Yoga likely to get the status of sports to woo youth

New Delhi:  Yoga asanas may soon get the status of sports to promote it and pave the way for its possible inclusion in Olympic games, according to the AYUSH ministry.

The Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy, abbreviated as AYUSH, is a governmental body in India purposed with developing, education and research in the field of alternative medicine.

The National Board for Promotion and Development of Yoga and Naturopathy has recommended recognising yoga asana as a sport so that more youths adopt it, a government official said.

“There is a need to promote Yoga as a sport so that it can be an added attraction for the youth. So maybe by the time we have the Olympics in 2036 or 2040, yoga asanas may find a place in the mega event, the officials from the AYUSH ministry said.

Speaking at the ‘6th India Wellness Conclave 2019 – Nurturing the Wellness Industry for a Healthier and Happier India’, organised by FICCI on Wednesday, a senior official from the AYUSH ministry said that with India targeting to become a USD 5 trillion economy by 2024, the contribution of the wellness industry is poised to be USD 50 billion at current growth rate.

“However, we should aim for a faster growth to make it USD 100 billion industry and centre of new India growth story,” he said.

The AYUSH ministry has also stressed that while there were 85 lakh people who participated on the International Day of Yoga in 2016, it rose to 2.8 crore in 2017, 9.5 crore in 2018 and 13 crore this year according to provisional figures.

According to the ministry, these are people who follow the yoga protocol on their own without compulsion. It’s not about yoga. It’s about wellness, about maintaining one’s own health, taking care of self and about a happier India.

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