Two of the most ancient practices in the world, yoga, and meditation, have grown rapidly in the US in recent years. They are now officially the two most popular alternative health approaches in the US. Around 35 million adults use these practices each year.
Two new reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention highlighted the changes in the use of yoga, meditation, and chiropractors in the US between 2012 and 2017.
The report found that in 2017 around 14.3% of US adults had done yoga in the last year and 14.2% had practiced meditation. Comparatively, in 2012 only 9% were practicing yoga and a mere 4% were meditating.
It’s not just adults either. Kids are now practicing meditation and yoga at greater numbers as well. In 2012, fewer than half a percent of kids meditated. That number is now at 5%. For yoga, less than 3% of kids practiced in 2012 while that number is now at 8%.
A big reason these numbers saw a high jump was because of availability. There has been a boom in yoga studios, classes, apps, online videos. However, yoga and meditation are now also being recommended by health professionals.
Americans struggling with mental health issues such as anxiety, depression or physical issues like chronic pain are seeking alternative therapies that don’t involve traditional pharmaceuticals. Doctors are finding that yoga and medication can be effective in treating a wide variety of health conditions without side effects.
Yoga helps with a wide variety of conditions. It’s particularly good at improving lower back pain and reducing inflammation. Meditation is one of the best tools we have for training our minds.
People are beginning to experience yoga and meditation at younger ages, meaning the number of practicing adults will only go up as the year’s progress. Studios now offer classes tailored at kids. Schools are even now offering yoga and meditation sessions to students with promising results.
Overall, it doesn’t seem like yoga and meditation are going anywhere, nor should they.