Let’s revisit something significant.
Consider that when:
- bicycling with a friend in Amsterdam, it is perfectly reasonable to say “hey, you wanna go for a few rounds at Sauna Deco?”
- walking with a friend outside on a super hot humid day, it is perfectly reasonable to say “man, it feels like a sauna out here, let’s go grab a beer.”
- sitting on the sauna bench with a friend, it is perfectly reasonable to say “mind if I hit some water on the sauna rocks?”
- Sitting with a friend in a Jacuzzi or hot tub it is not correct to say “man, this sauna is bubbly.” Why? because it is not a sauna.
- Laying on a tanning bed for whatever reason, it’s not correct to turn to whoever may be there and say “these sauna rays are making my skin orange.” Why? because it is not a sauna.
- Sitting alone in a 4 foot closet lined with wood with red light bulbs, it is definitely not correct to announce “Check out my new infrared sauna!” Why? because it is not a sauna. (note definition above).
Why is this important?
- The clinical studies that report on the health benefits of sauna are based on participants partaking in sauna. Not hot tubs. Not tanning beds. Not infrared light bulb closets.
- Sauna is a centuries old tradition that, as an integral part of the practice, involves introducing water onto hot sauna stones to create steam. Without this, it is not a sauna.
- Other methods of inducing sweat may be awesome, and great, but they are not sauna if they don’t have a decent heater that heat rocks and allow for steam from tossing water on sauna stones. Light bulbs cannot make a sauna, unless they can heat rocks hot enough to make steam.
There are other nuances that are critical for creating a great sauna. (ventilation, bench height, type of heater, etc.). We can get into those later. But what is important right now is that we start with what is a sauna and what is not a sauna.