Global Wellness Summit: the future of the wellness industry

From Palm Beach (Florida), the Global Wellness Summit, the prestigious event that brings together the international leaders of the wellness economy, will arrive in Cesena from October 6 to 8, hosted by Technogym.

Presentations, seminars, discussions: the top 10 most important sectors of the entire industry will be discussed, composing a market worth 3.7 trillion dollars, or 5% of the global economy. That’s why it is necessary to introduce the industry scenario through data, consumption habits and some of the most interesting trends that characterized the 2017 Summit.

The wellness industry is booming
We are well aware that the habits of the most popular consumer clusters (Millennials and the following Generation X) have evolved from the mere search for physical fitness and fast slimming diets. Despite the market data confirming that they will go into fitness centres more often, true wellness goals is are outlined on a more frequent or daily practice outside of fitness centres.

Examples of these new goals: making healthier food choices, monitoring health, movement and lifestyle through wearable devices, creating indoor and outdoor environments capable of influencing mental well-being and of creating positive experiences to combat stress in an organic way.

The key to the success of this industry, especially for the new generations, can be said with a simple statement: create engaging and tailored experiences.

One way can be through the creation of personalised products and services: if you know you can choose salad ingredients through a food delivery app, if you buy running shoes online by choosing colours and materials, you expect a customized offer to be always available and above all, in real time.

Wellness doesn’t retire

Despite the importance of the new generations, for too long the consumer group of 50 years and above, was overlooked by those marketers who concentrated their efforts elsewhere. This demographic reflects the statistical data: the world is ageing; the tilt of life expectancy has shifted forward, with people who want to live as well as possible for as long as possible.
Wellness for the elderly is now a real deal
Older generations should not be overlooked for another reason as well. Old age brings with it a deeper understanding of health and well-being than younger generations, going beyond the aesthetic side of a healthy body to a more holistic approach. Older generations look more toward activities related to relaxation, to positivity, to spending more time with the loved ones, combined with a healthier diet. To put it frankly:

In the minds of these people it doesn't matter if they don't have a 50-year-old physique anymore, even at 75 they still want to keep a tenet at the centre of their life, to live a wellness life.

Wellness architecture and human-centric design

Design for design’s sake, as a mere aesthetic tool, is not consistent with the concept of well-being that has now permeated our contemporary lifestyle. Jeffrey Abramson (The Tower Companies) also recalled this at last year's Global Wellness Summit, where Wellness Architecture was discussed:

People want to live in buildings that can elevate the spirit, spaces that encourage them to work every day with pleasure, and environments that can create a connection with nature and stimulate a good synergy between colleagues.

During the same conference, Alfredo Carvajal of Delos Living explains: "Sustainability means putting the human being back at the centre of design; it is obvious that beauty, form and style are important, but daily health and wellbeing must remain at the forefront, closely linked to performance when, for example, we talk about workspaces. We need a more efficient value proposition, which goes far beyond cost sharing between construction and upkeep of a building whose sole purpose is to fit people inside.”
Wellness and architecture, redefining the spaces for your body, mind and spirit

Club: European gyms still in good shape

Deloitte's Health & Fitness 2018 report shows a positive trend: in Europe, the number of clubs has grown by 3.2% compared to last year, with an increase of 0.7% in the average number of members per centre, for a turnover increase of almost 2%. About 60 million Europeans go to the gym, with over 65% of them located in just five countries: Germany (20%), England (19%), France (9%) and both Italy and Spain at 8%.
Wellness moves with you
A lot of the wellness world still passes through the gym, even though it is no longer the exclusive temple in which to keep fit. In fact, we are constantly moving, taking into account that we can give up an exclusive subscription in exchange for those wellness possibilities we nowadays also find on holiday, because wellness is not just aesthetics and body shape, but a true life choice.

Wellness on-the-go, independent training

According to the data of the AH&LA Lodging Survey 2017, hotels that include fitness amenities have risen from 63% in 2004 to 85% in 2016, a choice that applies to all facilities except the low-end. A solid trend that follows the principles of the so-called experience economy, very much appreciated by new generations who travel often and do not want to give up their daily appointment with wellness on-the-go.

