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Seven New Trends in Meeting Wellness Design

By: Kristina Tarantino, CMP and The Health & Wellness Forum | May 14, 2019

trendsHealthy Meeting trends are everywhere. There are so many options now with many new trends appearing daily, but which ones do you need to incorporate? Which ones are best for you and your attendees as far as cost, participation and feasibility? Learn the newest health and wellness trends and what you need to know. This information can help you decide what will keep your attendees coming back. Not sure where to start or how to take your meeting to the next level? Here are some questions to ask yourself and your organization to make an impact at your next meeting.

There are some strategies you can implement to ensure you are on the cutting edge of meeting wellness and to energize your attendees. Here are seven new trends:

  1. Goat & Puppy Yoga
    This trend takes the No. 1 spot for the fact that how can this not be fun – a yoga class where you share your mat with either adoptable dogs, adorable puppies or goats. Animal lovers and fellow yogis will find serenity, peace and fun. This is not an everyday occurrence which makes it perfect to bring to a meeting experience. Why is this a good thing? This exercise incorporates animal therapy where attendees exercise and meditate in the presence of goats or puppies. The animals have free rein to interact with you in your practice which releases a feel-good hormone and lowers blood pressure. Think of it like this – race horses and goats have been befriending each other for centuries. For whatever reason, the goats seem to have a great calming effect on race horses, who are often extremely temperamental. This trend is worth the try and easy to find experienced yogis who can deliver this experience.

  2. Aromatherapy in Meeting Space
    Just about every major hotel brand has been doing this in their hotel lobbies for years. They have zeroed in on the powerful psychological benefits of scent. This trend has finally trickled into the meeting landscape. The addictive element here is fragrance and mood-lifting essential oils. Meeting planners and designers are catching onto the idea that aromatherapy can have a measurable impact on attendees. Smell is linked to well-being, emotion and memory, and it can make the atmosphere at the meeting feel more inviting. The benefits don’t end there because scents that leave people with positive associations can only benefit overall meeting satisfaction and learning. There are many new companies now that specialize in creating a scent environment for events and meetings. This trend is one that is a safe bet.

  3. Wellness and Walking Challenges
    This activity is one of the easiest and most accessible to all attendees and simple to incorporate with some planning and coordination. A walking challenge is not only fun, but creates some competition while encouraging a healthy activity. Many conferences tie the challenge in to a sponsorship and offer great prizes which creates buzz and excitement. It’s fun to watch the leader board showing who is leading the challenge and by how many steps.

  4. Healthy and Mindful Drinks
    Another common trend is “mindful drinking.” Though it sounds trendy, like mindful eating and mindful breathing, mindful drinking has long been practiced by (nonmonastic) Buddhists, they say. The idea is to take time to smell, taste and fully experience a cocktail, with the goal of staying present and analyzing the physical and psychological effects of drinking. The result is a slower more enjoyable approach to savor time with colleagues and friends, and allows you to still feel great the next day. Many meetings and conferences are utilizing healthy mixologists and creating clean drinks with cucumber, lemon, mint and basil for a fresh-tasting theme drink.

  5. Onsite Fitness
    This trend is almost commonplace by now. Most conferences offer wellness activities which includes onsite fitness and/or attendees are utilizing the upgraded hotel gym or fitness center. The trend we are seeing most are hotels are leveling up the hotel gym. If your conference hotel is not accommodating in that area, the conference itself can offer a morning fitness class such as boot camp, yoga, barre or an organized run at the hotel.

  6. Dedicated Conference Page
    Some conferences are dedicating an entire website page to the health and wellness options that will be available onsite at the conference. These pages highlight all the wellness-focused activities, information and enrollment links. This is a great trend as it prepares the attendees in advance, notifies them of what to pack, allows accurate counts for the planner and allows for more targeted pre-event communication.

  7. In-Room Workouts and Apps
    We are seeing new virtual workouts everywhere. There are so many choices and more coming to the market every day. Most fitness formats have some form of virtual sessions that you can subscribe to making it easy to take your workout anywhere you go. One example is LiveKick which offers fitness and yoga over live video with a private coach from your phone at a mutually scheduled time. Some hotels already have this service in-room. Having these options available to your attendees can make it easier for you to add meeting wellness.

These are just some of the emerging wellness trends we are seeing in the meetings industry. Trying a new trend and asking for feedback is the best way to see what the majority of your group enjoys and what works for your meeting or event. Adopting and testing some of these trends can be the key to a perfectly healthy meeting.

About the Author: You can follow Kristina Tarantino, CMP, and The Health & Wellness Forum featuring the HealthyNetwork Live! on LinkedIn at or or Twitter @katarantino for more tips on health and wellness meeting strategies. Visit for great ideas, inspiration and tools to incorporate wellness into your next meeting. Join her at the HealthyNetwork Live! May 31-June 1 at Lake Lawn Resort in Delevan, Wis.



Kristina Tarantino, CMP and The Health & Wellness Forum and The Health & Wellness Forum

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