• Nicole Jane Shaw

Wellness Retreats: have a positive impact

Study shows week long retreat experiences can lead to substantial improvements in multiple dimensions of health and well-being. If you are wanting to make a significant change in your lifestyle, a wellness retreat may be the ticket to living the life you imagine for yourself.



The concept of wellness is still evolving, enhanced health, and proactive approaches to health and well-being are now becoming the "norm" for vacation goers. Consistent with the World Health Organization’s definition of “health” the 2013 Global Wellness Tourism Economy report defines wellness as a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being.* The Global Wellness Institute has numbers from 2015 stating facts that the global wellness industry is a $3.7 trillion market with Wellness Tourism at 563 billion dollars. Global wellness tourism revenues grew from $494.1 billion in 2013 to $563.2 billion in 2015 – or 14%. A growth rate more than twice as fast as overall tourism expenditures (6.9%).




Global wellness tourism is here now and the numbers are telling me that we are now possibly becoming conscious as a culture about health and lifestyle.

I get a sense of deep responsibility when I see these numbers. I am very much part of the wellness world, my daily life exists of cultivating my personal wellness practices, teaching yoga, meditation, annual yoga retreats and basically trying to make healthy life choices. I feel fortunate that at different stages of my life I allowed myself to trust my own soul seeking, healing adventure, journeying to foreign lands to learn disciplines from the traditional teachings of yoga and meditation. These learning adventures had a healing focus. I yearned for it, my body and mind needed a reset. I wanted to change my ways, and live a life with less stress and pressure. In those days I was gone for one month to six months depending on the learning.



The wellness retreat study from 2017 found that in one week of having a retreat experience including

educational, therapeutic, and leisure activities and an organic, mostly plant-based diet. Significant improvement of each individual in all measured areas can lead to substantial improvements in multiple dimensions of health and well-being that are maintained for 6 weeks. Meaning the results continue after the retreat. The individuals were measured in a variety of factors including assessment of physiologic functioning, anthropometry, happiness, depression, anxiety, mood, sleep, health symptoms, toxic load, neurocognitive function, socioeconomic status, social connectivity, and perceived self-efficacy.



The Past, Present and Future of Wellness Retreats


Twenty years ago, the idea of a retreat for me was staying in a hut, a small bed, with a mosquito net, and a shared community tap for running water to wash yourself and to cook from. These days I am happy to say the accommodations have slightly improved depending on where you land, now you are greeted by peaceful retreat managers, you stay in luxury accommodations and the wellness resources is in abundance. Offerings of therapeutic massage, acupuncture, personal counseling, nutrition coaches, yoga, meditation and fitness experts are all available for the well being of the visitors stay. Times are changing and I have a feeling for the better.


Consistent with the World Health Organization’s definition of “health,” the 2013 Global Wellness Tourism Economy report defines wellness as a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being.


It goes beyond mere freedom from disease or infirmity and emphasizes the proactive maintenance and improvement of health and well-being.

It is pretty clear what we are cultivating in the wellness industry, we are providing a service of care for all who want to take their life back into their own hands. We are providing a space where people can feel supported, reset, let go of stress and accumulated tension in the body, mind and heart. All is ready and prepared for you, all you have to do is show up. I love this!

At the heart of change is grace, self-inquiry and love.

Nicole's teaching at its core is living a life of compassion. Freedom in movement.

Wellness is acceptance, wellness is a gentle surrender to living reality. When we can surrender we can see with clarity the beauty in the opposites of existence.

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Nicole Jane Shaw Wellness Group 2018

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