Any time you’ve ever opened a gym membership, you’ve probably noticed their list of perks.
Fitness classes! Movement therapy! Tanning beds! Free swimming pool! A sauna!
Wait—a sauna? Why would anyone want to go to a sauna and sweat . . . after sweating?
Have you ever wondered what the sauna benefits really are, and why you should consider making a stop in that heated room before heading home and cooling off in the shower?
We understand your concerns, and we’re here to answer them! Keep reading.
1. Simple Yet Significant Stress Relief
Let’s learn more about heat therapy by starting with a mental benefit: much-needed stress relief.
If you’ve ever noticed a positive shift in your mood after a hot yoga class, a hot stone massage, or a hot tub experience, then you’re already familiar with those feel-good vibes. Sometimes, the recipe for feeling less stressed, depressed, or anxious is a simple one: heat.
When we experience short bursts of elevated body temperature, also known as hyperthermia, we also experience the effects of an anti-depressant. In a study of individuals with major depression, their depression scores reduced by 50% after five days of a single hyperthermia treatment.
It’s worth noting that prolonged time in a sauna isn’t enough to ward off depression for longer. Only use the sauna for a safe, smart amount of time per use.
2. The Power of Enhanced Circulation
Because of the change in heart rate, sauna benefits also cross over into circulation. Improved circulation then translates into pain relief and muscle recovery. One thing bleeds into another, providing an overall positive experience for sauna-goers!
The heart rate generally increases, and blood vessels also widen. Because of this, circulation, or blood flow, improves. In saunas, which are known as “dry heat,” it’s best to keep the temperatures on the warmer side rather than the extremely hot side.
3. Improved Muscle Recovery
In addition to improved circulation and mind state, saunas are fantastic for speeding up muscle recovery and providing relief to sore muscles.
A temperature increase can provide a soothing feeling when the body experiences discomfort. It can also improve muscle flexibility, contributing to a faster recovery after an injury, intense workout, or general stiffness or pain. Not only do muscles relax and become soothed during heat therapy, but damaged tissue can also be healed.
Tension or stiffness typically starts to go away after about 15 to 20 minutes. If your pain is more severe, a longer session might help—but again, keep note of any adverse side effects and try not to stay in the sauna for too long. Always consult with your doctor if you have any concerns or pre-existing medical issues.
These Sauna Benefits Have Us Feeling Hot
So, the next time you finish a session and are about to pack up your gym bag and head for the door, reconsider.
Those four heated walls contain tons of advantages. Now that you’ve read the astounding sauna benefits, you can rest assured you’re getting something out of it besides a few droplets of sweat.
While you’re feeling motivated, go ahead and give it a try! And when it times to relax, come back to our blog and see what other fascinating things you can learn.
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