Thursday, November 30, 2023

On Yoga Day: From Asana Rebels to AI Algorithms & Beyond

Yoga and meditation practices, traditionally considered conventional forms of treatment, have seamlessly integrated with our digital lives. On International Day of Yoga, let’s dive deep into the world of yoga and meditation apps. Let’s witness the incredible evolution they have undergone over the years, with some intriguing statistics. People find convenience and flexibility through their best app for yoga and meditation. 

Growth of Yoga & meditation apps over the years 

1. The global yoga market valued at about USD 80.49 billion in 2020 is predicted  to reach a whopping USD 185.87 billion by 2025. This is an impressive compound annual growth rate of 18.2% (Source: Research and Markets)

2. There is a surge in the popularity of yoga and meditation apps in recent years. There was a rise of 52% in app downloads in 2020 compared to the previous year (Source: Sensor Tower)

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3. According to a Yoga Journal survey, almost half (46%) of yoga practitioners have turned to yoga or meditation apps to support their practice. These apps offer a variety of benefits, including being able to practice at any time and place that suits them best (Source: Yoga Journal)

Lifestyle changes post-COVID and development of yoga apps

There was a rise in demand for fitness and related products during the lockdown in 2020. Keeping with this trend, the COVID-19 pandemic forced yoga studios to adapt, leading to a rise in virtual yoga classes. Most yoga studios offered online classes during the Covid period, which allowed practitioners to continue their practice remotely. This became the premise for the high acceptance of doing yoga and meditation via apps. 

Neetu Jain, a well-qualified yoga instructor from Delhi NCR in India, says that amidst the COVID pandemic, virtual yoga has emerged as the new trend, helping people stay fit and rejuvenated outside of traditional yoga spaces. “Thanks to apps, algorithms, and social media channels, even my own reach of yoga has tripled, going global with platforms like Zoom Yoga. People select their best app for yoga and meditation as per tier needs, and in turn these apps utilise AI algorithms to analyze preferences, cater to individual needs, and offer personalized recommendations,” she adds.

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It’s like having your own personal yoga guru at your fingertips. With virtual yoga apps, you have the freedom to practice anytime, anywhere, eliminating excuses.

best app for yoga and meditation

People were now accessing Yoga and meditation apps through their mobiles, laptops, and even smartwatches. In fact, wearable technology, such as smartwatches and fitness trackers, has found its place among yoga enthusiasts recently. A study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research revealed that 37% of yoga practitioners use wearable devices to track their yoga sessions and monitor their overall health and fitness progress (Source: Journal of Medical Internet Research). No wonder not just the best meditation apps for anxiety but also the best yoga app for weight loss will also be found on smartwatches and smartphones. 

Also Read: What are the Best Free Workout Apps in Every Category?

Yoga has proven effective in reducing stress levels. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology found that a staggering 85% of participants reported decreased stress levels after regularly practising yoga. It highlights the positive impact of yoga on mental well-being (Source: Journal of Clinical Psychology). This became an additional benefit of Yoga, apart from the fitness associated with it.

It is interesting to note that online yoga communities flourished post Covid as well. Yoga was ranked #14 in a list of top 20 worldwide fitness trends for 2020. However, this ranking is lower compared to its #7 ranking in 2019(ACSM Health and Fitness Journal, 2019)

What has changed with Yoga entering our devices?

From the humble beginnings of simple instructional guides to the power of AI-driven algorithms, personalised recommendations, and social features, Yoga related apps like the best yoga app for weight loss, the best meditation apps for anxiety, etc have not only transformed our life experience but also made it accessible to anyone with a smartphone. 

Social features and community building

Let’s rewind the clock a bit – gone are the days when they were simply videos of instructors showcasing poses. Today, these apps have transformed into vibrant virtual communities. You can join yoga challenges, share your progress, and connect with fellow yogis worldwide. Thanks to AI algorithms, personalized recommendations take your practice to new heights. These apps have truly made yoga accessible, and convenient, and infused it with a sense of excitement and community.

