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Slovakia's Coolest Spa

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  • amiak27
    From The British Guardian, http://tinyurl.com/2x7cwf Freezing in the name of beauty Mat Smith dons breathing mask, mittens, shorts and clogs to brave freezing
    Message 1 of 2 , Mar 28, 2007
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      From The British Guardian,

      http://tinyurl.com/2x7cwf


      Freezing in the name of beauty

      Mat Smith dons breathing mask, mittens, shorts and clogs to brave
      freezing his body in temperatures of -120°C. Slovakia's extreme
      cryotherapy craze proves men and spas can mix

      * Guardian Unlimited
      * Thursday December 7 2006
      The doctor finished taking my blood pressure and unwrapped my arm.
      "Excellent. You are – how do you say in England – as healthy as a
      horse? Here in Slovakia we say you are as healthy as a fish! Ha ha ha!
      And now we go - to freezing!"

      Bewildered, I tried to laugh along with the doctor in order to appear
      polite, but in truth, I was quite alarmed by the concept of what was
      about to happen. Being reduced to -120°C for two minutes inside a box
      the size of a lift is no laughing matter. More serious, though, is
      what would happen if you didn't leave on time. Apparently, after four
      minutes, you would enter a euphoric, trance-like state, closely
      followed by death, which I wasn't really all that keen on. But the
      doctor reassured me that two minutes would be fine, and – perhaps
      foolishly, given his earlier comment about fish – I agreed.

      First developed in eastern Europe to treat the stresses and strains of
      high-performance athletes, cryotherapy has since taken off as the
      latest in beauty treatments, based on the idea that being reduced to
      very low temperatures for short periods can promote physical healing.
      It is available in London at over £30 per session, but is on offer for
      £10 at the Aquacity resort, in Poprad, Slovakia, where it has proved a
      popular addition to the hotel complex's selection of spas, thermal
      pools and water slides.

      Wearing a stylish combination of headband, breathing mask, mittens,
      shorts and clogs – supplied by the cryotherapy centre, although I
      expect you'd be welcome to bring your own – I passed the preliminary
      medical examination and was led into the cryocentre itself, a kind of
      futuristic sauna room. I watched with interest as the temperature
      readings on the doctor's computer reached their maximum levels. As the
      charts touched -121°C, he gave me an unreliable grin, pulled the lever
      to open the massive steel door, and ushered me in.

      You don't just leap straight in to the coldest room, though –
      presumably immediate exposure to -120°C would cause all kinds of
      technical, life-ending problems. Instead clients are initially
      introduced to an intermediate ante-chamber, chilled to a mere -60°C.
      After 30 seconds, the doctor pulls another lever, and, in a burst of
      fog, the door to the main chamber is opened.

      the story continues at the web site above ...

      My own experience has been limited to a hot sauna at about 190 or 195
      F and going out to lie down or roll in the snow at -40. It is quite
      invigorating!

      My admiration goes to the maintenance workers at Galena, Alaska who
      would go out at -60F and jump into a manhole at +120F to repair steam
      leaks ...

      Ron
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