The 5 Pillars of Kneipp Therapy

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The roots of naturopathy are in Kneipp's healing system. One of the most important characteristics of Kneipp therapy is to gently stimulate the body "to give nature a gentle hand"—thereby strengthening the immune system and raising the tolerance to stress. Kneipp was a strong believer in physical exercise, simple food, and a "regular style of life for body mind, and soul." outlines the five pillars of Kneipp therapy:

1. Hydrotherapy
Water works as a natural stimulus on the body. It increases energy, resistance to disease, and improves body-awareness. The therapeutic qualities of water have a positive effect on the nervous and hormone systems as well as the psyche. Kneipp hydrotherapy treatments are finely adjusted to suit the individual and situation.

2. Herbs — Phytotherapy
Kneipp has documented, scientific research that herbs and phytotherapy have a prophylactic or healing effect on the body. Kneipp herbal treatments can be prepared in various forms, such as teas, ointments, oils, baths, and herbal wraps.

3. Exercise-Kinesiotherapy
Sensible physical exercise stimulates important functions of the body, including the muscular/skeletal system, the cardiovascular system, the nervous system and the digestive tract. Massage is an indispensable supplementary treatment to exercise.

4. Nutrition — Dietetics
Kneipp believed that nutritional diseases can be avoided or cured by a well-balanced, low-fat diet consisting of fresh food prepared in such a way that the vitamins remain intact.

5. Lifestyle — Regulative Therapy
Lifestyle and Health Education must be considered the most important part of Kneipp's doctrine. In addition to leading a balanced life, Kneipp believed that it is of equal importance to strive to live in harmony with one's social and natural environment.