Yoga And Wellness As An Industry

Dr Ishwar V. Basavaraddi

Wellness is a thought, an ever-evolving traditional trend in India and abroad.

Traditional health practices like Yoga, Ayurveda, Naturopathy as well as many complimentary systems of medicines have universally advocated the concept of physical and mental health. Wellness can be understood as a way of living, that seeks to maintain the right balance of all its six dimensions, namely, Physical, Emotional, Intellectual, Social, Occupational and Spiritual.

Over the years, the concepts of ‘Wellness’ have broadened assuming a dynamic definition, including the individual’s aspiration for Social Acceptance and Collective Welfare.

Image Source: freepngimg.com

The Sociological and Psychological factors propelling the millennials to follow the trend of Wellness have developed since over a decade. Therefore, one of the most traditional ways of ensuring visible health wellness, Yoga, has become a buzz among the present generation.

Yoga as a wellness business is a fast-growing industry when it comes to holistic health. In the current scenario, both government and non-government bodies have taken up unique initiatives to create awareness about Yoga and traditional systems of medicines. Wellness industries are considering Yoga as an effectively integrated modality to maintain optimal health. Moreover, it is experiencing upward trends in revenue generation in recent years because Yoga is becoming a popular and acceptable health care system across the world.

Yoga For Wellness. Why?

Yogic practices help to improve individual performances on multiple levels, especially in Sports, Education and Occupation. Other physical exercises like Gyming, swimming, cycling, etc., give external stress to systems of the body. However, Yogic practices are known to provide relaxation to the body to enhance efficiency and stamina. Yoga helps to attain a flexible body, provides energy and O2 to every cell in the body by the way of deep breathing (Pranayama), contraction and relaxation of muscles through asana, enhanced functions of all systems through purification (Shat kriyas), harmony and peace relaxation techniques like Yoga Nidra, meditation and Yogic diet modification (Mithahara).  All these components of Yoga ensure conducive body-mind movement, which eventually creates wholesome health-wellbeing for the regular practitioners.  Yoga has no side effects. Though adverse effects may happen when practised without proper guidance or supervision.

The Indian Wellness Industry

Image Source: FRANCHISE INDIA WELLNESS

India is slowly becoming a hub for medical tourism attracting medical tourists from all over the world. Yoga tourism has emerged as a new concept and grown with the ‘travel to feel well’ trend. To promote this, change and standardize the system of alternative medicines, the Indian government has set up a dedicated Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH) with the aim of providing importance to the system and to promote these ancient healthcare components. In recent times, due to faulty lifestyle, the Indian population is suffering from high morbidity and low mortality rate caused due to the triple burden of infectious, communicable and NCDs.

The incidence of NCDs and the consequential morbidity becomes even more prevalent in the ageing population. Chronic NCDs like Diabetes, Hypertension, Cardiovascular Disease, etc., have increased over five-fold in the ageing population, especially for those above 60 years. Yoga has an important role in preventing NCDs. In view of this, the traditional health care system attracts more patients to the field of Yoga.  

Moreover, as per a report published by The Economics Times in 2019, “the worldwide wellness industry is valued at an astonishing USD 4.2 trillion and according to FICCI, in India, this figure is estimated to be INR 490 billion.

Source: Global Wellness Institute, Global Wellness Economy at 4.2 Trillion.

Furthermore, in an attempt to increase the drive for the Wellness sector in India, the government has operationalized 19,282 Ayushman Bharat-Health and Wellness Centres (AB-HWCs) as of 17th June 2019. The top 5 States/UTs with respect to operational of AB-HWCs as on 17.06.2019 were Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu. The Map below shows State/UT wise distribution of these centres all over India.

State/UT wise operation of 19,282 AB-HWCs. Image Source: data.gov.in

These aforementioned top 5 states accounted for 51.12% of the total AB-HWCs operationalized in India as a whole as on 17th June 2019.
{Note:
 Source: RAJYA SABHA SESSION – 249 STARRED QUESTION NO. 118.}

The wellness sector has the potential to generate over 3 million job opportunities. Recent research studies show that Yoga is more cost-effective as compared to other conventional treatment modalities currently available in the health sectors.

References:

Global Wellness Economy Estimate Data: https://health.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/industry/how-wellness-industry-has-emerged-as-a-thriving-sector-in-the-past-10-years/72901635

AB-HWCs: https://data.gov.in/resources/stateut-wise-operational-ayushman-bharat-health-and-wellness-centre-ab-hwc-17-june-2019

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