2024 Spa & Wellness Trend: time-optimized wellness

time-optimized wellness

It’s time to look a the trends and developments that will rock the spa & wellness industry in 2024. Here’s one in our series and stay tuned for our upcoming guide: 7 SPA & WELLNESS TRENDS FOR 2024: A HOSPITALITY HANDBOOK

Time-optimized wellness practises, including micro workouts and mini meditations have been growing in popularity over the last few years. 

Time is fleeting and there’s never enough of it, which is why time-optimized wellness practices, including micro workouts and mini meditations have been growing in popularity over the last few years. 

This trend is still on the rise, driven by social media (mainly TikTok) and the allure of workouts and wellness practices that prioritize efficiency, effectiveness, and work-life balance. 

Micro workouts are mini bursts of activity that make it easier for busy people to fit in some exercise from pretty much wherever they happen to be, whether at home or in the office. Particularly popular with Gen Z, they can be performed several times throughout the day, usually last from one to 10 minutes, and can include high-intensity interval training (HIIT) and circuit training routines combining strength and cardio exercises. Forbes reports that some time-optimized fitness programs “incorporate technology, like wearable fitness trackers or virtual reality workouts, to optimize workout efficiency.” 

They may also be 10 minutes of gentle pilates, low impact cardio (like dancing), yoga, stretching, or anything that qualifies as exercise. A search for micro workouts, one-minute dances, or one minute fitness videos on TikTok yields many varied results, so enthusiasts can mix it up daily.

Fitness Magazine looked into whether micro workouts actually work or are just another useless trend, using examples ranging from “a few reps between meetings, or power-walking up the stairs at the office to two-, three- or 10-minute interval sessions over lunch incorporating 2-3 compound exercises.” 

The article states that “a growing body of research suggests that micro workouts can certainly deliver benefits.” A study published in 2022, for example, found that performing short workouts every day, rather than longer exercise sessions, was enough to improve metabolic health.

Another study found that “brief (20-second), intense stair climbing is a practical, time-efficient strategy to improve [cardiovascular fitness] in previously untrained women.”

And according to a third study, cardiovascular fitness “was similarly increased by a protocol involving ‘sprint snacks’ spread throughout the day and a traditional SIT (sprint interval training) protocol in which bouts were separated by short recovery periods within a single training session.”

While these workouts might not get you ready for the Olympics or burn as many calories as a lengthier session, they can help.

Life is increasingly overwhelming

With life feeling increasingly overwhelming, inflation on the rise, and burnout impacting growing numbers of people, fitting in a little bouts of exercise is important. As we know, engaging in regular physical activity can lower the risk of disease, improve brain health, boost mood, reduce stress, and enhance your capacity to perform daily tasks. Even finding ways to incorporate small amounts of activity into an otherwise sedentary day can have big benefits. Micro workouts are an actionable way to do this.

Micro meditations and micro mindfulness

Beyond the workout are micro meditations and micro mindfulness practices. Many (most?) people don’t have a half hour to meditate first thing in the morning because of families, pets, kids, jobs, general tasks and general exhaustion. And trying and failing to do so on a daily basis  (setting the alarm for 5 am and sleeping through it again and again) can lead to a constant feeling of failure and cycle of self loathing. But most people do have 10 minutes to sit or take a meditative walk, and taking advantage of those minutes provides the benefits of mindfulness and can also help provide a feeling of accomplishment and self worth.

This positive trend has the power to make a big difference in people’s lives as it catches on with a wider audience. 

Spa Executive is published by Book4Time, the leader in guest management, revenue and mobile solutions for the most exclusive spas, hotels, and resorts around the globe. Learn more at book4time.com.

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