Planning a ski trip? I know skiing is all about the thrill of speeding down the slopes, challenging your body and, of course, the fun of apres-ski – but I reckon that holidays like this should also include a few spa visits.
Ski and spa: a killer combination
In my opinion, skiing and spa visits go together really well. Yes, they are very different, but to me that’s part and parcel of what makes them such an inspired combination.
Most of the ski holidays I’ve been on have been all about pushing your body to the max and then partying long into the night – all of which is absolutely fantastic. But, it can leave you a little sleepy and sore, especially if, like me, you spend your 9-5 sat behind a desk all day.
Now, soreness doesn’t make for a particularly fun holiday, so it’s especially upsetting if it strikes on day one. By getting yourself to a spa regularly, though, you can help alleviate stiffness and get back to your best. Plus, it’s also just a great way to unwind – after all, that’s what holidays are all about.
A note on treatments
Anyone who’s been to a spa before knows there are usually loads of kinds of treatments on offer – and what’s best for you is quite a personal thing. Generally speaking, massages are a fantastic choice for spa breaks, since they help speed blood flow to your muscles and thereby encourage your body to recover faster.
And, actually, they can be useful before you even hit the slopes, as they can limber you up – and the suppler your muscles are, the less likely you are to get injured. So, things like Swedish massages and hot stone massages should be high on your list.
Saunas and steam rooms can also be fab for soothing aching muscles, but don’t discount other therapies too. For instance, if it’s been ages since you had a facial, now’s the perfect time to indulge. It may not help your skiing, but it’ll be a lovely way to end your holiday, leaving you feeling – and looking – refreshed and relaxed.
What I ask you to remember is that, for the most part, spa treatments are designed to be soothing rather than medicinal. So, if you need professional treatments for particular problem areas, it’s worth checking whether things like special sports massages are available before you book.
Where to go
First of all, you need to make sure the resort you go to actually has a few decent spas – or your plans of combining exercise and indulgence will be scuppered! La Plagne in France is a great choice, since it has both excellent slopes and a good selection of spas. Plus, there’s some fantastic accommodation available through companies like Snowchateaux.
Let’s finish by taking a quick look at the various spas available in La Plagne. Among the best is Spa Bellecote, which is located in the centre of Plagne Bellcote. This establishment is particularly interesting as it offers osteopathic treatments and specialist massages, as well as courses of treatments (as opposed to single sessions). That said, you can book individual sessions too, so don’t be put off if you don’t want to commit to several!
Another option worth considering is Spa at Les Balcons de Belle. Here, you’ll find a fitness centre – though you might not have the energy to use it! – as well as a sauna and indoor pool. This spa also offers great massages if you’re keen to give your muscles a treat.