Funding for mental health-focused startups rises in 2020­TechCrunch, August 26, 2020
This is a summary of research group CB Insights’ recent analysis of venture capital funding trends for wellness-focused start-ups. While in the tough economic climate of the pandemic, sleep and fitness tech saw fewer deals and dollars in the first half of 2020 than they did at the same time last year, one sector is doing extremely well this year: mental health-focused start-ups.

Why walking is the ideal pandemic activityNational Geographic, August 25, 2020
Walking has always been about so much more than just walking. Walking soothes, inspires and sharpens the mind. The act of walking is also democratic and the perfect pandemic activity (socially distanced, yet not isolated). A short piece, but packed with interesting insights on why walking—a state of “defocused attention” and a “revolution in movement”—is good for us and the world…especially now.

How to take the perfect breath: why learning to breathe properly could change your lifeThe Guardian, August 26, 2020
In the last few years, there has been a huge surge of interest in “breathwork,” so much so that it might become “the next revolution in health and wellness.” COVID-19 has amplified it by triggering a renewed focus on breath and lung health. Breathwork can help improve our sleep, digestion, and immune and respiratory functions while reducing our blood pressure and anxiety.

Minimizing the social cost of COVID-19Project Syndicate, August 26, 2020
Andrew Sheng and Xiao Geng, top economic thinkers from Hong Kong, explain why East-Asian economies have outperformed countries like the US and the UK during the pandemic. In their opinion, regardless of ideology or politics, each society must develop institutional arrangements that constrain individual freedom (as the late Nobel laureate Ronald Coase argued with his “problem of social cost”) to counter the pandemic effectively. The key difference between success and failure at containing COVID comes down to attitudes: what role and responsibilities each society attributes to government, and to what extent it expects the community to act as a collective agent of the common good.

Massage therapy without the touchNew York Times, August 27, 2020
With COVID-related restrictions in place, massage therapists are reimagining treatments and therapies and reimagining the spa experience in ways they might never have once thought possible.

A Striking Stat: The Wellness Revenue Bump for Hotels
Hotels and resorts with major wellness operations generated 43% higher total revenues per available room (TRevPAR) in 2019 compared with their peers with no wellness offerings.

Source: Resources for Leisure Assets, The Wellness Real Estate Report, based on market data from 3,200 global hotels of all classes–August 2020

Read more about how minor wellness offerings are, conversely, associated with lower TRevPAR, how hot springs are rising in popularity, and how the pandemic is leading to increased demand for wellbeing services in general at destinations.

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