99 facts about Yoga – The most successful global phenomenon
By: Djina Tangali writer yoga blog Strech.nl
Yoga, it’s the fastest growing trend and yet it’s so old. What once was known only as an ancient spiritual practice among the Indians, yoga is now recognized as a worldwide trend and a full-blown industry on many aspects on a scale never seen before. Does it mean that so many people need stress-relief more than ever and they turn to an age-old practice? That’s just one of several strong reasons for practicing yoga.As more people suffer from the stress brought about by the present society obsessed with ideals of success and money-making culture, the cult following of yoga grows as well. Its popularity is overtaking that of gym workouts because it caters to a wider audience from various ages, shapes, and sizes. An added bonus is that it only requires less equipment, sometimes even none at all.Yoga has reached a wide range of practitioners coming from seekers of stress relief to professionals in the medical field who suggest yoga as a form of treatment for various health issues.With more than 50 yoga styles to choose from, more and more individuals and entrepreneurs are joining the yoga bandwagon. Read any health magazine and view multi-media advertisements and you can clearly see that people are getting crazy about yoga. From its humble and solemn beginnings, yoga is now a booming industry, achieving the levels of showbiz popularity. Yoga has reincarnated itself into a booming global billion dollar industry.
Section 1: The growing industry of yoga
The yoga’s continuous growth makes it one of the top billion dollar industries worldwide.
In the US alone, yoga has seen a significant growth within the past 5 years, particularly in the area of yogi spending patterns marked by an 87 percent growth totaling to more than 10 billion dollars per year!
The number of yogis is increasing every year. Currently, there are over 15 million practitioners in the US alone; and the number increases about 20 percent annually. Is this just a fad? It could be. But then again, it’s a good one. Gauging from the large number of enthusiasts who keep coming back, then there must be something worth coming back to.
The yoga phenomenon is not only growing steadily in the US, but all over the world as well. As Stefanie Syman, author of The Story of Yoga in America, says it perfectly, “Yoga is the first and most successful product of globalization.” The International Yoga Federation has estimated about 300 million enthusiasts of yoga worldwide; the fastest growing count in five years comes from Japan. They even hold yoga festivals for this booming movement where practitioners are heavily into the experience either as a form of physical exercise, spirituality, or for the fashionable side of it.
Perhaps another great factor that contributes to the booming popularity of yoga is that it is among the very few industries that has the least age and gender restrictions as a general practice. There are yoga styles for children as well as yoga styles that can be practiced by seniors. The same goes with gender, although at present, yoga is dominated by females, the principles and routines are designed for both male and female genders.
Seeing the growing statistics of enthusiastic group of yogis means more opportunities on the business side as well. Let’s face it. Yoga practitioners need mats to roll on and to prevent their feet from slipping while doing those fantastic hatha poses, music to accompany to inspire and relax, clothes that can accommodate all the body movements, and yoga teachers who can inspire new yoga enthusiasts.
Definitely, the need is there and the market is hungry for new products that can make their yoga experience even more uplifting than it already is. Thanks to the internet, buying these yoga products and services became so much easier.
So how much is the yogi spending on her/his yoga? If you are marketer, I’m sure you want to know more about the profile of the yoga. Keep reading!
Section 2: Profile of the Yogi
Yogis love to spend. Care to know the details behind the demographics?
Meanwhile, the sales of yoga apparel continue to rise. The demand for yoga gear is already overtaking the demand for sportswear. Because of this yoga trend, everyone wants to wear yoga pants, even those who aren’t practicing it! Going back to the yogis, they do spend a lot of money on various products including DVDs, clothing, mats, classes, and healthier food. On Amazon, the top selling yoga products are yoga pants with a price range between $90 and $130 per piece. This product shares the top-selling limelight with yoga mats, yoga towels, yoga bags, and yoga music on Amazon. Manufacturers and yoga products dealers are definitely cashing in from this booming wellness trend.
Our research on Google Tends astonishingly shows that top trending Yoga search term is: “Yoga Pants”!
Section 3: Interesting facts about Yoga
There are more than 50 yoga styles out there including the ones you can do together with your pet.
So, we all know by now that practicing yoga is beneficial to the body, mind, and spirit. But, there’s more to yoga than that. Let’s check out the other interesting facts surrounding yoga aside from the fact that it originated in India.
If you’re planning to start doing yoga, choose from over 50 styles that are currently known to humankind. Probably, the spark of inspiration came after seeing some hot celebrities or models who have shown-off their latest yoga pose on Instagram or on some brand endorsement stint. For sure, even celebrities benefit from yoga in one way or another. Jennifer Aniston, George Clooney and Drew Barrymore are among those celebrities who are publicly known for practicing yoga.
Those who are on a budget, it is worth noting that yoga can be affordable although some styles can really put a hole in your wallet if you’re not ready for it. Prenatal yoga is one of the most expensive types out there whit an average price tag of $31.30 per class. Bikram, the energizing and weight-loss yoga style is on the mid-range of $20 dollar per class. Ashtanga, while known to be physically demanding, is one of the more popular styles and – with a price tag of $9.39 – is considered as the best deal for its price.
