Wellness and Health at Sea: SPA Ahoy

By Marina Aagaard, MFE. Photos: Lars Horn, Baghuset.

This blog is about fitness and wellness at home and on the move, it is about everything, which betters the health and performance of me … and you.
It is not only about high-intensity training, buzz word of today, but also all the other actions, remedies and edibles, that make a difference:
Increase your energy and stamina and improve physical and mental recovery, so a.o. you keep illness at bay and avoid being away sick from duties or workouts.

Two things that work are SPA baths (popular since ancient times), which speed up recovery, and holidays, periods away from the everyday to undwind physically and mentally. And those two can be combined …

Stena Saga Pure Nordic Spa Wellness at sea Photo:  Lars Horn / Baghuset

From time to time for business or pleasure I sail north from Frederikshavn (north of Jutland, Denmark) to various destinations in Norway and Sweden. On the trip of this week – first trip of 2014 – I discover, that on board the ferry, Stena Saga, which carries me to a small weekend skiing trip, there is a spa.

And a 750 sqm. real spa, Pure Nordic Spa, it is. Not what I had expected on board a ferry. A big spa (cruise ship size at least) and not only big, but with both hot (sauna and steamroom) and temperate baths and a cold bath. The latter is a must – even if not all spa’s have one – for hot-cold baths, which boost immune system, skin and energy level.

Hot-cold bath e.g.: 10-15 min. sauna followed by 1-2 min. cold bath. Repeat 2-4  times. This gets the blood flow going. This is healthy, if you are healthy. Sick? Check with your doctor for special precautions.

Stena Saga Pure Nordic Spa Hot tub Photo:  Lars Horn / Baghuset

Another one of my favourites is on board, too. An outdoor hot tub. Hot water and a bubbly massage is nice in itself. An extra dimension: To lie in the hot water outside in the fresh air, which provides more oxygen for your brain and muscles … and an extra special experience in these months with temperatures below 0 degr. C … even if the walk to the tub with bare feet in the snow was rather cold (photo: Me pleased as a peach surrounded by water and men).

Stena Saga Pure Nordic Spa bath Photo:  Lars Horn / Baghuset

I also got a different and fun spa experience: In the temperate bath, where you can spend quite a long time effortlessly, you could clearly feel the movement of the ship, which made waves in the water. A unique sensation (photo: Me and others grinning; life is good today).

As a spa finale even more relaxation is recommended. After spa baths and treatments, you normally rest for about ½ hour, or longer, in a comfy chair in a room with a moderate temperature).
This ensures a gradual return to normal temperature and is very relaxing. And a view of the sea and sky is really very, very calming.

Stena Saga  Dato: 30.01.14 Foto:  Lars Horn / Baghuset

I can really recommend dipping into the water, when at sea, for a different mini-holiday. Ferry trips (or mini-cruises) are like ‘hotel stays afloat’, and reasonably priced (check for offers). Spa entrance is about half price of that ashore.

This was my first ‘dip’ into a spa on a ferry, but not the last …

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