It’s an exciting time for wellness. The recent influx of technology and a shifting healthcare landscape have contributed to a rapidly changing wellness industry. We receive lots of questions from our clients and readers about various wellness topics and industry trends, as well as requests for our thoughts and recommendations on particular mobile apps and wellness activities. We are kicking off a new blog series so that we can more publically share our responses to these questions.
Every few weeks we are going to answer a few of your questions.
Today, Nick Patel, President of Wellable, is kicking things off…
What’s your favorite wellness app?
I probably have about 40 wellness apps on my smartphone that I’m testing for future Wellable integrations. My favorite is RunKeeper. I love running and in Boston we have amazing running paths along the Charles Rivers. My goal is to qualify for the Boston Marathon but I still have a long way to go! I also play basketball in the mornings before work. I use Foursquare to check-in to the gym and earn Wellable points – got to get my Wellable points!
What do you think is the biggest obstacle for an employer to start a wellness program?
Many employers believe that starting a wellness program is extremely time consuming and expensive. This may have been true in the past, but with the emergence of some really great wellness technology solutions, this is no longer the case. Employers are pleasantly surprised when they realize the affordability of a wellness technology program. Some employers want to manage a wellness program internally, but for those who don’t have the resources (and most don’t), there are wellness solutions that require little to no employer resource drain. We’re focused on educating the market on the benefits of wellness technology and helping dispel the myth that wellness is expensive and resource draining.
What wellness trends are you most excited about?
We’re really excited about Apple’s recent entry into wellness. Apple’s presence in the space validates Wellable’s approach to market. Our team wrote an interesting blog post on this topic two weeks ago. Apple will help educate consumers on the benefits of wellness, and these same consumers are the end users of employer sponsored wellness programs like Wellable.
A second trend we’re really excited about is smartphone wellness optimization. Over the last year, we’ve seen smartphone manufacturers optimizing their hardware for wellness – this is a huge win for the industry. For example, because of updated processors, the Moves app is more battery-efficient for tracking a user’s activity. While wearable devices like Fitbit are great tools, they can be too expensive for many employers to purchase. With improved technology, the smartphone is becoming as good at tracking wellness activity as many wearable devices. Improved smartphone wellness is a major win for employers. Since most employees already have as smartphone, they can take advantage of great wellness features without having to purchase a pedometer or wearable device.