It’s the biggest rivalry of all time.

And now, faculty and staff are taking it to a new level with the first-ever physical activity challenge between the University of Michigan and The Ohio State University.

The Rivals Challenge is open to all university faculty and staff.

Register today at

Track your exercise minutes May 2 through June 26.

Starting May 2, faculty and staff from both universities will go head-to-head in The Rivals Challenge, an eight-week competition that will compare the active minutes for all eligible participants. U-M faculty and staff participate by signing up and keeping track of all their active minutes, whether it is walking with friends or working out at the gym.

“We’re excited to partner with Ohio State to extend this time-honored rivalry to a new program that will engage our faculty and staff in a fun competition to encourage physical activity and workplace well-being,” says LaVaughn Palma-Davis, senior director of health and well-being services.

The Rivals Challenge runs from May 2 through June 26. The winner will be based on the highest average daily minutes per participant and will be announced at a special event July 8 at the Michigan Union.

For U-M faculty and staff, the experience will be very similar to Active U. Participants set a weekly exercise goal, join a team or participate as an individual, then log their minutes on an online tracker. Participants have multiple ways to log their exercise minutes, including using a computer, smartphone or tablet, by text message or by syncing a Fitbit.

Participants will be eligible to win prizes, including maize-and-blue sneakers, and successful completers of the program will earn an MHealthy baseball cap. For qualifying benefits-eligible employees, the Rivals Challenge also can count towards the MHealthy Rewards incentive program.

Rivals Challenge participants also can make an optional donation to Project Healthy Schools,  Currently in more than 60 middle schools across Michigan, this collaboration of U-M and communities is designed to reduce childhood obesity and its long-term health risks.