Happiness: “a State of complete satisfaction, of plenitude”, according to the definition in the Larousse dictionary. The quest becomes obsessional at Val Thorens, the highest winter sports resort in Europe at 2,300 metres altitude in the Savoie region. Here, “happiness wishes everybody happy”, to quote Victor Hugo in which the phrase is used in the preface of “My Serenity, your guide to stress-busting and benevolent”. The paper booklet velvet has been filed by the “Live united” of the office of tourism, in other words, its “team” in your room of the hotel Pashmina (but this could be another multi-michelin-star resort).

The Pashmina, a beautiful five-star, created by the family val-thorinoise Gorini at the top of “Val Tho”, which has already expanded since its opening two years ago. A cocoon of luxury, which now enjoys the label “My Val Thorens Serenity”. This means that here, “we encourage holiday makers to adopt the reflex anti-stress”. And that they will be able “to maintain this sensation for as long as possible and return to the home”.

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A privileged area, located between 2,000 and 3.230 m above sea level. Denis BERTRAND/ACT MEDIA

We came to experiment with this label that was launched a year ago by the director of the office of tourism, Grégory Guzzo, who has to leave his job to join the Company of the Alps, and will be replaced by Vincent Lalanne-Studded, the current director of the association of the Three Valleys, starting February 1, 2019.

And let’s be honest, we were skeptical. What is peace possible in this station with 26,000 tourist beds on 1 km2 for a population of 300 people and 6,000 seasonal? How to stay zen when on the track the skiers push themselves and are squealing their boards? In the beginning of the season, there is already traffic on this prime area, located between 2,000 and 3.230 m above sea level, where you’ll find his new track ” going down of the Cime Caron where the view embraces the snow of the Three Valleys. In addition, in this beautiful circle of mountains, all the sounds respond to, including the music springing to the top of your lungs chalets altitude. Far from us the idea to condemn the venerable institution of the resort, the Gentle Madness, bar jazz plugged on the peaks. But how to practice the “ski serenity” in the constant movement and noise?

“Here, in the sports, meetings, landscapes, all combine to release stress and rejuvenate”.

Dr. Philippe Rodet

These reflections make us smile the doctor Philippe Rodet, for which the label “My Serenity” has arrived. “This is not the resort simpler!”, recognize this former emergency room physician, have become expert in management “benevolent”. It is he who has conquered Grégory Guzzo. The booklet handed out to holiday makers boasts that The Happiness without a prescription (editions Eyrolles), his best-selling book in which Philippe Rodet book his advice to work on his optimism, increase self-confidence, and enjoy the simple pleasures. His credo: “benevolence to all”. His wish: “that the practice of the ski is less wild”. The issue: “individuals too turned on themselves”.

The teacher Annie Breyton, prêne skiing “cool”, open arms. Valérie Sasportas

But the doctor is confident. He observes: “Here, in the sports, meetings, landscapes, all combine to release stress and rejuvenate”. Consultant to the station, but also others which he does not want to disclose the name, this non-skier comes regularly to deliver its “levers of motivation” among hoteliers, restaurateurs and managers of ski lifts.

“The ski therapy is a gentle approach and gradual thanks to the breathing and the visualization”.

Annie Breyton, a ski instructor therapy

Now, its halls are filled also tourists, sensitive to his way to criticize “the virtues of the discomfort, the concept of “positive stress”. Philippe Rodet assigns the label “My Val Thorens Serenity”, in the activities that generate more pleasure than stress. It is as well that the zip line was retoquée. But the “ski therapy”, launched by Annie Breyton in the snow school “ski cool” that she founded in 1987, bears the stamp. The former champion of speed skiing (175,35 km/h in 1982) was not expected.

Session of ski therapy . Denis BERTRAND/ACT MEDIA

“The ski therapy is a gentle approach and gradual thanks to the breathing and the visualization,” she says, a “best-of” of its proposals. It all starts on the snow front, in which, before donning the skis, it will teach us to breathe from the belly, through the chest, through the throat. Then, make the effort to see it on the track, in a positive way, of course. Then comes the time of the slides, open arms like a bird hovering, the next bearing away such as when one is at the wheel. “I get a lot of women in their thirties, and young mothers who suddenly are afraid to get hurt,” said Annie Breyton, the energy of which quiet dissolves the apprehension of those (and those) who fear that they may slip, get hit. And we are surprised with our performance induced by the confidence, smiling .

“two feet in the snow, standing, still, we are going to close our eyes and suspend the top of the head, is let through by the energy that one feels”

Caroline Vincent, a ski instructor hiking Qi gong

In the same vein, skiing hiking Qi gong is a flagship activity of the label Serenity. The movement and the noise incessant Val Thorens never disrupt the session proposed by Caroline Vincent, instructor ESF and practitioner of chinese medicine. “The idea is to know how to make the silence itself despite the bustle outside,” says this athletic energy, “very yang” of the station. “But, this energy can be tiring,” recognizes that, in the summer, get away from it, becomes a guardian of the refuge of la Lavey in the valley of Vénéon (Oisans).

With the Qi gong, it becomes a trait d union between the energy of heaven and that of earth. “Both feet in the snow, standing, still, we are going to close our eyes and suspend the top of the head, is let through by the energy that one feels,” says this former follower of freestyle skiing, specifying the neophytes that “Qi gong” means “work of the energy through the body”. “Release the sacrum,” she continued and support on your ski boots this relieves instantly the back. Each movement is approached with lenuser. The opposite of life in the station and on the field.

The followers of chinese medicine, meditation and any other therapeutic energy, are already convinced by the method, however most of them had not thought of benefit in the snow. Caroline Vincent also runs his sessions indoors, in a place unusual, the Alpen Art. Unusual indeed to practice this activity in this restaurant, art gallery held by the daughter of a mountain guide, who defends artists val-thorinois and providing meals to full consciousness. Philippe Rodet did not hesitate, for this “cocooning” where one feels good, it has given its label.

Relaxing on the summits in the face of the resort of val Thorens Cyril Cattin


go – TGV train Station of Moutiers Salins Brides – les – Bains and 37 km ride to the station.

Hotel Pashmina refuge – 5-star hotel, has 54 rooms and 2 igloos-pod, geodesic domes, each housing a room in bright colors on the roof terrace of the 4th floor. According to room and period, from 543 euros and 1.500 euros per night per person in half board, phone: ; hotelpashmina.com

Ski Therapy at the snow school Ski cool – 5 mornings from Monday to Friday from 9.15 am to 11.30 am: 221 € per person on the basis of 5 participants, phone:; ski-cool.com

cross-country Skiing and Qi gong with Caroline Vincent – from 50 € per person based on 8 participants ; lenergiedubienetre.wordpress.com

Office de tourisme de Val Thorens – phone: ; valthorens.com

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