Why you should seek out a relaxation pool on your next break

Slipping into a warm and welcoming relaxation pool is one of the many pleasures that await you during your next spa day or overnight spa break. Whether you opt for a pool in which you can swim a few gentle widths or one that encourages you to sit and unwind, there is no doubt that the wellness powers of water can work wonders on even the most stressed mind and tense body.

Rena Spa at The Midland Hotel Swimming Pool
What is a relaxation pool?

A spa’s relaxation pool can be found either inside or outside (some spas have both). The pool will be heated to a comfortable temperature, which means that many spas allow guests to use the outdoor facilities all year round. Relaxation pools can come in different sizes. Some are designed for gentle swimming, while others are closer to hydrotherapy pools, in which you simply get comfortable in the water and practice gentle movement. Like hydro pools, relaxation pools can feature a range of fountains and jets that add to the experience by creating different pressures that can ease aches and pains.

Who can benefit from a relaxation pool?

Nearly anyone can enjoy the experience of a relaxation pool. They are especially beneficial for those who have tense or aching muscles. For example, if you’re coming off a full-on workout in the gym or sports session. Maybe you’ve just been working hard or going through a period of stress and have stored up some tension in your body. Likewise, you might just be in need of some calming downtime and would like to spend a few minutes enjoying the warm water and soothing jets.

There are a few groups of spa-goers for whom relaxation pools are not recommended. Pregnant women are generally advised to avoid water jets and the slippery poolside. Likewise, if you’ve recently had surgery, have cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, or a respiratory infection, please check with your doctor before your spa visit. Eating a big meal or drinking alcohol should also be avoided prior to enjoying a relaxation pool.

How does a relaxation pool work?

Relaxation pools harness the wellness properties of water. They do this primarily through the use of warmth and movement to relax the muscles. Relaxation pools designed for swimming are gently heated, not to extremes, but to a comfortable temperature of around 27C (80F). Hydrotherapy pools, which are designed for more limited movement, are kept slightly warmer, at temperatures of around 33C (91F). (In comparison, a Jacuzzi or hot tub can reach a very toasty 38C (100F)!)

Relaxation pools often feature built-in jets, fountains and other features that shoot out water at different pressures. The idea is that these features massage the body, easing aches, pains and tensions, leaving you calm, relaxed and rejuvenated.

Additional benefits include stimulating the lymphatic system, flushing out toxins, and helping to alleviate headaches and joint pain. Hydrotherapy is often used as part of the rehabilitation process for some injuries and joint issues. However, this should be guided by medical professionals to avoid doing more harm than good. In terms of relaxation pools, the main benefits are not so much healing as resting and de-stressing.

Relaxation pools in the UK

If you would like to harness the health and wellness benefits of water therapy during your next spa day or overnight spa break, here are just a few of our favourite spas with a lovely relaxation pool.

Rena Spa at The Midland Hotel, Manchester, Greater Manchester: One of our luxury spas, the Rena Spa at The Midland Hotel enjoys a central city location and offers a wide range of facilities, including a Jacuzzi, alder-wood sauna featuring a Himalayan salt block wall, and a salt-infused aromatherapy steam room. You can also unwind in the wonderful, heated relaxation pool. Book now.

Ragdale Hall Spa, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire: More luxury awaits at Ragdale Hall Spa, which features an excellent range of activities, amenities and facilities to complement your restful country spa day or overnight stay. When it comes to water therapy, you can choose from no less than six pools, including the stunning relaxation pool with a whirlpool, cascade and massage jets. Book now.

The Shrigley Hall Hotel, Macclesfield, Cheshire: Set in 262 landscaped acres near to the Peak District, The Shrigley Hall Hotel is a wonderful destination for a rejuvenating spa experience. Housed in a former chapel, the tranquil Bazaar Spa features a range of water-based facilities, including a relaxing serenity pool and whirlpool. You can also relax in the outdoor hydro pool. Book now.

The Malvern Spa, Malvern, Worcestershire: Treat yourself to some well-deserved spa luxury at The Malvern Spa, which offers all the elements you need for a rejuvenating country retreat. The spa facilities include a salt grotto, crystal steam room, and herb sauna. Enjoy all the wellness benefits of water in the restful swim-through indoor hydrotherapy to outdoor swimming pool. Book now.

DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Westerwood Spa & Golf Resort, Glasgow, Central Scotland: Nestled in beautiful countryside yet within easy reach of Glasgow, Edinburgh and Stirling, the DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Westerwood Spa & Golf Resort is perfect for a Scottish spa escape. The facilities include a relaxation room and chamber, sauna and steam room. Unwind in style in the lovely indoor spa relaxation pools. Book now.

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