The Adrian Loveridge Column – Wellness Industry BOOM!

The global wellness industry grew by 12.8 per cent in the last two years from US$3.7 trillion in 2015 to US$4.2 trillion in 2017, according to a recent report by Global Wellness Economy Monitor released by the non-profit Global Wellness Institute (GWI).

At a recent conference held in St. Eustatius, founder of the marketing and business development consultants, Mind Body Spirit Network, Sallie Fraenkel, stated that the wellness sector is ‘three times larger than the global pharmaceutical industry and growing exponentially’.

With a nearly perfect year round climate, it would seem that Barbados and the Caribbean appear well positioned to capitalise on the enormous further potential to build this massive market.

To help define exactly what the general understanding and definition of the ‘wellness industry’ is and the revenue it generates, the Global Wellness Institute (GWI) states it includes the following key sectors:

Beauty and anti-ageing – US$1,083 billion; Healthy eating, nutrition and weight loss – US$702 billion; Wellness Tourism – US$639 billion; Preventative/personalised medicine and public health – US$575 billion; Traditional and complementary medicine – US$360 billion; Spa industry – US$119 billion; Fitness-Mind-Body – US$595 billion; Workplace wellness – US$48 billion and Wellness real estate – US$134 billion.

Perhaps a simpler definition may be ‘the wellness tourism economy is all expenditures made by tourists who seek to improve or maintain their well-being during or as a result of their trip’.

World travellers made 691 million wellness trips in 2015, which was 104.4 million more than in 2013.

The spa sector alone jumped from 105,591 worldwide locations in 2013 to 121,595 in 2015, employing over 230,000 workers.

Wikipedia lists the biggest individual country markets for wellness tourism as 1) United States 2) Germany 3) Japan 4) France 5) Austria.

By region, Latin America including the Caribbean is the fourth largest in terms of trips and expenditure, with Jamaica and the Dominican Republic being the only islands, rated in the top ten within this geographical category.

Every source researched, concluded that wellness tourists are generally high yield tourists, spending on average somewhere between 130 and 165 per cent more than the ‘typical tourist’.

Clearly, this is a market where we can do considerably better than at present. With our envious diversity and reach of airlift, especially from North America together with its proximity, what are the further opportunities?

In the United Kingdom, I was surprised that leading specialist tour operators including, Wellbeing Escapes, Health and Fitness Travel, Healthy Holidays and Spa Dreams did not feature Barbados at all, even though some did include options like The Body Holiday in neighbouring St. Lucia.

Are we largely missing out on this huge high value source of additional visitors and what is the most cost-effective way to reach them?

Could a specifically targeted familiarisation (FAM) trip for those travel companies specialising in this market be a start, to help highlight our natural surroundings, healthy eating options, yoga and wellness locations and massive diverse water sports possibilities?

17 comments

  • Melissa jerace lol

    Like

  • How are Barbadians capable of promoting a wellness industry and at the same time earn the reputation as the NCD capital of the region?

    Liked by 1 person

  • PoorPeacefulandPolite

    The uneducated naysayers have got us into this legless country we are becoming. Barbados can only now resurrect her self confidence one positive idea at a time. Our young entrepreneurs are already showing you old cadavers how they can turn a bad reputation into a FUTURE !! If we don’t support them, they will leave like our nurses have done .

    Like

  • RE Are we largely missing out on this huge high value source of additional visitors and what is the most cost-effective way to reach them?

    Could a specifically targeted familiarisation (FAM) trip for those travel companies specialising in this market be a start, to help highlight our natural surroundings, healthy eating options, yoga and wellness locations and massive diverse water sports possibilities?

    ADRIAN
    THESE ARE TWO GOOD REASONABLE QUESTIONS THAT ARE WORTHY OF SERIOUS THOUGHT

    THEY HAVE NOTHING AT ALL IN THIS WORLD. OR THE NEXT TO WHETHER OR NOT BARBADOS IS the NCD capital of the region

    Like

  • Parts of this wellness model may be easy to implement. Having a fitness trainer who does a simple routine early in the morning and ‘late’ in the afternoon may be a selling point for some tourists.

    Like

  • No equipment required and free for the guests.

    Like

  • A safe three mile walk early in the morning. See the rising sun.
    Keep it simple, cheap and sweet.

    Make the tourist feel like a person and not a chicken to be plucked

    Like

  • Americans are crazy 🙂 Throw in someone who does yoga and some tai- chi looking stuff and they will come. I just created 20 new jobs

    Like

  • A Western medical and health researcher, Dr. Tony Gryffin, looked for an explanation and understanding (in orthodox Western medical terms) of the basis for the reputed life enhancing and healing qualities of ancient Asian forms of exercise like Yoga, Tai Chi, and Qigong. He discovered that these forms of exercise do seem to have measurable benefits in bringing better oxygen saturation to the blood compared to our traditional Western style workouts.

