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More Americans are practicing yoga and meditation, research has found.
Based on 2017 data, 14.3% of American adults said that they had practiced yoga in the past year, while 14.2% had meditated. These findings show that there was a drastic change from 2012, when only 9.5% did yoga and only 4.1% did meditation.
The same trend is apparent among American children aged four to 17. Yoga practice in that age group increased from 3.1% in 2012 to 8.4% in 2017. For meditation, the numbers jumped from 0.6% to 5.4% during the five-year period.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) gathered the data using the results of the National Health Interview Survey from 2012 to 2017. The survey mainly determined the number of people who practiced yoga and meditation in the United States.
In the survey, yoga was described as a practice involving meditation, breathing exercises, and physical postures. People do it to relax and achieve a mental, physical, and spiritual balance. On the other hand, meditation was defined as a type of mental exercise that can boost mindfulness and spiritual awareness.
Richard Nahin, one of the researchers, speculated that people are turning to yoga and meditation because they are starting to recognize the medical benefits of these practices. The benefits include relieving pain in certain body parts, such as the lower back and neck, and alleviating stress.
Furthermore, the implementation of wellness programs at companies and schools, along with the development of yoga and meditation apps, is already at play.