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The fine art of holistic health
Interviewer | Urmi Chanda-Vaz

India’s leading holistic health guru Mickey Mehta talks to Spa Mantra about the first and only equipment-free fitness module

He is popularly known as India’s first holistic wellness guru, and it’s not hard to see why. His deep and enduring commitment to wellness, his humble and calm demeanor, and his vision are material for inspiration. He started his career in this arena many years ago, and has steadily built a community of believers and followers, who swear by his techniques. He goes against the grain of conventional fitness paradigms that use equipment, and instead combines several techniques for the desired result. He picks the best from forms like Yoga, Pranayaam, Calisthenics, Gymnastics, Swimming, etc. to create programs that help a person achieve harmony at not just the physical level, but also on the mental and spiritual fronts. In this exclusive interview with Spa Mantra, we discover more about the man and his mission.
Tell us something about your
I began my professional journey in
1983. I got into this field purely out of
passion and I think I was born to be in
this profession of wellness coaching.
Even in school, I took part in physical
training classes, swimming, cycling and
my fundamental training and inclination
towards this field began from there.
Subsequently, my courses in Nutrition
and Dietetics at the Bombay College
of Health and Nutrition, at the Indian
Institute of Nature Cure and Drugless
Therapies, the influence of Dr Vijaya
Venkat and the inspiration I gained from
the philosophies of Maharshi Mahesh
Yogi and Dr Deepak Chopra gave me
the perfect orientation to venture out
to start on my own. Later, I delved
into Yoga, swimming, calisthenics,
meditation, prayers and natural
When you embarked upon
this unique career more than
two decades ago, the fitness
scenario in India was almost
zilch. What inspired you to take
this ‘bold’ step? How did the
brand Mickey Mehta come into
Compassion for the human society
– for transforming people’s life for
the better and my dream to create a
functional exercise platform for people
to enjoy their workouts and most
importantly, to heal the world and free
people from ailments and diseases
through productive physical exercises,
food, Yoga, meditation and Pranayam
marked my foray into the world of
wellness and wellbeing. To me, being
healthy is paramount with an emphasis
on the well being of the entire body and
mind. Holistic health is my passion and
business, and is fundamental to one’s
growth, success and achievement in
life. I have interwoven and connected
the essences of Ayurveda, Yoga, Zen
and Tao to heal and transform lives and
lifestyles for the better.
I began my chain of wellness centres
in 2004. I have branches at different
locations in the city (Mumbai) like
Babulnath, Tardeo, Dadar TT, Chembur,
Bandra (West), Malad (West), and a
branch in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. I also
organize swimming batches in Acres
Club in Chembur and I plan to put up
more centers.
Over the years, you have
played many inspirational
roles – martial arts master,
masseuse, personal fitness
trainer, swimming coach,
mentor, motivational speaker,
etc. Which one do you cherish
the most?
Every role is as important as the other.
I cherish being a wellness coach and
a mentor to many. It’s very gratifying to
see a smile on everyone’s face. That
is my mission. I want to continue to
heal the world with love, kind words
and action and help as many people as
possible to be healthy and transformed.
What role did you play as the
fitness guide to Miss India
I conducted training sessions with
emphasis on lots of breathing to
de-stress them from their tensions,
worries, etc and to boost them with
energy, confidence and creativity
to take them to a liberated state of
consciousness. All my training sessions
include Yoga, meditation, Pranayam,
calisthenics and agility drills.
For me, this whole exercise was a
body-mind-soul-connect. My areas of
focus were building their self esteem,
constructive attitude, behavior, thoughts
and positive visualization. In addition
to a perfect body, perfection must also
be seen in their performances, poise,
stamina and mental strength.
Where do calisthenics come in,
along with Yoga?
The word Calisthenics is derived from
the Greek words, “kallo” (beauty)and “thenos” (strength). Like Yoga,
these are dynamic exercises using
one’s own body weight along with
props like medicine balls, Swiss balls,
resistance tubes, light dumbbells, etc.
for better flexibility and body strength.
These exercises consist of a variety of
movements and can be done without
equipments. Even Yoga, dancing and
light to moderate gymnastics form
part of calisthenics. Benefits include
increased strength, agility, coordination,
balance and flexibility, helps burn fat
and is effective for all age groups.
What is equipment-free fitness
all about?
I think I have revolutionized the concept
of ‘equipment-free gyms’ by offering
a range of functional exercises with
Prop Training. The exercises include
food products, etc., which have become
a global force in pushing up the health
and medical market.
What do you think about the
spa industry and its role in
The new era has seen a keen
interest among people in adopting a
holistic approach in the way we treat
ourselves. A new wellness movement
is born! Recognizing this need, the
spa industry has now become a
global wellness market. With the
consumer force driving its growth,
new concepts in spas are emerging
offering a plethora of benefits that
improve health, enhance the quality
of life and to optimize one’s wellness
and wellbeing. I fully and completely
endorse this concept that can provide
personal health and wellness lifestyle
options. It is a place for healing, for
relaxation and rejuvenation and has
become an integral part of the wellness
calisthenics, Yoga, high intensity
Yoga, boot camps, challenging cardio
workouts, agility drills and stretch
classes. The props used include Swiss
balls, Medicine balls, Resistance tubes,
Parallel Bars, etc. These are creative,
imaginative and have recreational value
as well. They promote wellness and
well being and help alleviate boredom
of doing the same gym routines.
How and why are Mickey
Mehta’s programs holistic?
They are holistic because we offer
wellness in totality and not mere
fitness. We strive to achieve lifestyle
correction and believe in empowering
all our members to break free from
being slaves to equipments for fitness
and our workouts include recreational
and functional exercises. Our focus
is on enhancing strength, stamina
and endurance. All my centers follow
the concept of ‘equipment free gyms.
Equipment-free training is freedom
from getting dependent on machines. It
is more about good health rather than
just physical fitness. I am promoting
a new physical culture and physical
refinement and provide not only
physical but also mental and spiritual
How much has the fitness
industry evolved over the years
in India?
This business or industry is here
to stay and is not a fad anymore. It
had tremendous potential to move
upwards with the increasing demand
for healthcare. This industry also gets
a great push from sports personalities,
athletes, celebrities, businessmen,
corporate, schools, educational
institutions, women, men, children,
etc. This can also be attributed to
the growing awareness of alternative
health and fitness approaches and
has become a revolution with various
products like beauty and skin care,
anti-aging, weight loss products, health

Hobbies/interests: Reading, watching
movies, spending quality time with my
inner circle of family and friends and
my work team and wellness education
via the net.
Favourite cuisine/ beverage: Simple
food with tasty flavors and fragrances
-for soulful nourishment.
Favourite form of fitness: I do not
follow any strict fitness schedule or
regime. I incorporate a lot of stretching,
Yoga postures and meditation along
with my breathing exercises to
stimulate my entire body. My exercise
regime is not the aggressive kind of
workouts. My mantra is to eat simple,
exercise well, rest well, be graceful and
have the right attitude towards life.
Your inspiration: Deepak Chopra is my
If you weren’t a fitness guru, you’d be?
Probably could have been a lawyer or
an actor/ a professor of philosophy, so
on and so forth..




Yoga session

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