SPA DOCTOR: Rebalancing in a mystical Alpine retreat
My stress levels were under control, or so I thought.
But I’ve recently been diagnosed with stress axis dysfunction, a condition where the pressure of day-to-day life disrupts the balance of hormones.
It involves the hypothalamus (part of the brain that regulates sleep and emotions), the pituitary gland and the adrenal glands (both involved in hormone production).
When they work together, they regulate stress response, mood and energy levels. When they don’t, it can lead to chronic stress.
Bad Ragaz is a plush medical spa in the Swiss Alps that harnesses nearby thermal mineral waters.
There’s a choice of five-star hotels, a medical centre, cosmetic surgery facility and two spas.
The Haki Reconciliation Ritual is a crazy mishmash of therapies that feels like an entire psychological retreat crammed into a couple of hours. There is also a powerful body scrub and massage with an emphasis on lymphatic drainage and tension release (pictured)
The Haki Reconciliation Ritual – a crazy mishmash of therapies that feels like an entire psychological retreat crammed into a couple of hours.
It kicks off in the ‘Room of the Senses’, where a disembodied operatic voice encourages me to belt out vowel sounds with her.
Then coloured lights flash and I am asked to press a big button when I decide on my favourite – green.
Next, the voice urges ‘choose your favourite scent from the bottles in front of you’. I don’t like any and, ironically, feel my stress levels soaring.
Then it’s a powerful body scrub and massage with an emphasis on lymphatic drainage and tension release. Finally, I’m relaxing.
At the end, the whole thing goes super-mystical as you pick a symbol and paint it on to a canvas while considering what you want to shed from your life.
It’s not the standard spa package. Yet, several days later, I’m still thinking about it.
Am I balanced? No – but I can see how I might start to get there.
- Healing Holidays (healing holidays.co.uk) offers a three-night health-check programme at Bad Ragaz from £1,892 per person. Otherwise, the ‘haki reconciliation ritual’ is priced at £267 for 150 minutes.