Guest Post by Rebecca Coleman
2019 was quite the year, with the climate crisis (declared the word of the year) which came sharply into the spotlight, championed by the unflagging efforts of a 16-year-old girl. The meat-free revolution also went mainstream this year, thanks to the “Beyond Burger” being available at most fast-food chains.
With a new year and a new decade before us, there are some emerging wellness trends that we anticipate will take the spotlight in 2020. Here are just some of the wellness trends that we expect to see this year.
Trend #1: Tech Will Take Over Our Wellness Workouts
Technology is increasingly taking our workouts from the gym or yoga studio, and bringing them right into our living rooms. We’re seeing a focus on in-home workouts, based on the popularity of workout interfaces like Mirror and Peloton. Nintendo is about to release Ring Fit Adventure – an add-on to the Nintendo Switch that incorporates you physically into the virtual world of a video game, and delivers a smart workout to boot.
Trend #2: Wellness Offerings Will Become More Intensive
As science begins to keep pace with wellness trends, getting intensive doses of holistic care becomes more accessible. IV therapy is a pumped-up version of taking vitamins, infusing your body with a strong dose of B-Vitamins or Iron if you are feeling droopy. Intensive stays at spas, including massage, yoga, aromatherapy, healthy food and the naturally healing waters of hot springs are also becoming a more popular choice for travellers.
Trend #3: CBD Will Become More Mainstream
CBD, or cannabidiol, is derived from the hemp plant, a cousin to marijuana. Unlike marijuana’s key ingredient, THC, CBD will not get you high. It has been proven to have many health benefits; Hemp or CBD oil has been shown to limit oil production, making it a great treatment for acne-prone skin. It’s soothing for sensitive skin and is loaded with antioxidants, making it a great choice for anti-aging applications. It’s equally great for pain relief if you have arthritis, muscle or joint pain, and can be found in balms or even soaps!
Trend #4: Wellness Programs Will Be Delivered Through Our Devices
As technology gets smarter, more and more wellness applications are being delivered to us through our devices. Earlier this year, Telus launched Babylon, an app that allows you to see a doctor through video chat. There are now a variety of tests that you can take via your smartphone, and a “smart sleep mask” that gently lures you to sleep and then wakes you up using red and blue light technology. Helthe Connect is an app created to connect people and organizations with wellness practitioners—kind of a matchmaking app—but for your health and wellness journey. Bios Medical offers blood pressure monitoring devices that send data to your phone to help determine your average blood pressure over a week, and to figure out how to manage it better.
Trend #5: Light Therapy Will Become Accessible At Home
There is a growing body of evidence that light therapy is hugely effective—especially during these dark winter months when natural sunlight is increasingly rare. Light Therapy can be accessed at home by using commercially-produced lamps that help mimic the effects of the sun’s rays. This therapy is quite effective in dealing with Seasonal Affective Disorder. Other more powerful forms of light therapy are thought to help with sports injuries and pain, relaxation and stress relief.
Trend #6: Sound Bathing Will Come Back
Everything old is new again, it seems, and sound bathing, an ancient wellness practice, is no exception. Participants lay on the floor on yoga mats, and get comfy. Then the practitioner plays sounds on singing bowls made of crystal. The overall effect on your brain is much like meditation; it causes a state of deep relaxation. Sound bathing may have other positive effects, both physically and mentally as well.
Trend #7: Forest Bathing Will Continue To Gain Popularity
This growing trend is about more than just taking a walk in the woods. Based on the ancient Japanese practice of shinrin-yoku, forest bathing is more like a walking meditation in the woods. It’s about mindfulness and observation, breathing and seeing, rather than cardio. Connecting with nature is proven to lower levels of cortisol, reduce blood pressure, and even increase immunity. Curious? Join in a Bagua Walking Meditation, as demonstrated by Puti Meditation College, where participants in this group meditation walk in circles around a tree, focusing their energy on it, while holding various poses.
For more information on this year’s emerging wellness trends, and to sample some of these trends for yourself, check out The Wellness Show at the Vancouver Convention Centre West, February 1 & 2, 2020. For tickets, and information, visit www.thewellnessshow.com.