4 Sauna Safety Tips for Beginners

Whether it’s at a professional health spa or at home, a sauna offers a variety of major health benefits. Despite the many benefits, it also comes with its share of dangers. Below are 4 of the most important safety tips to keep in mind.

Image Source: Flickr

Image Source: Flickr

Drink Plenty of Water
You will be sweating heavily in a sauna, so be sure to drink plenty. Water is probably best for you, but beer and cider is what Finns enjoy the most. Roasting sausages either on open fire or in tin foil directly on the stove is another key part of the sauna experience. Source: VisitFinland

Skip the Creams, Lotions, and Jewelry
Metal heats up fast in saunas, so while you might go in looking fashionable, you’ll leave with painful burns. If you have any jewelry, take it off, and put it in a safe place. Do not take it into the sauna with you. You also don’t want to wear any creams or lotions. If they don’t run with your sweat and make an oily mess, they will clog up your pores and keep your skin from breathing and sweating. Source: WikiHow

Wait an Hour After a Meal
Saunas increase the flow of nutrients (glucose, amino acids, fatty acids, and oxygen) via the circulatory system. While it may seem like the perfect time to be pulling in more via digestion, the reality is that digestion gets put on the back burner while the circulatory system ramps up nutrient delivery to the muscle and skin. For that reason, it’s best not to eat a heavy meal right before stepping into a sauna. If I’m hungry I opt for a light snack, then eat when my session is over. Source: MommyPotamus

Don’t Go Too Hot
For a far infrared sauna , most people set the temperature for anywhere between 100-140 degrees. If you are a beginner, and particularly if you are not in great health, you’ll want to start at 100 degrees or less. This way you’ll give yourself a chance to get used to the heat.
It’s okay to get into an infrared sauna 10-15 min. after you’ve turned it on, even if the temperature is not up to your target temperature yet.
It doesn’t take longer than that for infrared sauna heaters to warm up, and once they do, you’ll be getting the infrared heat effect. The infrared-emitting heaters will be on continuously until the heat gets up to the temperature you set.
For a traditional sauna, most people set the temperature for anywhere between 160-200 degrees (come back for our upcoming Finnish saunas page). In this case, you’ll probably want to wait until you’re within 5-10 degrees of the temperature you’ve set it at to get the full effect throughout your whole home dry sauna session.
Remember that heat rises, so choose whether to sit on an upper or lower bench (or change positions) accordingly. Source: The-Infrared-Sauna-Effect

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Calgary, Alberta
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