and yourself happy and healthy so you deserve FREE food and coffee!

Dundee Cyclathon 2019

Camperdown Park | Sunday 15th September 2019 | Starting at 10.30am

Starting and finishing at Camperdown Park, the full Cyclathon will take place along Dundee’s dedicated 26 mile Green Circular Cycle Route.

For the first time, there will also be a Mini-Cyclathon around and within the perimeter of Camperdown Park of 3 laps, a distance of approximately 10 kilometres, for those who would prefer a shorter distance, or for younger children in the family.

To enter, please go to the Entry Form.
To find out more information about the Cyclathon, please visit

Academic Bicycle Challenge

The Academic Bicycle Challenge combines healthy exercise and social interaction with sustainable mobility and practical climate protection.  The University will be participating in the Academic Bicycle Challenge for the whole month of September.

To participate, simply:

  1. Go to their website,

  2. Download and register on the free app, "Naviki"

  3. In the app, go to "Settings" → "Contests" → "ABC!"

  4. Cycle, record your trips, and enjoy ABC Leaderboards

Everybody's fun, team spirit, and exercise are in the ABC spotlight. Sportive performance is possible, though not required! Jump at the chance and benefit from the many ABC advantages for your institution!

For more information, contact Callum and Ailsa at

It's Faster by E-Bike!

It's official! The fastest method of traveling around St Andrews is by E-Bike. That’s what the users of the University’s Go E-Bike have said in a recent user survey after the scheme's first year of use.

Launched in July 2018, Go E-Bike has 19 Gazelle Orange G7 Electric Bikes, located at 5 sites across the University Campus. University staff can use the E-Bikes FOR FREE for up to 24 hours (week-days) or 72 hours (weekends). Users can book and access the bikes via a smartphone App.

The project initially aimed to provide staff moving to Eden Campus the opportunity to travel between sites quickly and efficiently, but has grown to promote cycling for commuting within the town as an alternative to car use.

For more information and E-Bike Induction dates, please visit the August 2019 Well Now! newsletter.

Sleep Competition winner

We announce the winner of a brand new matress worth £250.  From the nearly 70 entries we received to the competition, we could only have one winner of the brand new mattress. 

Congratulations to Karen Brennan for winning.  Karen has worked in the University as a cleaner with the Estates Team for over 5 years. When asked how she felt about winning the competition, Karen commented:  "I can't believe my luck! Having a new mattress will make sleeping even more enjoyable. Thank you!" 

Step Count 2019 | Post Challenge Celebration

The Step Count Challenge Post Challenge Celebration took place on Tuesday 9th July at The Gateway to mark the end of the 2019 challenge and celebrate the fantastic efforts ‌of the teams that took part this year. 335 University staff took part, making up 11% of all people who took part in the challenge nationally. 

'Chariots of Misfire Take 2' won the prize for highest step count of all the University teams and came second nationally!  Additional awards were given out during the celebrations, for the full list of awards and winners please see the August 2019 Well Now! newsletter.

Sleep Hygiene

If you find falling asleep or staying asleep difficult, consider whether your habits during the day are affecting you at night.  ‌Try following a routine that maximises your body's ability to prepare you for a long, deep, refreshing sleep ....

  • Get up at the same time each day!

  • Go outside.

  • Stop drinking caffinated drinks 6-8 hours before bedtime.

  • Finish eating 3 hours before bed.

  • Don't exercise right before bedtime.

  • Get off your phone, tablet or laptop at least an hour before bed.

  • Limit your liquid intake from 1 hour before bed.

  • Make your bedroom as dark and quiet as possible.

  • Make sure your bedroom is cool enough.

For more details on each point and further information please visit the Sleep Hygiene article in the July 2019 Well Now.

Step Count Challenge 2019

The headlines at the end of this year's challenge.

  • 68 TEAMS signed up for this year
  • 237 MILLION STEPS have been counted
  • 113,000 MILES have been walked

Our University teams have walked the eqivalent so far of...

  • From St Andrews to the Madrid and back 50 TIMES
  • Around the Equator 4.5 TIMES
  • Half the distance from the Earth to the Moon

Our teams have walked in various parts of Scotland...

  • The Fife Pilgram Walk
  • The Great Glen Way
  • The West Highland Way
  • Mayar & Dreish, Angus Glen
  • Mull of Kintyre, and many more...

For our teams taking part this year, there is still time for you to book yourselves a place for the Step Count Challenge Post-Challenge Celebration | Tues 9th July | The Gateway.  Open to all team members participating in this year's challenge.

A big thank you | Marie Curie 10K

A big thank you to everyone who joined us on the Marie Curie 10K Walk on 8th June.  Over 75 people took part.  A massive £1,541.37 was raised from donations, sponsorships and pledges.  The money collected will go to supporting the work of Marie Curie nurses and support services.

Please visit the Marie Curie website if you would like to donate or find out more.

10K for Marie Curie | 8th June 2019

Join us for this annual walk in aid of Marie Curie. Staff, friends, family, and even dogs are all welcome!  png - daffy and writingThe route takes in some of St Andrews' most iconic sites and will take around 3.5 hours at a comfortable pace.

