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The 10th Annual Global Wellness Day Celebration Will Feature a 12-Hour Livestream

Global Wellness Day originated in Turkey, where it is sometimes celebrated with yoga on the beach.

With the theme to protect mental wellness for both children and adults, the 10th Global Wellness Day (GWD) celebration will take place Saturday, June 12. Founded in 2012 by Belgin Aksoy, GWD is a social project dedicated to living well and involves only complimentary activities. The purpose of the day is to bring global awareness to the importance of wellness and the role it plays in our everyday lives. Following last year’s 24-hour live broadcast in the midst of the pandemic, this year’s celebration will involve a 12-hour free livestream concert with safe, public events and complimentary educational wellness offerings around the world.

“In a world where one in 10 people live with a mental health disorder, necessary steps to protect our minds and souls must be taken,” says Aksoy. “Young people are more vulnerable than adults. According to a study, those aged 16 to 24 are the group most likely to report feeling lonely, especially those who are shy and introverted, and COVID-19 has only exacerbated the situation. Never has Global Wellness Day’s message of ‘One Day Can Change Your Whole Life’ been more meaningful.”

The GWD 7-Step Manifesto features simple steps that can be incorporated into your life to create real change. They include:

  1. Walk for an hour.
  2. Drink more water.
  3. Don’t use plastic bottles.
  4. Eat healthy foot.
  5. Do a good deed.
  6. Have a family dinner with your loved ones.
  7. Sleep at 10 pm.

This year, the livestream will reveal the value of being proactive about your physical and mental health with 10-minute segments on a range of topics, such as nutrition and exercise, breakthroughs in fighting pathogens, building compassionate communities, and more. Joining the celebration and the livestream are spiritual leader and an ambassador of peace, His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar; award-winning nature cinematographer Louis Schwartzberg; co-founder of Rancho La Puerta and the “Godmother of Wellness,” Deborah Szekely; headmaster of Shaolin Temple Europe, Master Shi Heng-Yi; New York Times best-selling author and wellness expert Kimberly Snyder; celebrity yogi and Yoga Revealed founder Andrew Sealy; chairman and CEO of Global Wellness Institute Susie Ellis, and more.

Aksoy and her son will also do a tandem paragliding flight with World Record Holder Wingsuit BASE Jumper Cengiz Kocak doing a flyby in his wingsuit between them. A number of other wellness professionals will also be showcased during the event on Global Wellness Day’s YouTube channel and Facebook page.

Aksoy’s dream of celebrating a day dedicated to wellness has inspired an international network of more than 130 volunteer GWD ambassadors, key supporters, and advisors to help make her dream a reality across the globe. The virtual 12-hour live events organized this year continue to be educational, non-commercial, and complimentary, as Aksoy’s motivating belief is that wellness is not a luxury but the inherent right of every individual.

GWD has grown from being celebrated in one country in 2012 to being celebrated in 170 countries in tens of thousands of locations from New Zealand to Hawaii and receiving the support of famous celebrities and government officials, such as Oprah Winfrey; actress Julie Andrews; and prince Harry and Meghan Markle; and more.

A host of international brands are also supporting the initiative, such as Vacayou, a wellness travel company, and Happy Ali, a global news portal focusing only on positivity messages. Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and Accor Hotels will also be lending their support and making GWD part of their corporate-wide wellness campaigns. In fact, Mandarin Oriental will be offering 24-hours of wellness via Instagram from across their hotels following the theme of “Inner Strength – Outer Strength.” Accor Hotels will be honor GWD by encouraging colleagues and guests to celebrate the day with a range of activities, such as meditation during meetings and morning power walks.

“I am a strong advocate of the understanding that living well is the simple necessity for every human being on the planet and that wellness is not a luxury but the inherent right of every individual,” says Aksoy, a cancer survivor. “I believe the pandemic has proven this to us all. Wellness is multidimensional; physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, and environmental. Our goal is for Global Wellness Day to help support individuals and societies to maintain a better lifestyle amid these unprecedented times. The past year has given us the opportunity to take a step back and really think about life and how we want to live it. Most importantly, although Global Wellness Day lasts for 24 hours, our message is intended to last a lifetime and the day Global Wellness Day gets accepted into the United Nations Official Calendar will be my celebration day, because it will be the day Global Wellness Day becomes a day celebrated by future generations.”

Here are just some of the Global Wellness Day celebrations planned around the world:

Barbados – A socially distant celebration will take place with a nature walk and continue with an hour of yoga, healthy cooking demonstrations, and free chair massages. The day will finish with a fun family dance exercise.

Brazil – This year the GWD team’s goal is to draw attention to the GWD 7 Step Manifesto with a number of activities such as healthy cooking classes, building organic vegetable gardens, a seminar on recycling, and collecting bottles, and doing good deeds by visiting the Solidarity Bazaar to donate clothes, shoes, and other essential items to those affected by the pandemic.

Canada – Lululemon, Eastwood Cycle, and Club Row Fitness, along with Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver, Toronto, and Whistler and many more will be organizing GWD celebrations in Canada including a virtual Healing Yoga session for employees and clients. Fairmont Jasper Lodge will be offering free boat and bike rentals for guests. Delta Prince Edward Marriott will be organizing online sun salutations, breathing exercises, and meditation workshops.

