Prescription cycling | Possibility of health insurance subsidy

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Cycling has been growing in popularity not only since Corona. And what makes a bike ride that already provides a lot of exercise and fresh air, even healthier? Cycling holiday “on prescription”, combined with autogenic training and courses for healthy nutrition. Best of all, most health insurance companies provide a subsidy of 150 euros if you apply for it in advance.

1000 kilometers of cycle paths in Hasetal

As the British Prime Minister Winston Churchill once said: “You must make your body good so that your soul feels like living in it.” The 15 participants on the five-day short holiday, who spent this Sunday afternoon in the stylishly restored, historic “Burghotel” in Haselünne by tourist guide Willi Kötter (66), probably thought so too. Hasetal cycle path network covers 1000 kilometers, of which we will cover 180. Haselünne is located in the heart of the Emsland route and Willi Kötter is an Emsland veteran. He knows the country and its people and is always in a good mood. Willi will lead us daily 35 to 50 kilometers through the quiet and relaxing nature in Hasetal, and shows the most beautiful cafes, cozy locations and attractions.

On the day of arrival, after being greeted, we get on our bikes, whether our own or rented, everyone has chosen electric bikes. Willi helps with recruitment, and even newcomers find their way around quickly. Over the next few days, we cycle on comfortable bike paths and almost car-free roads through untouched cultural and peat landscape, past the only wind and water mill in Emsland and a giant boulder, the colossus Hüven. Nice detached houses, large farms and stables along our road. Everything looks so neat and peaceful. The call “car or cyclist from the front” or “tractor from behind” will follow us on the narrow country roads all day, even if it is only rarely heard.

Regional delicacies

Our first trip leads via Bawinkel to the “Kräuterhof Rosen” in Geeste. The farm, hidden in the forest edge, offers visitors not only coffee and homemade cakes, but also a collection of antique household appliances in the so-called herbal kitchen and a small farm shop with homemade, regional delicacies during a tour. Sitting outside and inside is very comfortable. So that the blueberry and gooseberry cream cakes do not become eternal gold, we hop on the bikes for another 20 kilometers on the way back. Less experienced cyclists are reassured that the “Jagdhaus Wiedehage”, where the dinner takes place, is right next to the “Burghotel”.

Imaginative and real cheese domes

The next day, the health service becomes serious. After all, most insurance companies add 150 euros for the two prevention courses “Autogenic training” and “Healthy nutrition”. After a delicious breakfast, Christine Egbers is waiting for us at 9 in the hotel’s “little knight’s hall”. The trained nurse found the path to autogenic training through her own stress and then took the therapist training. She will introduce us, both newcomers and experienced, to the proven relaxation technique four times, each time for 90 minutes. Even initial skeptics have found a way to deal with the suggestive power of thought after four days. For some it is the imaginary cheese dome, for others it is the newly purchased red bicycle raincoat, under which they find protection and from which all stress bounces.

Then cycle through the surrounding villages of Flechum, Felsen, Dohren and Andrup. A good brunch awaits us in Dohren in Caféstübchen Meyers for only 8 euros. The owner Bärbel Meyers is well aware of this, says Willi, but for her a cake under 300 grams is just a biscuit, as a slogan on the wall tells visitors.

distilled water

Because the medieval Hanseatic city of Haselünne has become famous for its excellent distilled water, a visit to a corn distillery is a must. Haselünne, the oldest town in Emsland, “was also called Fuselünne in the past”, says guide Annette Pelz on a tour of Heydt. Roche, the city’s oldest distillery, and Heydt are still privately owned and make their own grain products. Both offer regular tours. Although the Berentzen company moved its production to Minden in 2008, there is still a tour of the distillery museum. Grain seminars are very popular with tourists. The safe drinks can of course also be tasted. “Every other year there is a well-attended historic grain and hansa market,” says Annette Pelz.

Steal apples welcome

The next morning we get back on the bikes for 40 kilometers. The first destination this time is the old village school in Lohe, which has been lovingly renovated by the association for the preservation of local history and customs and is used in a number of ways. Today, nutritionist Martina Dröge is waiting for us there, and we will meet again the next day at Heimathaus Haselünne. According to the theory – “a Black Forest cake has the same energy density as a wheelbarrow full of cauliflower” – and “the dose makes the poison” (Dröge), everyone goes to the kitchen. Both days wash groups of wood, clean, chop, cook – and of course eat and wash up. Even Bernhard (74), who has never worked in the kitchen, realized on the second day of the course that “cooking can also be fun”.

Autogenic training and guided tour in the direction of Meppen-Bokeloh is on the program last day. In the historic “Alten Gasthaus Giese”, right by Hase, there is good German food. If you want, you can pick a few more apples from one of the 2500 apple trees that were planted 30 years ago along the Hasetal cycle path. Numerous “mouth robber benches” will make the “thieves” easier, and a ladder as a backrest protrudes into the treetops. This way, cyclists can take something healthy with them on the journey home and when they get hungry.

Travel information coming soon

The cycling holiday “by prescription” usually takes place between April and October from Sunday to Thursday. Providers come from Emsland, Rastede, Leer and Münster.

Claim: Before you book the health holiday “on prescription”, interested parties clarify with the health insurance company whether they subsidize the compact preventive courses far from home in accordance with § 20 SGB V. You can then book the date and destination for the cycling holiday “by prescription” and pay the total amount before you start travel. After the active holiday, the participants receive a certificate with which they can make up the subsidy for the prevention courses directly with health insurance. At least 80 percent of the course programs must be completed for reimbursement. The subsidy for the health programs of 150 euros may vary depending on the respective health insurance company.

Price example Haselünne: 5-day cycling holiday “on prescription”: € 425.00 less possible

Subsidies from health insurance: Prevention course autogenic training -75.00 €; Nutrition prevention course – € 75.00. More information: Tel. 05432/599599, e-mail: Internet: