skip to navigation »

I am here Introduction > Spa & Wellness > Overview of spa and wellness procedures

Overview of spa and wellness procedures

David Becher, Jean de Carro and other prominent physicians can be credited for balancing the spa therapy. Today's Karlovy Vary treatments involve pleasant walks through the spa colonnades and forest roads, the use of water directly at the sources, special diet and of course the various procedures that are often used in various wellness programs too.


Come to Karlovy Vary for treatment and discover the healing power of thermal springs.
Selection of spa programs »
Selection of wellness programs »

Below you will find a brief description of selected curative and wellness procedures. You will also learn something about the development of Karlsbad (Karlovy Vary) treatments and about the early, sometimes drastic curative procedures.


“Let your worries drift away”

Actually it was Charles IV who was the first to take the baths shortly after the discovery of the first hot spring. Since then and over the next 200 years, the Karlovy Vary thermal water was used exclusively for this purpose. Such a medieval bath involved up to ten hours of soaking the body or its parts. The intent was to crack the skin in order to “wash out the pollutants” from the body. These drastic methods lasted until the 16th century.

The 21st century baths usually last for about half an hour. The baths use only thermal spring water (72 °C), which for the purposes of baths is cooled to about 40 °C. Other sources are used for the drinking cures.

Bubble bath Immerse your whole body or its parts in thermal water (38 °C), bubbles will gently massage the skin and its blood supply, your muscles will be completely relaxed.
Carbonic bath Your skin absorbs CO2 from the thermal spring water enriched with this gas (35 °C), it strengthens your nervous and immune system and promotes blood circulation and relaxes the muscle tissue.
Dry carbonic bath The body below the neck is sealed in a plastic bag which is gradually filled with the CO2. This increases the oxygen content in the blood, expands the blood vessels and improves blood circulation throughout the body.
Peat bath Immerse your whole body or its parts in water containing beneficial substances and minerals from peat; these will help you to relax your muscles and to heal the wounds.
Mineral bath Mineral salts contained in the water at 40 °C have a beneficial effect on the regeneration of the body, have an effect on your heart and kidneys and improve your blood circulation.
Whirlpool baths Sanfte Massage des ganzen Körpers oder der Extremitäten durch wirbelndes Wasser; das in Sprudelwasser mit einer Temperatur von ca 38 °C durchgeführte Bad wirkt Schmerz mildernd.
Zusatzbäder Thermal water contains various additives, such as iodine, herbs, etc., which have a relaxing effect, helping the patient with the skin and physical problems (depending on the type of additives).

“The Becher drinking cure”

Water began to be taken internally only in the 16th century. Credit for that goes to Dr. V. Payer, who described this method in his book on the Karlsbad (Karlovy Vary) treatments. The drinking cure used to be carried to the extremes. The recommended daily dose was often more than five litres. Dr. David Becher, who can be credited with balancing the spa treatments, has put an end to that.

Since that time the spa guests drink no more than 1 litre a day. The drinking cure is based on 12 springs. The so-called 13th spring - Becherovka should be consumed at your discretion, but always in moderation.

Drinking curesDescription
Drinking cure On the recommendation of a doctor you will be drinking from specific spring within the specified amount and frequency for a specified period of time. Each spring has a different composition of mineral salts, ions and gases and thus it has different effects. It is also necessary to observe the “Ten Rules of the Karlovy Vary drinking cure”.

Ten rules of the Karlovy Vary drinking cure

The Karlovy Vary thermal mineral water is a complex, highly concentrated mixture of natural substances. It is not suitable for continuous or uncontrolled use.

  • It is recommended that the Karlovy Vary thermal mineral water is consumed only after consultation with a spa physician with the necessary qualification.
  • To achieve the highest therapeutic effect, it is recommended that you consume the Karlovy Vary thermal mineral water in the vicinity of springs.
  • It is also recommended to drink the Karlovy Vary thermal mineral water from the traditionally-shaped porcelain or glass cups.
  • The therapeutic cure should not be combined with alcohol drinking or with smoking of tobacco products. The passive inhalation of tobacco smoke is harmful also.
  • The drinking cure should also include exercise. Therefore it is recommended that you drink the water while walking at the slow pace.
  • The drinking cure should proceed with the peace of mind, without a hurry and in a complete relaxation.
  • It is recommended to repeat the drinking cure according to the schedule prescribed by your physician.
  • The drinking is a small celebration during which you must not disturb other clients.
  • Mineral water can’t be used to water plants around you and it should not be poured on the floor in the colonnade area.
  • Due to the health reasons you should not touch the spring stand and outflow pipes when you are taking the water from the spring vase.

“H2O – what a powerful molecule!”

The other procedures you will come across in Karlovy Vary make use of the pressure and temperature of water in the liquid and gaseous state.

Scottish showers Repeated changing of warm and cold water currents from a distance of 3 m at the constant pressure will improve your blood supply and relax your tense muscles.
Foot bath - pedalling Moving your feet between containers with cold and warm water will help your varicose veins, poor blood circulation in your legs or headaches.
Sauna Dry hot air and subsequent cold shower can help to improve your immunity, blood supply and prevent respiratory diseases.
Steam bath The air full of hot steam and subsequent warm shower will warm up your entire body, relax your muscles and mind.

“Relax please!”

