The most innovative wellness companies of 2020

This year’s honorees include Calm, Fridababy, Theragun, Dame Products, and Orangetheory Fitness.

The most innovative wellness companies of 2020

From optimizing your workout to improving your sleep, the top companies in wellness this year are finding novel ways to keep you healthy. Whoop’s fitness tracker allows any user to access the kinds of data and insights that have previously only been available to athletes, while Orangetheory Fitness and F45 are cultivating loyal followings for their in-studio classes. Theragun has developed a fresh way to ease sore muscles, Ayana has advanced mental health services to new populations, and Calm has tapped Matthew McConaughey to read you to sleep. And Fridababy and Dame are proving the transformative power of thoughtful, well-designed products.


1. Whoop

For letting the masses monitor their well-being like elite athletes

Whoop’s fitness tracker was initially developed for elite athletes, to help monitor stats such as workout intensity, recovery time, and sleep performance. Now, it’s going mainstream. Part of its interesting business plan: The tracker itself is free, but users pay $30 a month for a subscription to its software services.

Read more about why Whoop is one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies of 2020.


2. Calm

For stretching the potential of a meditation app

Two new users downloaded the Calm app every second in 2019. In addition to meditation courses, the app also offers wildly popular Sleep Stories—soothing and nonsensical soliloquies designed for bedtime, and read by celebrities including Matthew McConaughey, Stephen Fry, and Leona Lewis—and self-improvement courses. The app now boasts more than 2 million paid subscribers, who pay $70 a year for unlimited access.

Read more about why Calm is one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies of 2020.


3. Fridababy

For managing the ickier moments of giving birth with such items as postpartum underwear

The company that revolutionized the ickier moments of childcare now services an equally important sector: the millions of women going through childbirth. The company launched FridaMom, a design-forward wellness line that includes a wide range of hospital-stay and post-delivery products: disposable delivery and nursing gowns, a squirt bottle to clean “down there,” a pack of cooling liners to reduce swelling, and high-waisted mesh underwear designed for both C-section and vaginal deliveries, among other necessities.

4. Theragun

For upgrading its percussive therapy tool to put 60 pounds of force to sore muscles


This revolutionary and wildly popular mechanical massage tool puts an industrial-grade motor in the palm of your hands—for $599. Theragun is a cordless handheld device that provides deep-tissue myofascial release. Fans (including Maroon 5’s Adam Levine, model Ashley Graham, and NBA player Kyrie Irving) swear it can do what old Brookstone gadgets never could: treat muscle and joint pain, relieve tension, flush out lactic acids, and loosen tight knots.

5. Carrot

For helping smokers and vapers pivot out of addiction

This smoking cessation program includes an FDA-cleared personalized carbon monoxide breath sensor (that quantifies smoking behavior), a mobile app, behavioral counseling, pharmacotherapy, community support, and motivational lessons. Its Pivot program provides a clear road map to help people quit smoking—beginning with the assumption that participants might not even want to quit.


6. Orangetheory Fitness

For enhancing its workout measurement tools

The popular fitness chain, known for blending high-intensity workouts with scientific data and fitness tracking, expanded its core technologies. Notably, it rolled out compatibility with Apple Watches (and a subsequent rewards program) to improve both customer and coach experiences.

7. Delos

For adapting its system for improving buildings’ air, light, and water to residences


Delos’s subsidiary, the International Well Building Institute, enables organizations to enhance their spaces and improve human well-being at scale by applying the Well Building Standard (Well), the world’s leading health-focused building standard. At the start of 2019, Delos debuted DARWIN Home Wellness Intelligence, which helps owners, developers, and tenants streamline and scale the health and wellness strategies found in Well across multiple spaces in its real estate portfolios, including homes.

8. Ayana

For connecting people in marginalized communities with therapists who can relate

Of the 100,000-plus therapists in the U.S., 86% are white. To help marginalized communities connect with therapists they can relate to, Ayana‘s telemedicine therapy services algorithmically match users with licensed therapists by gender, orientation, ethnicity, culture, class, language, and values.


9. F45

For fostering community in its high-intensity functional workouts

In just a few years, this Aussie sensation amassed more than 1,750 fitness studios worldwide, beating out Orangetheory to become the fastest-growing fitness franchise. The secret to its success? A mixture of novelty, community, and millennial-friendly experiences. Its unorthodox structure pushes connections and community engagement. It also has its own festivals that pit gyms against each other.

10. Dame Products

For designing sex toys with the input of real women


Female-led sex-toy company Dame Products has long been leading the space in innovation. In 2019, it launched two accessory products—Pillo, an assistive pillow, and personal lubricant in a slip-resistant bottle—with input from Dame Labs, a community of “real women” product testers.

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