Personalised recommendations

Picture having a yoga buddy who understands your exact needs. Take IT Expert Malvika Singh’s experience, for instance. She recently moved to the US and had a desire to learn Yoga the Indian way. She shares, “Even here, we can use some Yoga apps from India. I wanted to learn it in the traditional Indian style, and through one of these apps, I’ve explored different styles and discovered classes that perfectly fit my specific requirements, all thanks to the best app for yoga and meditation, that I chose – its intelligent recommendations have transformed my life. It feels like having my very own virtual yoga guide!”

Indian apps foster the Yoga revolution globally 

Apps have revolutionised the way people connect with yoga, bringing studio-quality classes right to their fingertips. So much so that it’s a global movement now. Experts believe that technology will play a crucial role in expanding its reach and impact. This will facilitate collaboration between global giants like India and others.  Darshan Patel, an Indian-Mexican writes to us, “As an expert in SAP, I have dedicated myself to fostering the India-Mexico relationship for the past six years. Looking ahead to 2023 and beyond, innovative platforms like Yoga apps will further transcend geographical boundaries and become a global phenomenon. These partnerships via Yoga and Medication Apps, will not only strengthen technological bonds but also foster economic ties and more.” 

yoga and meditation apps

What’s next for Yoga apps?

Now, here’s where the magic happens – AI-driven algorithms! These ingenious algorithms have taken yoga and meditation apps to a whole new level. How? Because AI-driven algorithms have truly shaken up the yoga and meditation app scene. By analysing user data and feedback, these algorithms can understand your goals, fitness level, and preferences. Vinay Sharma, a senior data scientist from New Delhi, explains, “Picture this: The app analyses your strengths, weaknesses, and time constraints! It creates a tailor-made yoga routine just for you – like having a personal yoga assistant in your pocket. I am saying this not just as a data scientist but also as a fitness enthusiast.”

Here SAP expert Darshan Patel further envisions how life scenarios and work scenarios will further change via Yoga & Meditation Apps, “By integrating SAP solutions, we can empower yoga practitioners worldwide to seamlessly connect, access personalized guidance, and embark on transformative journeys of self-discovery and well-being.” He further elaborates that one such use case could be integrating yoga and meditation apps with corporate HR portals. This will allow employees to integrate data from their wearable devices securely while maintaining anonymity. This would enable HR departments to track the health and wellness status of employees, from CEOs to shop floor workers. A healthy workforce that can also control stress via the best meditation apps for anxiety can lead to improved performance and a positive work environment. “Together, we can shape a future where technology and yoga intersect to empower individuals and organizations on their wellness journeys,” he ends.

The final thoughts come from Ilesh Ghevariya, Founder of French Crown, a global fast fashion brand. Ilesh goes a step further to explain how the economy is already seeing a revolution thanks to the revolution named the best app for yoga and meditation! He informs, “Amidst my hectic life, Yoga Apps keep me fit by not only teaching Asanas but also reminding me of missed or delayed classes. These apps have also popularised Yoga Fashion, expanding athleisure wear beyond studios and boosting the economy. In 2023, expect exciting advancements where wearable devices provide real-time feedback, virtual reality offers immersive journeys, and AI algorithms refine personalized recommendations for tailored yoga practices.”

And we can surely do nothing but agree that AI and Yoga Tech will deepen our connection to yoga, making it more accessible, engaging, and transformative than ever before.

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Mahima Sharma
Mahima Sharma
A regular columnist at TechThirsty and other reputed webzines, Mahima is a Senior Journalist based in Delhi NCR in TV, Print & Online Journalism since 2005. In her span of work she has been associated with CNN-News18, ANI - Asian News International (A collaboration with Reuters), Hindustan Times and other top media houses. In March 2022, she was selected as an Entrepreneurship Education Mentor at Women Will - An Entrepreneurship Program by Google in Collaboration with SHEROES. She has several awards and national recognitions to her name.

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