Number of yoga practitioners increases up to 30% in all metros in India

Majority of gym trainers suggest for combined sessions of yoga and gym for fitness

Students, stressed-out young professionals, business leaders and senior citizens have embraced yoga in large numbers as gymnasiums across metros have seen a boost in yoga practitioners willing to attain health and toning benefits of this ancient system of exercise and spiritual development.

“There has been a spurt in number of people that have taken up yoga by up to 30 percent, most of whom have been inspired by many celebrities and media attention that it has garnered,” noted a survey on ‘Yoga or Gym,’ conducted by the ASSOCHAM Social Development Foundation in 10 metros – Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi-NCR, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow and Mumbai.

The study also reveals that there has been an increase in the number of female participants by over 50 per cent ever since they began conducting yoga sessions at gymnasiums and in general the number of yoga practitioners has grown by about 25-30 percent over the past one year.

The survey also reveals that 25 percent of gym regulars have switched to yoga after first few sessions owing to increased flexibility, toning, strengthening and other such benefits of meditation and breathing exercises.

Besides, many even said that yoga has helped them fight everything from addiction and lower back pain to diabetes and aging, in addition to boosting overall well-being and stress relief.

Additional benefits such as improved digestion and concentration together with less of fatigue and tiredness has helped people in performing better at work are the prime motivators. Another reason why people prefer ‘yoga’ over ‘gym’ is yoga can be practiced at homes and even at offices.

In fact, most of the fitness trainers advised to combined regime yoga and gym sessions to get desired results of physical benefits and mental stimulation.

“Yoga has grown in India from an ancient spiritual practice to big business and premium lifestyle, considering that there are an estimated four crore yoga practitioners across the country spending about Rs 1,000 crore on designer yoga-wear, mats, towels, luxury retreats thereby promoting the fitness industry,” said Mr D.S. Rawat, secretary general of ASSOCHAM while releasing the findings of the ASSOCHAM survey.

“One of the key reasons for increased popularity of yoga is that of late it has developed as a panacea for the ailments of modern society — tech overload, disconnection and alienation, insomnia, stress and anxiety,” he added.

Yoga has also significant potential to encourage the inflow of both domestic and foreign travellers, especially in places like Rishikesh and others to become certified yoga instructors. The demand for certified yoga instructors is likely to grow in the wake of the growing popularity: reveals the ASSOCHAM survey-cum-analysis.

The report was published on the basis of interactions with 100 gym/fitness trainers and about 1,000 people sweating it out at the gymnasiums across the aforesaid cities. The study was conducted during the course of past two months in the wake of the International Day of Yoga celebrated globally on June 21.

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