Benefits and Experience
Balneology is the scientific study of the therapeutic benefits of naturally occurring mineral waters. In New Zealand, this science is not very well known, and is even less seldom practised. However, throughout Europe and Japan, balneology and hot springs therapy is very much a part of routine health care. Medical prescriptions are given by licensed doctors for the treatment of a wide range of conditions, and bathing in mineral waters as a part of preventative medicine is widely recognised and encouraged.
In addition to the value of the trace minerals found in most hot springs and the stimulating benefits of highly mineralised waters, balneotherapists generally agree on the following observations:
- Boron builds muscle mass, increases brain activity and strengthens bones. Maruia Hot Springs contains 1.9 PPM boron.
- Potassium assists in the normalisation of heart rhythms, assists in reducing high blood pressure, helps to eliminate body toxins and promotes healthy skin. Maruia Hot Springs contain 5.3 PPM potassium.
- Sodium and natural salts assist with the alleviation of arthritic symptoms and may stimulate the body's lymphatic system when used in baths. Maruia Hot Springs contain 97 PPM sodium.
The following procedures are recommended to maximise the benefit of bathing at Maruia Hot Springs:
Showering: Shower before entering the pools. It is important to thoroughly clean yourself before entering the pools in order to fully appreciate the bathing experience of relaxation, contemplation and socialisation.
Hydration: Before taking a hot spring bath, drink plenty of water in order to promote perspiration. Remember to remain hydrated throughout the bathing experience. Water fountains are provided at the pools or bring your bottled water (no glass please).
Adjusting to the temperature: Upon entering bathing pools adjust your body gradually to the hot spring. Pour the hot spring water over extremities such as toes and fingertips and then towards the heart. This step dilates the blood vessels of the surface of your body, which prevents dizziness later on.
Duration of bathe: Bathing in hot water for long periods causes a rise in blood pressures and increased heart rate. Bathe at a temperature of around 40 degrees celsius until you feel sweat lightly on your forehead, then sit outside of the pool for a break and re-enter once you cool down a little. Remember to keep drinking water. Bathing for more than 15 minutes without taking a break is not recommended. The key is to listen to your body.
Leave the minerals on your skin: As the beneficial mineral adsorption of the hot spring water can go on for three hours after leaving the pools, it is recommended you do not rinse your body after bathing.
Rest: After bathing your body gets tired even though you feel refreshed. It requires two to three hours until blood pressure stabilises, therefore take some time to rest, ideally for at least 30 minutes. Allow a cool down period of 20 to 30 minutes wrapped in your bath sheet recline in the pool-side lounges and soak up the unique atmosphere of our coastal dune surrounds. Be careful not to cool your body down completely.
Remember to drink plenty of water again to avoid dehydration.
For maximum health benefit bathing three times a day is recommended.