Unlike American employee-based corporate wellness, some spa wellness programs are beginning to address quality of life topics beyond the physical. Corporate wellness in America has been a mild success as medical information, prevention-based efforts. Unfortunately, most such programs have not been of a positive nature focused largely on an exuberant, joyful life.
Wellness education at certain spas represents an advance from historic roles. Most associate spas with beauty treatments, baths, pampering and self-indulgent foo foo. Spas offer healing and rehabilitation, programs for diet and weight loss, fitness testing and holistic treatments and prescriptions. These functions will not be abandoned, given their popularity and profitability, but they won’t be the focus if spa wellness trends come into full play. Instead, a wellness era will feature lifestyle education for a quality of life-enhancement philosophy, value system and mindset. Real wellness, after all, is a dramatic alternative to doctors, drugs and Cleveland med spa disease.
The new spa developments are highlighted by a New York-based international organization called Global Spa Summit, or GSS. This group has sponsored and promoted major trend reports for the past three years. GSS-sponsored studies provide resource material for industry leaders and for all others seeking insights on the spa movement worldwide. GSS has demonstrated that wellness beyond risk reduction represents a new market for the spa industry. Such a transformation would promote the general welfare by advancing citizen health status and effectiveness. Thus, while the well-off are advantaged, we might expect some trickle down benefits for the rest of us.
Each year, GSS hosts a grand forum for spa leaders. This annual conference is called the Spa Summit. Last year’s event in Istanbul focused on wellness. The 2011 Summit begins this Sunday in Bali, Indonesia with a theme “Engage the Change: The Customer. The Money. The Future.”
Spa Wellness Around the Globe
* From Sweden – Anna Bjurstam, Managing Director of Raison d’Etre, perceives today’s consumers as more results oriented, interested in advanced lifestyle coaching, nutrition and chemical-free products. Customers recognize that beauty also comes from within. Wellness is the future; the general mindset of the consumer is learning to live a healthier lifestyle. Ms. Bjurstam emphasizes the importance of accurate information, preferably science-based.
* From Brazil – Gustavo Albanesi, President of the Brazilian Spa Association, reported impressive growth attributed to “a new wellness culture searching for increased life quality, especially in big cities.” This culture has changed the way people look at spas, which are becoming part of day-by-day life. The growth of the spa industry in Brazil is also fueled by major upcoming events, particularly the Olympics and World Cup.
* From Europe/Austria – Sha, a spa owner, reports an interest in “Alpine style wellness,” adding, “The spa community in Austria must confront and address the essential needs of our high-performance society.” This latter addresses mental balance and an array of holistic approaches for stress management (particularly burnout-prevention) and the “real life” of a high-speed society. In Austria and around the world, there is a greater recognition of new social responsibilities for the spa community, The key is incorporating mental enhancement via philosophy, science and the art.”