For those doing the Step Count Challenge this is a great way to combine stepping and spending time with family and friends!

To register your interest please read the 10k Walker Agreement (PDF, 225 KB) and complete our online Registration form.

CPR & Defibrilation training | 12 June 2019

The survival rate for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in the UK is currently less than 10%.  ‌This is, in part, due to bystanders lacking knowledge of CPR, defibrillation and the confidence to intervene. Even minor intervention can greatly increase the survival rate of cardiac arrest victims.

Introduction to Dementia workshop | 3 June | 13.30 - 17.00

The basics of dementia and its impact will be covered as well as some strategies for making the most of retained skills for individuals with a diagnosis and those who care for them.  ‌

The course will be delivered by Dr Maggie Ellis who leads the Dementia Friendly St Andrews campaign:

Book your place on this event.

Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW) | 13-19 May 2019

The theme for this year is Body Image which is a very relevant and important topic for many of us.  There has been a lot of focus in the media about the exclusionary body and beauty standards that exist within our society. Many movements and campaigns have come to the forefront to advocate and celebrate the diversity of shapes, sizes, and colours that bodies come in, and refocus our self-worth towards our other non-physical attributes, achievements and talents.

For more information and details on how you can get involved please visit the dedicated University MHAW page and the MHAW website.

Healthy Working Lives Survey 2019

Every 3 years the University runs the Healthy Working Lives Survey to find out how we're doing in promoting wellbeing, health, and safety for our employees in their working lives.

Participants have the ‌option to add their name (via a separate form) to be entered into a prize draw for one of five £30 vouchers for local retailers. This will not affect the confidentiality of your responses.

The survey is completely anonymous.  Please contribute to the University wellbeing and engagement programme by taking time out to complete this survey:

Fife Leisure Corporate Membership

*Now available to University Staff*

The Wellbeing & Engagement Group is delighted to confirm that the University has now joined the Fife Leisure Corporate Membership scheme!

This will enable University staff to receive a 20% discount on the usual fees. Staff can take advantage of this offer by showing their Staff ID badge when joining up at any of Fife Leisure's facilities. Existing members can transfer to the preferential rates at their request, provided they have completed their minimum term of membership and provide 30 days' notice.

If you have any queries please email

Step Count Challenge 2019 is coming!

The national 8-week challenge where teams of five make like a Pretender and walk 500 miles (or more!) is back! Starting on 29th April, teams from organisations across Scotland will join in with Photo taken from Autumn Step CountPaths For All's annual competition designed to get us all out of seats and walking just that bit more every day.

The Wellbeing & Engagement Group will once again be sponsoring University teams so registration fees will be paid on your behalf. Just get your team together and fill in the online sponsorship request form‌.

For more information see the dedicated Step Count Challenge 2019 web page.

50+ Pilates | 16th April 2019

Aimed at members of staff in te 50+ age bracket, this relaxing class will focus on the deeper muscles of the abdominals and back to improve your posture, strengthen your core, and improve your flexibility.

All participants are welcome, regardless of whether you have tried Pilates before or not. Please wear comfortable clothing that you can move in, and should you have your own exercise mat please feel free to bring that.

Book Now: April 16th 12.30-13.30

CPR & Defib training - 27th March 2019

Book Now: March 27th 12.30-13.30

This brief class with Henry Rae and Mike Fearons, University First Aiders, will teach the Instinctive CPR method.‌  There is very little to remember, but learning the method will give you the confidence to believe you could cope with a  real emergency.

No experience is required - just come along and get hands-on!  This class is also suitable as a refresher for those who have previously had training but have not done CPR for a while.

How healthy is your heart?

Find out with the NHS Check Your Heart Age Tool - the heart age test:

  • Tells you your heart age compared to your real age
  • Explains why it's important to know your blood pressure and cholestrol numbers
  • Gives advice on how to reduce your heart age

Fife Leisure Corporate Membership Update

Thank you to all members of staff who expressed interest in joining Fife Leisure's Corporate Membership scheme, which provides a 20% discount on the usual fees.

The Wellbeing & Engagement Group is delighted to confirm that the University has now applied to join the corporate membership scheme. The joining process is underway, and we will provide details of how to take advantage of this offer to all staff who expressed interest as soon as our membership is confirmed.

If you did not express interest, but would like to receive these details please email

Love Your Smile with Gentle Dental Care

Gentle Dental Care (in St Andrews) is offering a FREE New Patient Assesment (worth £85) to any University member of staff signing up for a 12-month membership plan.  This offer is only available until 1st June.

The New Patient Assessment is a 30-minute appointment which includes screening for gum disease, mouth cancer and x-rays.

Contact details for the dental practice - email: or tel: 01334 475 433

Fresh Produce Giveaway!

Email by Close of Business on Friday 15th February 2019 and win 1KG of fresh fruit & vegetables - FREE!  Winners are selected at random and will be notified by 20th Feb, with distribution on 28th Feb.


Wellbeing & Engagement Group

Every month the group organises activities, events and promotions around different health and wellbeing themes.

Sign up to the Well Now! newsletter email:

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