The latest trends in yoga have been spotted and if you wish to explore some newer styles, you may wish to consider going naked yoga. Or practicing AcroYoga, doing acrobatics, or performing yoga poses with your dog (Doga)…seriously. So, basically, whatever your lifestyle or level of eccentricity you have, there is a yoga style available for you.
Reasons why people practice yoga
Enthusiasts practice yoga for various reasons. While many would find it just a fashionable excuse to wear the latest yoga apparel, a good 98% of yoga practitioners do it for the improvement of their wellbeing. Majority are into it for health reasons. We can stop being judgmental now. Most of those you see attending classes are legit. Following the rank of the ratio of yoga enthusiasts are doing it as part of their fitness and exercise routines (80%) while an equal amount of practitioners choose yoga as a means of stress management (73%) and as a spiritually charged activity. More than a quarter (28%) of those into yoga are doing it as a treatment for a health issue .
It is safe to assume that yogis belong to the health-conscious group of humans based on the facts given. With their lifestyle and the number of daily routines and poses they do for wellness and spirituality, they have lesser chances of getting sick. There is a very large chance (87%) that yogis will be able to avoid the dreaded heart disease. They have 55% less chance of developing malignant tumors as well as 50% lesser visits to the doctor as compared to their non-yogi counterparts. If you are a businessman, you may wish to consider hiring or retaining workers who practice yoga just for the fact that they have 27% lower chances of absenteeism due to illnesses.
It is a given that yoga practitioners are healthier. While yoga is a safe practice, yogis are not exempted from physical injuries. Look at that amateur show-off in a yoga class who loves doing headstands, shoulder stands, or poses that put the feet behind the head. If done carelessly, these can result in injuries. That gremlin inside you may just be waiting for that to happen during these pet peeve moments. You got my point.
Not to scare those who are just starting out with yoga, these poses are not hard and fast requirements. As discussed earlier, there are various yoga styles you can choose from. You don’t have to feel bad if you cannot make your toes reach the back of your ears. Yoga is about focus, wellness, mindfulness, and self-healing. Best of all, is that you can practice at your own pace.
Section 4: What is pushing the popularity of yoga?
The growing popularity of yoga is due to several factors. There is more than what meets the eye.
So why is yoga, which has been existence for thousands of years, so popular and is still gaining momentum in terms of industry growth today?
1. The popularity of yoga is mainly being spread by existing yogis.
One of the reasons is traditional word of mouth. For a lot of people yoga is not just a hobby, but a lifestyle that they make part of their identity. In fact in some cases it even has religious overtones. This means that practitioners are often very vocal about their love of yoga, telling their friends, discussing it on social media, and encouraging others to join in.
Being passionate about their practice, they love to share snippets of their experiences and developments through social media, blogs, and other websites and see how many likes, upvotes, repins, and plusses their posts would gather. When they can’t get enough of it, they share another one again, and another, and another…
It also helps that there are celebrities who are known to practice yoga. The yoga instructors have their own websites, social media pages, Twitter accounts, and YouTube channels. Self-promotion is very much welcome; and if it benefits their audience, people wouldn’t mind liking and sharing the posts online.
2. Healthy lifestyles are trendy.
There is an increasing number of individuals who are becoming more conscious about their health than ever before. While trends change, the pedestal is being shared among different fitness practices and products. Everyone is doing the latest diet or exercise regime, and Yoga fits right in to that trend. In some cases doctors are even prescribing yoga to help with injuries, flexibility and overall health. As part of worked based health programs, many employers now also encourage yoga among other activities at the workplace.
3. Accessibility of yoga
There is practically no excuse for not being able to do yoga these days. Yoga can practice yoga at home, at school, at the office, or at any place with an ample space for your poses. Not too long ago, yoga classes seemed to be an activity by the few who are into alternative holistic lifestyles. Well, times have changed. Yoga is available to anyone who is interested. For those who love to practice yoga in a communal setting, there are yoga schools and gyms that host yoga classes in almost every city. Some employers prove yoga at workplace. At home, you can access yoga instructions through YouTube. The unprecedented high level of accessibility of yoga is one the reasons which helps the growth of yoga.
4. Yoga is becoming fashionable.
Yoga can become a personal statement if you wish. There is a yoga style for just about anyone. We wouldn’t be surprised if someone begins to ask about what type of yoga you practice. The clothes and products they wear will easily fly off the shelves as soon as these are released. Now days you ever more people wearing their yoga outfit outdoors.
Yoga has definitely stood the test of time even with the changing fads and fashions. It survived and has evolved into various styles to suit the varying needs of people. It is like religion, but in a freer way. People just keep joining without being forced into it. It is, in some way, a religion and yet it is also a source of healing. Poseur or not, people who take up yoga as a lifestyle or as an enterprise, are reaping benefits in various forms. From which side of the enterprise are you on, the consumer, the entrepreneur, or both?
Businesses in the yoga industry continue to flourish. Consumers welcome the products with open arms and minds. From what we see, yoga industry is here to stay, for several thousands of years more. The yoga industry is growing year after year and this trend does not seem to change.