Heat Re­lief / Wrights Hot Spring Spas

The Life-Chang­ing Ben­e­fits of a Hot Spring Spa.

Latitude Magazine - - CONTENTS - WORDS Michelle Ber­ridge IMAGES Char­lie Jack­son

For most peo­ple, a spa is a bliss­ful treat that leaves them feel­ing re­laxed and happy, but for Ben Per­son it can make the dif­fer­ence be­tween be­ing able to sleep – or not.

After a spinal in­jury three years ago left him a quad­ri­plegic, Ben has adapted to life in a wheel­chair. For some­one who was pre­vi­ously fit and ac­tive, it hasn’t been easy. Ben likens it to be­ing on a long in­ter­na­tional flight – the tight mus­cles and the in­tense de­sire to just get up and go for a run, but with no pos­si­bil­ity of do­ing so. Add to that nerve pain, which for Ben is an in­tense ‘pins and nee­dles’ sen­sa­tion in the parts of the body with­out feel­ing, and the com­bi­na­tion of these fac­tors means ‘when you get to bed, you can’t re­lax,’ says Ben.

Wa­ter is one ther­apy that soothes the pain. ‘Even hav­ing a shower helps,’ he ex­plains, but the re­lief pro­vided by a spa pool is ‘life-chang­ing’. By re­lax­ing the mus­cles, es­pe­cially just be­fore bed, it en­ables Ben to sleep ‘to­tally dif­fer­ently. When I wake up in the morn­ing – that’s the big­gest dif­fer­ence – I wake up feel­ing re­freshed.’

Once Ben had de­cided to in­vest in a spa pool, his re­search led him to a Hot Spring from Wright Spa Pools. Al­though not the cheap­est on the mar­ket, the Hot Spring range is de­signed and made in the USA, so it’s at home in colder con­di­tions. Su­perb in­su­la­tion min­imises heat loss through the base, ‘so you save on power’.

Hot Spring has made a name

for it­self with fea­tures that re­duce en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact. Aside from heat-re­tain­ing in­su­la­tion, the spa Ben chose uses a low-volt­age plug. Not only does this make the spa more en­ergy ef­fi­cient, with less power draw, it makes in­stal­la­tion easy as there is no need for ad­di­tional wiring – it plugs straight into an ex­ist­ing out­door plug. A su­pe­rior fil­tra­tion sys­tem means it needs drain­ing less of­ten, a key fea­ture for Hot Spring, which takes the is­sue of wa­ter con­ser­va­tion se­ri­ously. Ben’s spa also uses a fresh-wa­ter salt sys­tem, turn­ing salt into chlo­rine to re­duce the need for chem­i­cals (and to be gen­tler on the skin).

Once he’d de­cided on a Hot Spring, the process was ‘re­ally straight­for­ward’, says Ben. ‘The guys are re­ally good.’ Wright Spa Pools, ex­clu­sive South Is­land agents for Hot Spring, of­fer a deluxe in­stal­la­tion ser­vice – check­ing the site, in­stalling the pool and fill­ing it. They also of­fer a com­pre­hen­sive backup ser­vice avail­able seven days a week. ‘The most tech­ni­cal time for cus­tomers is the first two months,’ says Matt Lowe, Man­ager of Wright Spa Pools, ‘then they’re away.’ The fresh-wa­ter salt sys­tem re­duces the need for wa­ter test­ing to just once a week and the pool needs only five to 10 min­utes a week to main­tain. For Ben, it couldn’t be eas­ier: once a week he puts a PH test­ing strip in the wa­ter and if some­thing needs ad­just­ing, most things can be con­trolled at the push of a touch­screen.

A mo­bile hoist helps Ben into the pool and, once there, the touch­screen re­mote used to op­er­ate the pool floats in the wa­ter, mak­ing it eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble. The new spa pool ‘makes a huge dif­fer­ence’, says Ben. ‘I would use it ev­ery night if I could.’ The ben­e­fits are ob­vi­ous for other cus­tomers too. Apart from help­ing peo­ple with aches and pains, and re­liev­ing ten­sion, many peo­ple ap­pre­ci­ate the op­por­tu­nity to spend ‘qual­ity fam­ily time’, says Matt, ‘open­ing up com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween adults and teens – a place where tech can’t be used!’

Apart from help­ing peo­ple with aches and pains, and re­liev­ing ten­sion, many peo­ple ap­pre­ci­ate the op­por­tu­nity to spend ‘qual­ity fam­ily time’.

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