In the spring of 2016, Henderson Productions took a big self-directed trip to New Zealand.   Our research told us to check out the Fiji Air flight offering an overnight in Fiji to breakup the travel time from the west coast.    This is a description of our stopover in this lovely island country.    We recommend it.

The WAI Zone is “where water is the essence of life”.    So proclaimed the Spa Treatment Guide.    It features water in its three states: gas – the steam room; liquid – the hydrotherapy pool and rain forest shower, and solid – the ice room.   Each of these water states offer unique benefits when used either in isolation or when combined to form an integrated hydrotherapy program.     Whew!

The guide features multiple combinations for different purposes but the basic combo is 1 – rain shower – 3-4 minutes; 2 – ice shower 1-2 minutes; 3 – hydrotherapy pool (10-20 min); 4 – rain shower for another 2 w cool water; 5- steam room for 10-15 minutes and a rain shower to finish.   “Alternate exposure to hot and cold water with the zone is a core component for hydrotherapy treatments. “

“To gain the benefits of cold-water therapy, begin with our rain shower in the ice room.   Begin by wetting your feet.   Next, use the ladle to expose your hands and face to the ice-water.   Finally, step under the six shower jets for full emersion.   Let the cold jets run over your scalp and face, the front of your body and then down your back.   You can begin with a shower that lasts only a couple of seconds.”

“Cold water stimulates the autonomic nervous system (which controls involuntary functions, such as heartbeat and breathing) to raise blood pressure, increase heart rate and constrict blood vessels.   As the autonomic responses strengthen with each exposure, it stabilizes blood pressure, improves circulation and balances other bodily functions, such as the sleep/awake cycle.   Ice room treatment stimulates the body to release cytokines and endorphin hormones which fight pain and enhance immunity levels.   Cold water activates sensory nerves that lead to the brain.   A cold, exhilarating shower can be emotionally uplifting and prime a person to seize new experiences”.      WOW.

Let’s consider those “benefits”.   1.  It DEFINITELY raises blood pressure and constricts blood vessels.   It also almost stops your breathing.   2.  It improves your circulation when your skin temperature starts to rewarm and allow blood to flow again.   3.   Well, the net effect of an hour back and forth is I definitely want a nap.    So, if that’s balancing my sleep/awake cycle – uh, ok.    OR perhaps it’s that I was awake for 2 hours in the middle of the night with jetlag.   4.  Don’t know what was released except a few expletives muttered at spa volume.   It DID clear out my stuffy sinuses and freezing the sinus cavity always makes my head better.   5.  Sensory nerves have been activated in my brain.     Hmmmm.   Did I notice?   6.  Emotionally uplifting – dunno about that one.    7.  Primed to seize new experiences?    You mean other than travelling literally to the other side of the earth and taking an ice shower?

What’s your experience in Fiji or the South Pacific?   We’d love to hear your

thoughts and suggestions on Facebook at “suehendersonphotography”