In the Kneipp Center, President Ingeborg Pongratz and Secretary General Sigrid Rau welcomed the first guest from USA, Mrs. Mary-Rachel Clark-Wagner.…
As expected, the International Kneipp-Action-Days (Internationale Kneipp Aktionstage / I.K.A.T.) attracted Kneipp-Friends from Germany and from around the world: 3830 persons took part in 36 events in Ueberlingen on Lake Constance. Moreover, 300 students are still expected to visit the exhibition “Unterwegs nach Tutmirgut” (“On The Way to Wellness”) in Ueberlingen. “All in all”, as the president of Kneipp Worldwide, Marion Caspers-Merk, remarks, “we have really made an effective contribution to the promotion of health.”
The climax of the Kneipp-Action-Days was certainly the new world record in water walking: 1324 participants surpassed the record of the island Usedom and brought the title back to Ueberlingen on the Lake Constance – where the water temperature was, by the way, only 16 degrees Celsius. Ueberlingen had already held the record before: on May 17th 2008 (at the occasion of Sebastian Kneipps 188th birthday), 1154 participants had already established a world record in water walking.
During the International Kneipp-Action-Days five associations jointly announced 5 demands for health care policy, which also attracted great public attention.
The central statement of these five demands announced during the Kneipp-Action-Days is that the prevention of diseases and the promotion of health urgently deserve revaluation: they should be extended, coordinated better and submitted within a clear framework across the borders of the federal states. “In an ageing society this will become a key issue”, so Marion Caspers-Merk. These claims were signed respectively by the chairpersons or presidents of: Kneipp Worldwide /Kneipp-Bund (Kneipp Worldwide/Kneipp Association), Ärztegesellschaft Heilfasten/Ernährung (Physician’s Society for Therapeutical Diet and Nutrition), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Präventivmedizin und Präventionsmanagement (German Association for Preventive Medicine and Prevention-Management), Heilbäderverband Baden-Württemberg (Spa Association Baden-Württemberg) and the Verband Deutscher Kneippheilbäder und Kneippkurorte (Association of German Kneipp-Spas and Kneipp-Spa-Communities).
Marion Caspers-Merk emphasized that the promotion of health concerns society in general and suggested in her opening speech at the I.K.A.T. what that means: “On the one hand we must invest more in prevention and promotion of health. On the other hand people want to get more involved and make individual decisions suited to their situation instead of being dictated from above. They don’t want to be supervised or admonished. They want to do something actively themselves – preferably together with like-minded people.”
This is exactly the idea of the International Kneipp-Action-Days: learn to exercise, enjoy yourself, have fun – and do all this in good company, thus strengthening your body, mind and soul in the sense of Kneipp!