    Metarobics: Health from the inside out

    Metarobics* is based on the research of Dr. Tony Gryffin, related to the need for a physiological understanding of how and why exercises such as Tai Chi (and forms of Yoga and Qigong focused on relaxation and the breath), resulted in benefits for health and chronic conditions. Based on feedback from the general public, researchers, and the medical field, there existed a need to understand mechanisms of benefits beyond concepts of “Qi” as “Vital Energy,” in order to better promote and understand these exercises. It is not the goal of Metarobic theory to replace nor undermine Traditional Chinese Medicine, but rather to establish support for a better physiological understanding of these exercises.

    Underlying the basic premise of Metarobic theory,* is if physiological benefits are being derived, then there are measurable physiological mechanisms which can be measured and understood. From this understanding, exercises such as forms of Tai Chi, Qigong and Yoga might be better prescribed, to maximize benefits for various chronic conditions.

    *Metarobics comes from observations and research supporting benefits related to enhanced oxygen based metabolism, as well as the root of “Meta” as “superior.” Metarobics is focused on enhanced oxygen use in the body. Hypoxia (deficiency of oxygen reaching the tissues) underlies or complicates a wide range of chronic conditions (including cancer, heart, lung and kidney disease, diabetes, asthma, arthritis, chronic pain, compromised immunity, and more). Metarobics offers an evidence based theoretical construct, which future research will enhance understanding of, or reshape into new areas of understanding. The important thing is that Metarobics supports the need for a physiological understanding of the benefits of exercises for health and chronic conditions, which are neither aerobic nor anaerobic.

    http://metarobics.org/index.html

    Overview of Metarobic Effects on the Body

    The remarkable benefits reported by tai chi students with cancer and various chronic conditions prompted an examination of how and why these exercises were providing benefits for health. The scientific literature is primarily focused on the benefits of Tai Chi, with little in the way of theory beyond “Qi” as “Vital Energy.”

    This still leaves the question of how and why breath focused relaxation exercises might benefit health from a measurable physiological perspective. Research demonstrated a link between a unique effect on enhanced blood oxygen saturation, diffusion, and oxygen metabolism, as well as potential effects on hypoxia (deficiency of oxygen reaching the tissues). Hypoxia underlies or complicates a surprisingly wide range of chronic conditions, including cancer. Following are charts and data documenting differences between Metarobic exercises and aerobic forms of exercise. See “Mindful Exercise: Metarobics, Healing, and the Power of Tai Chi” for details, and the importance for a variety of chronic conditions, as well as supporting case stories.

    metarobics(DOT)org/metarobic-research.html

    Like

  • Again we are hearing talk from Kerri Symmonds that LIAT will have to be recapitalized to the tune of about 100 million USD. This coming after the last government guaranteed a CDB load for about the same about. What is going on?

    Like

  • Again we are hearing talk from Kerri Symmonds that LIAT will have to be recapitalized to the tune of about 100 million USD. This coming after the last government guaranteed a CDB load for about the same about. What is going on?(Quote)

    If the Barbados government wanted to make savings of $30m under its BERT plan, why then did it not sell its 49 per cent chares ownership in LIAT?

    Like

  • @ PoorPeacefulandPolite
    Well said..
    The future of our country lies in those citizens between the ages of 14 and 39. The country is now barren of innovation and creativity especially in persons above the age of 55. Unless leadership recognizes that we are no longer in pre 1966, I am afraid to say that within twenty years or less, Hal’s position of a truly failed state stands a very good chance of becoming a very real reality.
    This talk of becoming a “ wellness” destination goes back to the days of what to do with the St. Joseph hospital.
    And of course our parasitic private sector did nothing. Right how they want to get into the energy business but want government to give them every possible tool. Lazy and indifferent .
    In recent times we have gone the easy route of attracting bogus medical schools.
    By the way where is the huge investment coming out of local hoteliers?Oops I forgot we got Sandals and Butch Stuart to do that fuh we.
    Ask Butch to build dome spas and so on. Then we can sit by and criticise him like we were doing until the reality that talk is cheap hit us between our eyes. $ 400 million down north to pump up the economy. Where are the matching investments from those who had so much to say only a few months ago?
    Not a failed state yet but………

    Like

  • Sandals and Butch Stuart .

    Under which party government did ” Sandals and Butch Stuart ” establish in Barbados ?

    Like

  • It is my understanding that the concessions ( DLP ) that were so terrible are okay now because the ( BLP ) is giving

    similar concessions to all Hoteliers and Tourism related businesses.

    Is this correct ?

    Like

  • Pingback: Wellness Industry Boom: By Adrian Loverage – Barbados Underground Blog | Guyanese Online

  • Pingback: Wellness Industry Boom: By Adrian Loverage – Barbados Underground Blog

  • Pingback: Wellness Industry Boom: By Adrian Loverage – Barbados Underground Blog

Join in the discussion, you never know how expressing your view may make a difference.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s