Last week I spent the day at a spa and wanted to share a spa practice that you can do at home. Super relaxing (and at the same energizing) and detoxifying. Something that we can do on a weekly basis without any fancy tools.
You know when you alternate between hot and cold waters? This is called hydrotherapy and it’s the same concept that you’ll find at those water spas, such as Body Blitz in Toronto, Scandinave in Collingwood, Whistler, Ottawa and Quebec, or Esalen in Big Sur. Or even jumping in the snow or a cold lake after sweating it out in a hot tub or sauna: taking your body between hot and cold.
Here’s how hydrotherapy works:
- The hot water slows down the body, bringing blood flow to the skin’s surface, helping muscles relax and blood vessels expand
- The cold water is stimulating and pushes the blood flow inward towards the vital organs
Benefits of hydrotherapy:
- Detoxification and increased elimination of wastes and toxic material
- Enhances blood and lymphatic circulation
- Increases the body’s production of digestive enzymes and enhances digestion and nutrient assimilation
- Increases oxygen to the internal organs and increases cellular metabolism
What you’ll need:
- Bathtub with shower
- Epsom/bath salts (learn the difference and how to make your own or buy all natural bath salts from a health food store and add your own fragrance using this guide. You don’t want those artificially scented epsom salts from the drugstore)
- Glass of water
- Reading material
How to give yourself a hydrotherapy detox:
- Fill your bathtub with comfortably warm water. Add a large scoop of Epsom and sea salts. Light some candles! Sit in the bathtub for as long as you like. Bring in a book or a mag. Bring in a big glass of water to keep yourself hydrated.
- After some 10-15 minutes, remove some of the warm water and add very hot water. You want the bathtub to be quite warm. Sit in it for 5-10 minutes, or until your body comes up in temperature.
- Pull the plug on the hot water. You’ll be quite hot and will need to bring your body temperature down. You may feel a little faint, so be careful if you must stand up. Just run the shower on yourself with the coldest water possible. Try to stay under the cold water for one minute even though it’s freezing.
- Put on your bathrobe and sit somewhere with your reading material and a cup of tea. You’ll still be sweating and you should relax and rehydrate.
- Take a shower to wash off all the sweat! Finish by moisturizing with coconut oil.
- Remember to keep yourself hydrated for the rest of the day/evening. Because you end up sweating so much, this type of detoxification is very dehydrating.
Note: consult with your doctor if you’re elderly or have a heart condition, including high or low blood pressure, before trying this at home.