Massages are a commonly used method in the balneology. It is a suitable supplement for the treatments of locomotor and lymphatic system. It also has beneficial effects on the nervous system. Massages promote overall body relaxation.

Traditional massage It has a positive effect on your lymphatic system, blood circulation and muscles, positive impact on the nervous system, helps to eliminate pain and has a relaxing effect.
Lymphatic drainage (manual or by machine) This special massage helps to flush out toxins from the body, to improve immunity and it also has cosmetic effects (reduces cellulite and regenerates your complexion...).
Reflexive massage Its pressure affects the individual acupressure points; helping to eliminate pain and its causes, pressing the points has a positive effect on the body functions.
Water massage (hydro-puncture) You sit in a bathtub full of warm spring water and the pressure from the water jets massages you, helps you to relax, it improves the blood flow and a proper function of the lymphatic system.
Honey massage Natural honey helps to detoxify the body; special touches and pressures provide relaxation, improve blood circulation and activate the lymphatic system.
Hot Lava Stone Massage The warmed lava stones and gentle massage techniques help to eliminate back and muscle pains, and stress.

“Recharge your body again!”

This spa therapy uses the beneficial effects of electricity on the human body. Using special electrodes, the electric current is supplied to the body in short impulses. There is nothing unpleasant about this method, it has a relaxing effect and what is the most important, it cures.

Electrotherapy The term electrotherapy represents many methods which use electricity for the treatment. It uses the low, middle and high current, applied in varying lengths of pulses. Electrotherapy can help with the diseases of joints, locomotor apparatus and metabolic disorders. It eliminates pain, improves blood circulation and relaxes muscles.
Magnetotherapy Magnetotherapy is one of the methods of electrotherapy. It uses electricity to create a magnetic field. Itt has anti-inflammatory and relaxing effects and improves blood circulation.

And God said “Let there be light!”

When the doctor will prescribe you therapy with light, perhaps you may feel sceptical a bit. But these feelings are definitely not correct. This therapy uses the light of different wavelengths or the parts of its spectrum.

Bioptron lamp Polarized light heals wounds and skin diseases, it is also suitable for diseases of the locomotor system, encourages healing and has anti-inflammatory effect to a depth of 3 cm.
Artificial sunlight lamp The lamp uses ultraviolet rays, heals skin diseases, inflammation and it also helps with the problems of osteoporosis.
Solux lamp It uses the infrared part of the spectrum, improves blood circulation, prevents musculoskeletal pain and relaxes muscles.
Laser therapy In medical science it is used to control pain, it has the healing and anti-inflammatory effects and can be used as a substitute for the acupuncture needle. It is also used in cosmetic surgery.

“Warm up your joints!”

A pleasant warming of your body parts has a positive effect on the locomotor system.

Heat therapyDescription
Paraffin Warm wraps and compresses are helpful in the treatment of the locomotor system; wax transfers heat (over 50 °C) through the skin into the deeper tissues and bones.
Artificial sunlight lamp The lamp uses ultraviolet rays, heals skin diseases, inflammation and it also helps with the problems of osteoporosis.

“Weightlessness will improve your health”

The spa hotels provide modern and time-tested treatment methods. Some of them are based on the new medical knowledge. Therapeutic factor is in the specific movements, oxygen, special additives or the temperatures well below freezing. Others are based on administering the mineral water “through other body openings”.

Therapeutic exercise (individual or group) It is always conducted by a trained physiotherapist, the exercise will improve your mobility and fitness, when you are familiar with the exercise, you can practice it at home.
Water gymnastics It uses the natural pressure and resistance of water, which makes it gentle on the joints and it also allows people with limited mobility to exercise.
Cryotherapy It involves the presence of 2 to 3 minutes in the chamber where the temperature is around -160 °C. It is effective against inflammations and pain. It improves sleep, immunity and sexual drive.
Gas injection (pneumopuncture) This version of acupuncture applies the CO2 under the skin, which relieves pain, supplying blood to the site of the application and supports the healing processes.
Oxygenotherapy It involves inhalation of nearly pure oxygen, it includes drinking of a special antioxidant drink. It regenerates the body, positively affects the brain, heart and memory, improves your sleep, has a positive effect on the psyche and prevents many diseases.
Inhalation The inhalation of fine spray of mineral water helps to eliminate allergies and respiratory diseases. Various additives such as medicaments, oils and salts can be added to the water.
Ultrasound It induces a feeling of weightlessness; it is performed in a special container with water from the Dead Sea to ease the tension and stress, helps with the muscular pain, eczema and psoriasis.
Floating Man schwebt scheinbar schwerelos in einem speziellen, mit Wasser aus dem Roten Meer gefüllten Tank – das Floating befreit von Anspannung und Stress, gleichzeitig hilft es auch bei Muskelschmerzen, Ekzemen und Schuppenflechte.
Intestinal wash-out Mineral water flushes out the sediments from the colon to prevent colon cancer, helps with digestive problems.

Come to Karlovy Vary for treatment and discover the healing power of thermal springs.
Selection of spa programs »
Selection of wellness programs »


Choose from a wide selection of accommodation in Karlovy Vary »


Virtuální infocentrum Karlovy Vary

Habrová 1445
363 01 Ostrov

Tel.: +420 773 378 559