Rachel and I recently visited a fantastic spa in Newport called The Bodhi Spa. It was also recommended by local health and fitness expert Doug Perron, who is physical therapy assistant and is very in tune with proven therapy methods. The Bodhi Spa is located on the lower section of Thames St. in Newport, past the boutiques, bars, and restaurants that I am accustomed to seeing when I visit Newport. This unique spa (according to their brochure is the one and only of its kind in New England) offers a number of relaxing and invigorating spa and therapy treatments. Rachel and I signed up for The Water Journey, which incorporates hot and cold pools, saunas, a relaxation room, cucumber infused water, and a steam room.
I love knowledge and learning new things. According to their brochure, the word “SPA” translated back its original Latin means “sanitas par aquam” or “health through water.” Of all the health clubs I have visited with spas, whirlpools, steam rooms, saunas, I can bet very few club goers, including myself, put that together. Most people workout, jump in the hot tub, steam room or sauna, shower and then go back to their daily lives. Never realizing the health and therapeutic benefits of heat vs cold vs steam vs dry heat. The Bodhi Spa’s Water Journey is the realization of that latin phrase and their specific path of therapy pools guides you to “health through water.”
When you enter The Bodhi Spa, a calming welcome greets you. The staff were friendly and knowledgeable and soft spoken. Again, very calming welcome. After receiving towels, slippers, and a bathrobe, we were instructed to change into our bathing suits (they have full mens and womens locker rooms with secure lockers) after showering. The Water Journey room is located just past the massage therapy rooms in the back of the spa. As you enter, you can see courtesy signs of “Quiet Please” all around. They want you to respect that others are there to relax and unwind, as you would want others to respect your time. I liked that policy a lot. There are two water stations, a relaxation room, showers, and of course, the therapy stations.
The Water Journey is a guided path from hot pools to cold plunges to steam rooms to saunas. It is a calculated step by step process which helps your body and skin, your internal systems, and your mind get healthy. Each station has amazing effects for your body and your mind. Rachel and I followed the steps with excitement for the station we were at and anticipation for the next one.
The hot pools were mineral infused with dead sea salt or epsom salt which warmed my body and helped heal my skin. The concept of the heat therapy pool increases your body’s circulation and can aid in releasing toxins through your skin. The cold plunge pool was aptly named and was a shocking and yet very refreshing station. This cold plunge was not a wading pool, simply jump in and get out if the cold water is too much for you. The cold therapy aspect is critical to the blood stream providing fresh oxygen back to the circulatory system. If you have an injury, your doctor might suggest you rotate ice and heat for recovery. This alternating of heat and cold therapy stations is accomplishing this as well.
There were two types of sauna – a full spectrum infared sauna and a traditional hot sauna. Rachel and I tried both types in the Water Journey, each with their own unique feel. I learned that the infared sauna is designed to heat you from within, very interesting concept. Both saunas provided dry heat. As opposed to the steam room, which was quite the experience. The steam room offered a wonderful aromatherapy feel and was definitely something I had to get used to. The steam was so thick when you entered the room, you had to be careful not to run into another guest. After being in this room for a few minutes, I felt incredible and ready to jump into the cold plunge bath.
Rachel and I completed the Water Journey path twice. It took about an hour to complete one cycle and we enjoyed every minute of it. We visited The Bodhi Spa on a Friday and there were about 4 other couples in the pool area with us at all times. It was not crowded and I didn’t feel rushed or pressured to complete the therapy cycle. Upon leaving, my appetite was hearty and I felt relaxed and stress free. The next morning, I woke up feeling the same – my spirit, mind, and body felt recovered from a week’s worth of stress and work. I highly recommend The Bodhi Spa and The Water Journey and look forward to returning to The Bodhi Spa in the near future.
The Bodhi Spa
654 Thames St.
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