Going to a retreat or a spa to get a bit of pampering can be the best thing you do for your body when it comes to anti-aging. Some people go on an intensive week or 14 day retreat in some exotic location, others visit a day spa once a month (or week) and some people do both !
However you get your pampering, your body will thank you for it. The great thing about spa treatments is that if you feel good afterward, the chances are that it’s doing your body good too. Most spa treatments aim to relieve stress which does untold damage to the body and the skin by setting off a powerful combination of hormones. So with that said, here are 3 therapies you can try next time you visit a spa or retreat.
This is probably the simplest form of therapy you can take and you don’t need a qualified therapist to help you either in most cases. It’s all about using water to relax the body and mind.
The word spa is often used to mean hydrotherapy these days. For instance, you can sit in a spa bath that has jets of water bubbling under the surface. Place aching muscles into the jet stream and they get a massage of sorts.
What’s more, the relaxing nature of such a treatment can help to ease stress. As already mentioned, stress triggers the release of stress fighting hormones. Whilst these hormones do a good job in intermittent doses, prolonged secretion can affect the body in an adverse way.
Hydrotherapy has two basic forms – hot water and cold water therapy. If a person has an specific problem they want to address they may use one form or they may use both in conjunction.
Benefits of Hot Water therapy
If you have ever being in a steam room or taken a hot bath, you will know how it makes you feel.
Hot water therapy will get the blood flowing round your body. This is a consequence of an increased heart rate. This is good for the heart. And getting blood to all the out of the way nooks and crannies of your body is good for them too. Blood delivers nutrients to the body so it helps to keep your extremities in good order.
Hot water also makes your skin sweat, which releases toxins and dirt in and on the skin. It can also relax muscles.
Hot water therapy is often good with essential oils diluted into it or with naturally occurring minerals. The oils and minerals can have added benefits for the body and spirit of the individual partaking of them.
Benefits of Cold Water Therapy
Cold water therapy generally has the opposite affect to hot water on the body. It will lower the heart rate. It will also lower blood pressure as you might expect.
The cold will also increase the metabolic rate as the body reacts to keeping the extremities and core functioning. This can help with weight loss but isn’t a solution to losing weight in it’s own right.
Combination Hot And Cold Hydrotherapy
A combination of the two methods is common in hydrotherapy to get the “best of both worlds”.
I visited a popular spa retreat in Baden Baden, Germany a few years ago.
This was a famous spot for the nobility of Europe going back hundreds of years. It allowed them to relax and recuperate after annexing territories, eating cake or whatever their busy lives threw up. It was initially created by the Romans.
Now it’s popular with everyday folk and is just like a huge swimming pool complex. You can alternate between spa baths, swimming pools, steam rooms, saunas, and ice baths. The town is wonderfully picturesque too, making for a lovely (read : stress busting) day out.
In Finland and many Baltic countries, people will take a sauna and then jump into a freezing cold lake.
Perhaps, you’ve done this at your local gym or spa by taking a sauna and then having a cold shower. It’s bracing to say the least !