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Millennials Give Kaiser Permanente a Spin

San Franciscans enjoyed a DJ spin class hosted by NBA stars Stephen Curry and Chris Paul—who were there to support Kaiser Permanente’s #OwnNow campaign.

The outdoor flagstones of Jessie Square in the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in downtown San Francisco were crowded with stationary bikes on Tuesday, Nov. 4.

Young professionals in leggings and T-shirts hurried in, grabbed their seats, and started texting and photographing with their iPhones.

Up on stage, three fitness instructors got the crowd ready for a workout, while near the meditation pond two DJs fired up the music.

The 45-minute outdoor workout was a special event hosted by Kaiser Permanente and Flywheel, a nationwide spin cycle exercise company. Together, they were getting out the message that Millennials, people born between 1980 and 2000, need to prioritize their health.

For Kaiser Permanente, the event was just one piece in a larger campaign called #OwnNow, which launched in October 2013 when health care coverage became a reality for millions of previously uninsured Americans through health care reform.

#OwnNow was designed to encourage young adults to lead healthy and active lifestyles where they live, work, study, and play—and to obtain health coverage.

Stephen Curry, far left, at the Nov. 4 event, is both point guard for the Golden State Warriors professional basketball team and a Kaiser Permanente Total Health Ambassador promoting the #OwnNow campaign at Northern California public events.

For the campaign, Kaiser Permanente enlisted NBA stars Chris Paul and Stephen Curry as Kaiser Permanente Total Health Ambassadors. The two support the health message via Tweets and other social media outreach, advertising, and live events.

#OwnNow also gets out the word that health care coverage is not just for emergency situations: Young, active people need to take control of their health and their coverage—and Kaiser Permanente offers an option with high-quality care and service.

“Emergencies are not the only time health coverage is important,” said Curry at the launch of #OwnNow in 2013. “Coverage is important for your overall health and well-being. It is difficult to get the most out of life if you’re unprepared when something goes wrong.”

Millennials, also known as Gen Yers, are now an even larger population than Baby Boomers. According to news reports, Millennials have their own characteristics: tech-savvy, collaborative, creative, feedback-focused, fast-paced, work-life balance oriented, inquisitive, and high-achieving.

They are also a demographic lagging in health care coverage.

Participants at the San Francisco event worked out with Curry and Paul as the sun began to set. They spun their towels, turned up the gears on the bikes, and even sang along to the music before applauding the athletes and then taking lots of selfies.

Diane Tseng, 29, works near the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and is a Flywheel fan from her New York City days. She said she took away from the event “healthy living and positive awareness of health.”

Eric Tu, 23, follows the athletes on Twitter. He drove from his home in Davis to attend what was his very first spin class.

“I am looking for health care,” Tu said. “And now I am going to give Kaiser Permanente some careful consideration.”

Follow #OwnNow on Facebook or Twitter.