Yoga's Hot Stretch Has Been Great for Mindful Investors

Henry Truc  |

Don't be alarmed if you notice your coworkers laying around and stretching with their eyes closed in the office more than normal today. Given that today's International Day of Yoga, you may actually consider joining them to get your locust pose on. If you've never heard of International Day of Yoga, you're probably not the only one since the day wasn't officially launched until just last year, thanks to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). But that's also indicative of just how popular the yoga movement has become in recent years. In fact, depending on who you ask, the yoga industry is estimated to be as large as $80 billion worldwide ($30 billion in the US) with over 300 million practitioners globally.

But even for consumers that don't like doing yoga, you don't have to actually practice it to adopt the lifestyle. Look no further than the exploding athleisure market and the intensely popular Lululemon (LULU), whose iconic yoga pants are now an everyday staple for most Americans. The popularity growth of yoga apparel has even outpaced the discipline itself in recent years, with major apparel companies like Nike (NKE), Under Armour (UA), Gap (GAP), and many others aggressively targeting the growth market.

Athletic apparel companies aren't the only ones benefiting from this industry's boom, either. In addition to the rise in yoga classes and accessories sales, there is no shortage of startups in the space. Several yoga-centric services have launched as well to hop on the trend. There are companies like YogaTrail, which is kind of like a Yelp (YELP) for yogis, or NomadYOGI, which is a social network for the yoga community. There's also a bunch of yoga apps like Down Dog or Yoga Buddy that enable people to do "yoga anywhere" in one form or another, and even subscription box services like BuddhiBox.

While yoga is a great way for people to achieve a healthier physical, mental and even spiritual lifestyle, it's also attracting a very highly desirable demographic of consumers. As the infographic below from Visual.ly shows, the yoga lifestyle attracts aspirational consumers that have considerable discretionary income, and are willing to spend it. Yoga isn't just for yogis anymore, and this is great for businesses and investors alike.

By milkwhale on Visually.

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