A focus on mindfulness, a new approach to fitness studios and a more holistic view of the body and mind are influencing current thinking on health
The rise of ‘supercharged wellbeing’ environments, mixing exercise with immersive experiences
Growing interest in mindfulness practices, immersive experiences and healthy routines are shaping a new generation of wellness destinations, offering consumers innovative and playful ways to take care of their bodies and minds. Spas, fitness centres and yoga studios are moving away from Scandinavian-inspired design trends, which focus on a clean, minimal aesthetic, and reinventing themselves as lifestyle hubs.
This new breed of immersive physical environment features audioreactive visual installations and 3D sound systems. Technology helps consumers feel calm and focused, and also boosts their performance.
As part of its Unlimited You campaign, launched for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, Nike introduced a three-day, fully immersive fitness experience in east London that challenged the typical concept of a gym. The space showcased a supercharged environment, complete with large-screen custom projections and a bespoke soundtrack composed by Hot Chip and performed by a live orchestra. An immersive light installation guided participants through their workout, generating different landscapes as they progressed.
New York-based Inscape is a 5,000-square-foot venue that offers immersive audio-guided group experiences for meditation and relaxation. Its two rooms feature surround-sound speakers and lighting, seamlessly integrated into the walls and ceilings. At Inscape there are no teachers and all classes are delivered via an app, downloadable from iTunes, played through the speaker system. The Inscape app comes with a diverse array of pre-recorded sessions and can be used at the Inscape studio as well as on the go.
Inspired by a holistic approach to wellbeing, each class at Londonbased ChromaYoga combines light therapy, soundscapes and bespoke natural scents to create a specially designed combination of sensory triggers. By merging ancient techniques and technological advancements, this studio practice offers consumers a fully immersive environment where the beneficial properties of red, yellow, blue, orange and pink lights are used to alleviate emotional and physical ailments. Each class is accompanied by a specially composed soundtrack that emulates the frequencies emitted by the brain in different states of consciousness, promoting relaxation and focus during exercise.
Our fast-paced lives are become increasingly dominated by rapidly changing technology trends, multitasking modes, and heavy media and digital consumption. Consequently, the way we take care of our bodies and minds is evolving as we look at how sensory technology can help.