Pick Your Peak Stair Challenge

Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2019 Stair Challenge (June 12 – July 19). A record 600+ faculty and staff from across UBC (60 teams and 40 individuals) collectively climbed and stepped 302,919 metres! We encourage you to continue embodying the spirit of what the Stair Challenge is all about: inspiring and supporting your personal, physical and social health and wellbeing year-round. See you next year!

What is the Pick Your Peak Stair Challenge?

The Pick Your Peak Stair Challenge is an annual fun and inclusive way to encourage staff and faculty to take the stairs. Stair climbing is a great way to boost cardiovascular health, build muscle and strengthen the core. And the best part about it? It’s free and you’ll have a chance to win great prizes!

All abilities are welcome to participate. See below for accessible participation options.

How to get started:

  1. Each team member must register here by 4:00 p.m. on June 12.
  2. Receive your Pick Your Peak registration package (via email the week of June 10)
  3. Select the peak you are striving to climb
  4. Log your daily flights of stairs on the personal Daily Step Tracker
  5. Log your weekly totals on the master Team Tracking Sheet (submitted at the end only)
  6. Climb, climb, climb!
  7. Submit totals after four weeks by 4:00 p.m. on July 19  (submission form will be available soon)
  8. Have fun and a chance to win great individual and team prizes!

*Please consult with a physician before participating if you have any existing medical conditions.


We suggest you ‘pick your peak’ based on the average number of flights you think you can climb each day or based on your personal fitness goals.

Peak Height (in metres) Average # of flights/per day to reach this peak
Diamond Head 232 m 3
Burnaby Mountain 370 m 5
Stawamus Chief 700 m 9
Table Mountain 1085 m 14
Grouse Mountain 1231 m 16
Cypress Bowl 1432 m 18
Mount Olympus 1950 m 25
Mount St. Helens 2550 m 33
Mount Fuji 3776 m 48
Mount Kilimanjaro 5895 m 76
Mount Everest 8848 m 113

1 point = 1 flight of stairs climbed
1 flight of stairs = 3 metres of elevation OR approx. 16 steps up


Climbing stairs:

  • 5 flights of stairs (with 16 steps each) to reach your office = 5 points
  • Wreck Beach stairs have approx. 400 steps = 25 points (400/16) (approximate depending on the trail)
  • 144 stairs on an outdoor trail or park with stairs = 9 points (144 steps/16 steps)

Step class:

  • One 60 minute step aerobics class = 20 points


  • Count the number of steps you do in 1 minute and multiply it by the number of minutes you workout

Hiking/walking with incline:

  • 853 meters (Grouse Grind elevation) = 284 points (853 metres/3 metres)

Accessibility Options

Walking: If you are unable to climb stairs, you can count your walking steps instead.
60 steps = 1 flight = 1 point
*stair climbing burns on average 50% more calories than walking without incline so the step count to get a point is higher.

Wheelchair: Track your travel distance using an odometer (can be purchased at bike shops).
100 m = 125 steps = 5.2 points
500 m = 624 steps = 26 points
1K (1000 m) = 1250 steps = 52 points
*take the converted step total and divide by 60

Reference:  https://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424127887324096404578354590581579014


  • Participation prizes will be awarded each week through random draws.
  • A prize will be drawn at the Meet Up events.
  • One individual prize will be awarded for the highest climber in the individual category after four weeks.
  • Team prizes will be awarded based on highest average points per participant after four weeks for the top performing team.

Promotional Resources

Please help us share these Stair Challenge resources:

Did you know?

  • Stair climbing requires 8-9 times more energy expenditure than sitting.
  • It counts as ‘vigorous’ physical activity and burns more calories per minute than jogging.
  • You burn roughly 1.5 calories for every 10 steps.
  • For buildings with five floors or less, it’s nearly always quicker to take the stairs.
  • Studies show office workers save up to 15 minutes a day by taking the stairs.
  • Stair climbing cuts carbon emissions. You could save between 0.3 & 0.6Kg of CO2/day.
  • It can lead to improved cardiovascular health and stronger joints and muscles.

Start training now with this Stair Climbing Workout, beginner and advanced.



Banner Photo: Paul Joseph, UBC Communications & Marketing

Check out our 2019 Stair Challenge Selfies!

Check out our 2018 Stair Challenge Selfies!

Click the thumbnail to see the full picture

Check out our 2017 Stair Challenge Selfies!

Click the thumbnail to see the full picture

Check out our Stair Challenge Selfies from 2016!

Click the thumbnail to see the full picture

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