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6 Australian Trends to Watch in 2022

6 Australian Wellness Trends to Watch in 2022

By Alice Hall

Not long ago, the world was turned upside down, forcing us all to restructure our lives and reevaluate what it means to be “well.” And if there’s one thing we learned, it’s that the definition of wellness is changing. It can no longer be defined by physical fitness alone. In fact, over three-quarters of Australians think that being physically active helps their mental health.

As part of our annual Mindbody Wellness Index, one of the industry’s most comprehensive studies, we surveyed over 1,600 Australians to see how this shift will take shape in the coming year.

From immune health and intellectual wellness, to mental and sexual wellness, to music, and pets, here’s what you can expect—across all dimensions of wellness—in 2022.

Australian Immune Wellness

From the inside out: increased interest in immune health

It’s no surprise the global pandemic sparked an increased interest in immune health. One out of three global consumers reported they were more concerned about immune health than before the pandemic started. This trend will continue in 2022, as over half (52%) of the Australian population is focused on their health and wellness because they want to strengthen their immune system to withstand illness and disease. Nearly two-thirds (61%) of people report that they’re more focused on health and wellness because they want to live a long and healthy life.

One in five Australians has tried new services or treatments that support immune health, but another 43% are interested in trying those services moving forward—women being more interested than men. Services that Australians have used more this year compared to last year include red light therapy, IV therapy (vitamin drip), and Hyperbaric oxygen therapy. Other immune health services Australians are exploring include injection therapy (such as B12 shots), infrared saunas, and hydrotherapy. We expect a focus on these services to show up in various places this year—such as Liquid Room, a studio that offers both yoga classes and infrared sauna sessions. If you’re looking to explore these services further, The Dripclub Unley focuses on rejuvenating and revitalising the body with IV Nutrient Therapy. Recoverie, is an all-in-one destination designed to optimise physical recovery, through various services including Hyperbaric Chambers and hot and cold therapy.

Australia Intellectual Wellness

Intellectual wellness: your biggest asset

Today, the definition of wellness means more than just staying physically fit—Australians are increasingly focused on intellectual wellness.

The evolving definition of wellness is bringing more attention to the importance of intellectual wellbeing as part of a holistic routine. More than a quarter of Australians ranked intellectual wellness within the top three most important dimensions of wellness. Over a third of them reported that intelligence inspires confidence. To engage in this dimension of wellness, 48% of Australians say they spend time on creativity and stimulating activities.

Intellectual wellness encourages one to explore new concepts, enhance skills, and challenge the mind through continuous learning. Fun ways to exercise this dimension of wellness include mentally stimulating activities such as pottery, painting and taking a class to learn a new instrument (check out Shine Music Studio)

Australian Mental Wellness

Mental wellness is top priority

Mental health was ranked the most important dimension of wellness by the greatest number of Australians. Half of Australia (50%) agree the pandemic has negatively affected their mental wellbeing. The pandemic appears to have had a more significant impact on Gen Z and millennials than older generations—as 60% of both Gen Z and millennials reported the pandemic negatively affected their mental health versus 32% of younger boomers.  Half of Australians said they are focused on their health and wellbeing because they want to reduce stress. Gen Z are the most stressed generational group while younger boomers are the least stressed.

But how can fitness, beauty and integrative health services support mental wellness? The leading reason that consumers exercise is to feel better mentally (44% reported this) Three-quarters of Australians believe being physically active helps their mental health. In the past year, 37% of Australians have incorporated physical fitness into their routine to help support their mental wellbeing while 19% have added breathwork, , and 13% have added wellness treatments like acupuncture to their routines. Studios, such as In Balance Wellness provide acupuncture to encourage healing on many levels.

26% of Australians have started meditation to assist their mental health. True Frequency offers energy healing and meditation retreats to develop an understanding of self-care.

Over half of all Australians (and 60% of women) said they feel more confident when they get regular beauty treatments—in fact, 21% of Australians book beauty and grooming services to boost their self-confidence.

