What Is Wellness? Understanding Wellness Retreats

What Is Wellness? Understanding Wellness Retreats

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What is wellness?

The word ‘wellness’ is used a lot but what does it really mean? And, more importantly, what does it mean for you and your daily life? As a general term, wellness dates back to ancient civilisations. However, it has evolved to mean a collection of ‘factors’ that contribute to an all-around healthy life. These factors include:

- Physical: This relates to how we treat our bodies, including getting a good night’s sleep, eating nutritious food and taking regular exercise

- Emotional: This relates to our mental wellbeing, such as dealing with stress and processing our feelings in a positive way

- Social: This relates to forging connections with those around us, from friends and family to the wider community

Other aspects that feed into wellness are spiritual awareness, our relationship with the environment, and our mental engagement with the world. For more, see this article from the Global Wellness Institute.

Overall, wellness means taking a holistic view to your health, to achieve and maintain a harmonious balance between body, mind and spirit.

The word ‘wellness’ is used a lot but what does it really mean? And, more importantly, what does it mean for you and your daily life? As a general term, wellness dates back to ancient civilisations. However, it has evolved to mean a collection of ‘factors’ that contribute to an all-round healthy life. These factors include:

- Physical: This relates to how we treat our bodies, including getting a good night’s sleep, eating nutritious food and taking regular exercise

- Emotional: This relates to our mental wellbeing, such as dealing with stress and processing our feelings in a positive way

- Social: This relates to forging connections with those around us, from friends and family to the wider community

Other aspects that feed into wellness are spiritual awareness, our relationship with the environment, and our mental engagement with the world. For more, see this article from the Global Wellness Institute.

Overall, wellness means taking a holistic view to your health, to achieve and maintain a harmonious balance between body, mind and spirit.

Understanding wellness retreats

For people looking to restore this balance to their lives, wellness retreats are an attractive option. There are now lots of UK wellness retreats, each offering guests the chance to unwind, reset and benefit from dedicated downtime.

You will find most wellness retreats are located in tranquil beach or country settings, so you can reap the health benefits of the natural environment, with access to plenty of fresh air, inspiring views and the sounds of nature. Retreats can last for a couple of days to a month or more and usually only accommodate a small number of guests at a time. There will be staff on hand to lead and guide any organised sessions.

Often, there will be a timetable of gentle solo or group activities, such as yoga or meditation, or cooking classes to encourage good nutritional habits. Of course, there is also plenty of opportunity for spending time alone, enjoying the peace and quiet. As well as UK wellness retreats, you can find plenty of options overseas, which offer a different vibe (and nicer weather!).

Beyond dedicated wellness retreats, UK spas also offer a chance to focus on your own wellbeing. Whether you opt for a health spa that places a specific focus on wellness with tailored programmes, or you simply select a quiet spa location and enjoy some self-directed downtime, a spa break can work wonders to rejuvenate and reset the mind and body. You will enjoy access to leisure facilities, such as swimming pools, Jacuzzis and saunas. There will also be a range of spa treatments that offer the chance to relax in a calming environment.

The main benefit of spas and wellness retreats is that they demand you take a break from your daily commitments and stresses. They are also electronics-free zones, so you get to switch off your devices and enjoy a digital detox.

How SpaSeekers’ spas can assist with wellness

While all our spas offer a peaceful backdrop against which to enjoy some focussed ‘me’ time, if you’d like to put an emphasis on wellness on your next spa break, here are some things you might like to try.

Movement: Choose a spa that offers a range of exercise classes to reap the benefits of gentle exercise, such as yoga and Pilates. Alternatively, make the most of the spa’s swimming pool or enjoy gentle walks in the hotel’s grounds.

Nutrition: A health spa or all-inclusive venue will usually serve up nutritionally balanced meals that nourish the body, helping you to try something new, jumpstart a healthier regime, or give your body a chance to reset. Be sure to let the spa know about any special dietary requirements, such as gluten-free or plant-based.

Improved sleep: Spa treatments, such as a soothing massage, can promote healthy, natural sleep, as well as alleviate stored-up tensions and stresses. Opt for a spa package that offers the option of a full-body or back, neck and shoulders massage. If you’re a little uncomfortable at the thought of disrobing, try a restful head massage instead.

Lorrens Ladies Spa and Pool

Options for your next wellness-focussed spa break

To give you an idea of what’s available, here are just a few spas and spa packages you might like to consider:

Lorrens Ladies Spa in Torquay, Devon offers a range of spa day and overnight packages that focus on wellness, whether your goals are to develop a healthier lifestyle or just to relax. Book now.

The Boutique Wellness Spa in Cambridge features a selection of spa day and overnight packages that are designed to relax the body and mind. Book now.

Lifehouse Spa & Hotel in Thorpe le Soken, Essex, one of our luxury spa hotels, boasts a wonderfully tranquil setting and extensive leisure facilities. Among the packages on offer is the One-Night Midweek Serenity Spa Break, which includes a massage and facial, along with unlimited use of the thermal spa area, gym, gardens and grounds. Book now.

The House of Daniel Thwaites family offers a Taste of Wellness spa day at several venues across the UK. The package includes the choice of a spa treatment, such as a back or scalp massage, plus two hours’ use of the facilities and lunch. Book now.

The Bannatyne group of health spas offers the Two-Night Revitalising Retreat Spa Break at three of its residential locations. Among its inclusions, the break features the choice of two relaxing spa treatments and full use of the leisure facilities. Book now.

Wellness in your everyday life

Of course, the focus on our mental and physical health shouldn’t be restricted to a spa or wellness retreat. Indeed, it should be something that is incorporated into our daily lives. There are lots of steps we can take to optimise our wellbeing, many of which are simple and easy to introduce in our day-to-day routine.

Mediation: Introducing a short session of meditation into your daily life can offer lots of benefits, such as stress reduction, restoring mental balance, and improved concentration. Even a few minutes a day can calm the mind.

Exercise: There are lots of ways to get more active that don’t require expensive gym memberships or full-on cardio. Get into the habit of incorporating more walking into your life or find a fun leisure activity, such as swimming, cycling or dancing that you’ll look forward to – that way it won’t feel like a chore!

Sleep: Lots of things can prevent us from enjoying healthful sleep, which is crucial to maintaining good mental and physical health. Start by ensuring your sleeping environment and routine are optimised. Cut out pre-sleep caffeine, big meals and screen time, maintain a calm, dark and temperate bedroom during sleep time, and try to go to bed at the same time each day (even at weekends).

If you need some guidance and advice on everyday wellness, there are lots of resources out there to help, such as books, websites and podcasts. For example, the NHS’ Live Well website offers tips on all aspects of wellness, while Mindful.org is a handy resource for meditation. The Mental Health Foundation also offers some useful resources, including this report that contains advice on getting a good night’s sleep. If you’d prefer a podcast, The Doctor’s Kitchen offers advice on nutrition and more. Radio Headspace features a selection of podcasts on sleep, meditation and other aspects of wellness. The Happy Mind, Happy Life podcasts are another interesting listen, covering such topics as reducing anxiety, getting into good habits, and achieving balance.

Please note that while the things we discuss in this article can be beneficial, if you’re struggling with your mental health, it’s important to seek out professional help.