Guests often prefer to have exclusive equipment with a virtual coach in their own rooms, to carry out their training session independently.

If a technological update with new equipment is noticeable, what’s more interesting in the world of hotel management is the growing demand for fitness equipment in hotel rooms. Enrico Bracesco, Technogym Global Commercial Director, also confirmed this trend during the Palm Beach 2017 Summit: "Guests often prefer not to go to the dedicated area of the hotel, but to have exclusive equipment with a virtual coach inside the room, to carry out their own fitness session independently".

Home digital fitness

Equally exponential is the interest on home and digital fitness. Home workouts with streaming lessons, remote personal training services and access to digital platforms with training programs, videos and many other wellness content: these are just some of the examples with which this trend is emerging and redesigning the entire wellness industry. According to Goldman Sachs analyst Aarti Kapoor, the potential of this market segment is enormous, with a value that by 2022 will exceed 27 billion dollars.
digital wellness is getting into your daily lives
Technogym has grasped this potential, increasing its media-related investments and expanding the resources already at its disposal. The Italian company is enriching its Mywellness Cloud, the wellness platform used by more than 10 million people through dedicated apps, with media content and coaching services, both live and on demand, which in the words of Technogym founder and President Nerio Alessandri: "will be central to our consumer strategy and to the consolidation of our Technogym 4.0 project".

Silence tourism

Spirituality, contemplation, silence... as a counterbalance to the explosion of digital fitness there are those who, like Franz Linser in his speech, “Wellness As It Was Meant to Be” at the Summit a year ago, identifies as a current trend the Silent Spa "to restore inner silence". A conscious escape for that tourist who needs a few days out of the rhythms of the big city and the hectic consumption of mobile technology.

A holiday to restore inner silence.

Therefore, we are not just talking about wellness resorts, but also about facilities specialised in welcoming customers looking for typical spa treatments, combined with a therapy based on total tranquillity immersed in nature. Recent studies by Duke University in North Carolina confirm the benefits of detox tourism: two hours of silence a day reduce stress hormones in the hippocampal area, limiting the problems associated with anxiety and depression.
Mindfulness and quiet to unwind

Biohacking, the brain runs the show

There are now natural and chemical remedies originating from Silicon Valley and that are now crossing the borders for consumption on a global scale. Supplements that can reduce the so-called brain fog, increasing attention levels and keeping stress levels low. In economic terms, in 2015, the health of our minds was quantified in a market of 2.3 billion dollars; by 2025, it could be worth almost 6 times as much.
Biohacking, the brain is the director of the show
That is why companies such as Nootobox, Trubrain and Neurohacker have gained millions developing cognitive performance stimulators based on amino acids such as l-teanine, phenylethylamine (happiness hormone stimulant), Omega 3 in high percentages and other substances either natural or synthesized. As Columbia University psychiatrist Drew Ramsey explains: "Mood, concentration, creativity and trust are all brain phenomena. The brain runs the show. The brain is the director of the show.”

Better and healthier cuisine

Times and eating habits have changed. For the better. As Veronica Schreibeis, president of the Global Wellness Institute, recalls: "the evolution of the role of women in contemporary society had once left a void filled with foods that were quick to prepare, full of preservatives and to eat in front of the TV".
Healthy food, nutritious cuisine
However, today we are much more aware of the correlation between what we eat and preventable diseases such as obesity and diabetes. We prefer ingredients of transparent and farm-to-table origin, we choose them by customising the dishes we eat outside and we bring to the table a diet much richer in fruits and vegetables than a few years ago.

This trend is confirmed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which reports that spending on organic products (available in three out of four supermarkets) continues to rise on double digit, despite the higher cost. The same trend is happening also in Europe, with a growth rate more than doubled in recent years.

Delicious, healthy sweets
Of course, today stores shelves offer a much wider selection of food. Nonetheless, what is changing is not so much the offer, but our consumer awareness, which drives us to be more informed.

Nowadays, we are getting more and more convinced that the ancient Latin proverb mens sana in corpore sano is more than an educated catchphrase.

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