Costa Rica – The GWD Costa Rica team will be organizing outdoor events in line with COVID-19 rules and regulations throughout Costa Rica, with the support of the Costa Rican Tourism Board, the National Chamber of Tourism, Costa Rica Wellness Tourism Association, the National Chamber of Ecotourism, and other corporate companies.

France – Tigre Yoga Club, Bleu Blanc Coeur, Fusion Workout, Mentorshow, ALL (Accor Loyalty Program), L’Occitane, Celemence Peix Lavallee, Millésime Hotels, and many more are among the brands organizing GWD celebrations throughout France. Activities such as live face yoga, meditation, cardio workouts, and sleep and nutrition seminars will take place through an online celebration event.

Hungary – With the support of Ritz Carlton Hotel, Budapest, a series of online lectures and workshops will be taking place along with online fitness programs featuring stress relief yoga, full body Pilates, therapeutic exercises and techniques for home-office workspaces by well-known Hungarian experts.

India – In spite of the devastating impact of COVID on the country, online GWD celebrations with wellness experts and guest speakers featuring topics such as breathing workshops, sleep optimization programs, health and nutrition workshops, and much more will be organized and broadcast live through social media channels.

Italy – Davines Group with its brands [comfort zone] and Davines are organizing a special activity for children on Global Wellness Day with Susanna Esposito, professor of Pediatrics and drector of the Pediatric Clinic Pietro Barilla Children’s Hospital in Parma.

Japan – The GWD Japan team has organized various online activities to keep communities connected such as a 30-Day Morning Yoga Challenge, Wellness to Go, a Pass the Paddle Challenge with 100 GWD supporters, and more with the support of local brands, including Okinawa Tourist Company, Kurohime Wakan, Yakuin Kenkyusho, The Day Spa, and more.

Macau – In cooperation with Mr. J Sports and ManaVida, the GWD Macau team has organized a day filled with fun activities, such as Zumba, tabata, breakletics, kickboxing, morning and sunset stretching, as well as workshops on raw foods, kombucha, essential oil blending, and much more at the iconic Macau Tower Outdoor Plaza.

Mexico – Yoga expert Nessa Varez will lead an official GWD yoga session in Careyes, Mexixo.

New Zealand – GWD New Zealand has prepared both online and physical activities across the country, such as sunset yoga, partner acro yoga, house dance competition, group fitness classes, Zumba, functional fitness, Bootcamp, BoxHITT, online dancing classes, aqua exercises, and guided nature walks.

Puerto Rico – This year, the GWD team has planned a series of online and socially distanced activities including yoga under the stars, an aromatherapy workshop and aromatic essential oils for medicinal purposes, sound meditation, Latin music dance classes, and a 30-day meditation challenge.

South Korea – A day of fun and educational activities such as Gyro Kineses, stretching classes, yoga, Pilates, color therapy, and much more have been prepared to take place at various locations such as the InterContinental Hotel at Alpensia Resort, Park Roche Resort at Jeognsun, and Leaf Pilates & Tao Yoga.

Sweden – This year, GWD Sweden decided to focus on younger generations that have been isolated from school, friends, and sport activities for the last 16 months. An online celebration event will feature webinars on protecting our mental wellbeing, giving our bodies the right fuel, boosting our self-esteem, and exercise, as well as workshops on yoga and meditation.

United States – Kerstin Florian will be hosting hourly Guided Breathing Rituals and passing out gift bags to help guests at the Beverly Hills Hotel continue the practice at home. The towns of Bozeman and Whitefish—at opposite ends of the state of Montana—will use their network of farmers and foodbanks to hold a GWD event entitled “Healthy Foods Nourish Community” to support healthy foods and food security for needy Montanans. The Springs Resort and Spa in Pagosa Springs, CO, is inviting the community to a morning breathwork practice and guided meditation around the Mother Spring, the deepest geothermal spring in the world. At the Cross Road Farmer’s Market in Cleveland, OH, functional medicine doctor Tammy Gutierrez, M.D., will be teaching a class on how to “eat a rainbow.”  A selection of Marriott’s luxury brands as well as the Florida Spa Association will be hosting classes by Cause + Medic and Clean Republic on green health and safety protocols and solutions during COVID and beyond. At Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, Alo yoga ambassador Hiro Landazuri will lead a yoga session on the helipad.

Vietnam – Prior to GWD, the team will cooperate with Vietnamese celebrities and media to create awareness with “wellness dinners.” June 12th activities such as tai chi, yoga, beach clean-ups, dances, 30-minute nature walks, healthy cooking workshops, Zumba, and more are planned to take place at schools, open area parks, and partner venues.

To follow the events of June 12, look for #globalwellnessday.

About The Author
Heather-Mikesell-author-1

Heather, co-founder of Well Defined and the former editor-in-chief of American Spa, is an award-winning journalist and content strategist, skilled in writing, copyediting, and media relations. She is also a freelance writer and has contributed to Elite Traveler, Islands, Kiwi, Luxury Travel Advisor, Organic Spa, Porthole Cruise, Travel Agent, abcnews.com, jetsetter.com, outside.com, and wellandgood.com, in addition to various custom publications. She is frequently called upon to comment on various spa and wellness trends for various media outlets.