Australian Sexual Wellness

Sexual wellness is taboo no more

Sexual wellness, a facet of wellbeing that’s been historically kept behind closed doors, is now being talked about more than ever before. The once-taboo topic is becoming mainstream thanks to service providers, retailers, and influencers, as well as movements to empower sexual wellness. So much so that the global sexual wellness market is expected to reach $125.1 billion by 2026.

In 2022, consumers plan to define sexual wellness in new ways by taking part in a variety of sex-centric services. Nearly three in ten Australians report they're very likely to try new wellness activities that relate to sexual wellness (including individual or group therapy sessions, workshops, sexual performance therapies, and treatments for sexual health). Men and millennials are the most likely to have tried or to be interested in trying sex therapy or coaching.

While sexual wellness is not the most important dimension of wellness to Australia—falling behind dimensions such as mental, physical, spiritual, or financial—31% actively seek information or resources to help them improve their sexual wellness or skills. These services might include sex therapy, vaginal steaming, and erectile dysfunction treatments.

Almost half of Australians say they’re sexually fulfilled, and it may be worth taking notes from those people, as they claim to be stronger across the other dimensions of wellness than those who are less sexually fulfilled. Sexually-fulfilled Australians are not only more engaged in their wellness through healthy habits, but they also feel more connected to others, feel more spiritually fulfilled, and are generally happy.  

 

Pet Friendly Services

Wellness isn’t just for humans anymore

Whether they’re registered as emotional support animals or not, pets are well known for offering their owners love and comfort. This proved especially true during the pandemic. According to the RSPCA, Australia has one of the highest pet ownership rates in the world, with approximately 61% of households owning pets. Now, with these furry friends in tow, consumers are on the lookout for pet-friendly wellness experiences.

Two in five Australians expressed interest in going to a fitness establishment that's pet-friendly. The same proved true for the beauty sector, with 39% of consumers interested in going to pet-friendly salons or spas.

For both the fitness and salon/spa pet-friendly experiences, Gen Z and millennials expressed the most interest (over 50%) in pet-friendly establishments. In addition, Australians are game for a wide variety of animal-oriented wellness experiences for healing. A third of Australians surveyed say they’d take part in goat yoga, cat cafés, spending time with horses, etc.—with women, Gen Z and Millennials being the most interested. Keen to try it out? Beach Fit Bondi is tapping into this market by offering a pet-friendly environment at their studio. In Perth, dogs are often spotted on the gym floor, supporting your workout at Bobridge Cycle and Fitness Studio. For those looking outside the norm, Karmably offers yoga classes with baby goats in various locations across Australia.

Motivated by Music

Workout classes are the new Spotify

From silent discos to decade-themed workout classes, music plays an important role in fitness experiences, particularly for Gen Z and millennials. For 61% of Australians, music strongly motivates them during fitness activities—younger Australians are more likely than older generations to agree that music fires up their workouts.

In fact, Australians who agree that music is strongly motivating during workouts report exercising more frequently each week (53% exercising 3+ times per week) and for longer durations (68% for 31+ minutes) than those who aren’t motivated by music (47% exercise 3+ times per week, and 62% typically work out 31+ minutes). One in ten (30%) of Australians say they often chose fitness classes based on the type of music being played (however, this is much more important for Gen Z and Millennials than Gen Xers and younger boomers).

Music doesn’t just pump consumers up while they’re working out. Over a third (38%) of Australians turn to their fitness and wellness routines to discover new music for life outside studio walls, with younger Australians being more likely to discover new music this way

Bike Bar inspires clients to stimulate their brains and ignite their bodies using epic playlists, through cycle classes, dance and aerobics. Hustle Boxing, which specialises in boxing and high intensity training offers a range of themed sweats with curated beats.

The ever-changing definition of wellness presents us with new opportunities to care for ourselves and our loved ones—even our furry friends.

About the author:

Alice Hall

Alice Hall

Senior Regional Marketing Specialist APAC

Mindbody

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