The core of the Park Igls agenda is the basic seven-day programme, with three medical assessments, daily Kneipp treatments (body part baths at contrasting temperatures), a diet plan, use of the swimming pool, sauna and panoramic gym, plus a wide selection of group activities and lectures (with simultaneous English translation). In a single day, I had the choice of aqua aerobics, Nordic walking, gymnastics for the feet and skills training – tips on how to overcome my lack of will power.
And golf, of course. In line with my mission, I zoned in on the 50-minute introductory session, its emphasis on perfecting the short game on the well prepared putting green next to the chef’s herb and vegetable gardens. Hanni Gartner, therapist and athletic 15 handicapper, displayed commendable patience and enthusiasm as she demonstrated chipping basics to me and my four fellow students. She may not have been optimistic about what she saw, but my chipping has been unusually accurate since I returned home.
The following day, we tried to up our levels with her Pre-Shot preparation for a proper golf swing, something I’ve never managed to achieve. She also introduced routines using therabands (colour-coded resistance strips as used in physiotherapy) and large rubber balls to strengthen swing planes and improve balance.
Those who want to spend more time on their game can sign up for a dedicated golf add-on to the basic package. Golf@Mayr, available between June and October, includes three-day green fees at neighbouring Rinn and Lans courses, body massages and a beeswax liver compress. TheMedGolf® takes a more physical perspective, with golf-specific functional analysis and coordination training, pre-shot exercise modules and lessons with a pro. Park Igls also offers two and three-night Girls-Only Golf weekends between June and October, with packages that cover green fees, body massage and a therapeutic treatment of choice.
Experienced players often book a final Friday tee time at Achensee, the oldest course in Tyrol dating back to 1934. Despite being surrounded by mountains, it is very walkable, with lush fairways winding along the valleys. Best avert your eyes from the 19th hole, a clubhouse loved by the members for its excellent food. As far as the Park Igls guests are concerned, this is the no chance saloon: your minder will have you back in the minibus long before you can say ‘ein grosses Bier, bitte’, let alone ‘Wiener Schnitzel mit Pommes (chips)’.
Park Igls’ extensive portfolio has male and female health check weeks, plus the comprehensive Modern Mayr Medical Check, with blood tests, echocardiology and ultrasound. Individual services range from physical therapies and pampering treatments to diagnostic heart and cancer screening. Supplementary activities (extra charges apply) include an Innsbruck city tour, a visit to the Riedel crystal factory, Modern Mayr cookery courses on site and evening outings to the Tyrolean State Theatre – Oliver was the production during my week.
Book whatever takes your fancy – but don’t miss lunch. This is the main meal of the day, a showcase for the considerable talents of Markus Sorg, the head chef who learned his trade during his teens as an apprentice in his grandmother’s Tyrolean restaurant in Innsbruck. His tasty take on food combining may mean rare sliced duck breast or grilled char accompanied by assorted miniature vegetables.
The results are mouthwatering, but portions disappoint. Gratifyingly, my final medical check revealed a weight loss of 2.10 kilos. So lucky I’d never dared ask for more.