Water is the oldest treatment in medical history, it has been used for its healing properties since the earliest days by men and women to sooth and heal the injured and hurting parts of their bodies. Thus, their ill bodies feel better and also more relaxed..


Today, spa resorts, which use water and mud to heal people, are very famous in Europe. Millions of visitors each year go to their favourite spa resort to drink and bathe in mineral springs so that their backs, arms and legs will stop aching or their rough skin will feel smooth again.

Some of the most famous resorts are Baden Bein Wein  in Austria, Vichy in France, Marienbad in Czechoslovakia, Baden Baden in Germany, where guests put hot mud on their bodies, and Abano Terme in Italy, a resort which offers health-giving radioactive mud to its guests.

Some treatments provide bizarre and strange experiences. The spa  of Badgastein in Austria, for instance, has an old miner’s tunnel, now a ‘health tunnel’. You drive into the mountain in a truck and wear a helmet to protect your head. When you reach the depths of the tunnel, you take off your clothes and lie down naked while rich vapours surround you.

Because of the heat, a person sweats and can lose about 20 600 calories in an hour and thus decrease in weight. Visitors who have had this experience are very pleased and say that spa treatments are very relaxing.

But are spa resorts really beneficial? That is, do people really get something good and useful for their money there?

Many governments think they do. German, French and Austrian  visitors’ spa expenses are paid by the national health system. Obviously, these governments believe in the healing factor of spas or they wouldn’t let the health services pay so much money.

Not all experts, however, think spas are helpful. One doctor, for instance, recently reported, “It is silly to think that you can become a healthy person in a week or two at a spa when you have an unhealthylife style.” Some other sources also tell us that we should be careful about spas. Not long ago, a British banker told members of his staff not to go to  spas. He said, “There is usually a casino nearby where you can lose a lot of money in card games and the like.”





A. Mark the statements as True (T), False (F) or No Information (Nl).

1. It has been discovered only recently that water has healing properties.

2. Most Europeans don’t know about spas.

3. Baden Bein Wein in Austria is a spa resort where visitors put radioactive mud on their bodies.

4. Many people go to spas because the governments let the national health system pay for the spa expenses.

5. Visitors in Badgastein can become thinner while they are at the spa.

6. There is a casino near the spa in Baden Baden.

7. Everybody agrees that spa resorts are good for people’s health.


B. Mark the best choice.

1. Line 2, ‘to sooth’ probably means to . a) injure C) make feel better b) hurt d) make feel ill


2. A spa resort (line 5) is . a) a kind of tunnel where people lie down to relax b) a place where we can buy mineral water to drink c) a kind of mud which we put on our bodies d) a place where people go to feel better with the help of water and mud


3. Line 18, ‘naked’ means being . a) rich b) surrounded by vapour c) without clothes d) in the depths of a tunnel
4. Line 23, ‘beneficial’ probably means . a) expensive b) rewarding c) unhealthy d) paying /



C. What do the following refer to?
1. ‘If (line 1) :
2. ‘there’ (line 24) :
3. ‘they’ (line 25) : .
4. ‘they’ (line 28) :


1. What kind of substances are used by people in most spas around the world?
2. Why do people drink and bathe in mineral spring water?
3. What does the spa in Badgastein have which other spas don’t have?

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