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Authentic Sauna Blog

Is the Bucket Rinse about the best idea you’ve ever heard?

For many sauna enthusiasts, jumping into an ice cold lake after exiting a hot sauna is the pinnacle cool down experience. When is it time to leave the hot room? Clint: “When the idea of a cold lake plunge is about the best idea you’ve ever heard.

The euphoria is universal. In Finland, Russia, Minnesota and most every place where sauna is interwoven in the cultural fabric, the cold plunge is revered. Those digging cold plunge need not have to explain terms like thermogenesis, endorphin rush, homeostasis, and all that jazz. We emerge from the cold water and just say …. “ahhhh.” (and do it again!).

4700 in Minneapolis

“Collaboration requires several people to put their oars in the water” explains Rodney Burnsmith, a key co conspirator to the emerging urban sauna installation in South Minneapolis, Minnesota.

“What’s great about the empty canvas at 4700, is that others are coming forward, contributing to the urban sauna experience in their own way” notes Glenn Auerbach, fellow conspirator.

The bucket rinse

Darren, 612 Sauna Society Handy Man and fellow sauna enthusiast, has been tinkering with a bucket rinse for a couple months now. And after some welding and tinkering and toilet bowl tank hardware modifications, what was revealed during the recent Friday Happy Hour Sauna at 4700 Nicollet Ave. S. was, well, it was a big splash of a contribution.

“This is the first day in operation, and well, it seems to be working pretty well” explains a modest Darren (very Finnish).

The bucket rinse replicates that wonderful feeling you get when you dive into an ice cold lake. The bucket rinse is a celebration of freedom. Simplicity. Epigenetic’s and thermogenesis and Sauna Study measurements all wrapped up into one.

Are you benefiting from the clean rinse after every sauna round?

One tug of the cord and “wow” you will be.

The bucket rinse water element at 4700. Another reason to celebrate sauna in the urban public domain.

JP endorphin rushing between sauna rounds under the Bucket Rinse

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5 Comments on This Post

  1. Glen – My e mail does not seem to save files so I have, again lost the pictures that accompany your e book that I purchased. Can you pleassse resend the picture file? We just poured a concrete floor w/drain in my outdoor sauna. Been doing the electrical and now insulating. A few more steps and I can start putting up the cedar! Your book has been very helpful. Thanks, Tom

  2. Hi – I want to do this by putting a rain shower right in the sauna at the end opposite the rocks. Would that be ok? I have seen pictures of showers inside saunas but wasn’t sure if there is a reason NOT to do it. Or, I’m also thinking of putting a small soaking bathtub inside the sauna instead of the shower where I can run cold water for the plunge? Thank you.

  3. Hi Penny:

    This is a great question. Short answer: you can do it, but you have to be mindful of moisture.

    Longer answer: I prefer not to do this. Two reasons: First reason is to preserve your stove, especially electric. Excessive moisture in the hot room will take a toll on your sauna stove. Moisture is a funny thing. As a hot room cools, moisture will sit and condense on metal. Especially working its way into electrical components. My one wood burning sauna stove is 24 years old and shows zero signs of rust. Main reason is we practice the bake and breathe method for not only keeping the sauna clean, but it has the secondary benefit of drying out the hot room, and keeping stove dry.

    Second reason for not putting a shower in the hot room has to do with endorphin thermogenesis and all kinds of goodness that can occur in the garden all misty wet with rain, including the rubber band theory. Let’s consider just our skin and muscles and joints to start. As we sit in the hot room, our skin pores open, we sweat, flush our pores and this is very good for our skin. As we sit in the hot room, our muscles relax, expand, and we can stretch out. Same for achy joints. Because our blood circulates better and faster, and blood vessels expand, we are bringing attention and flow to our joints. Now, here’s the kicker, when we exit the hot room after a good sauna round, and seek out ice cold clean rinse, cool downs, our skin pores are flushed and close naturally. Our muscles contract (and feel great from this movement), our joints, especially those aching and stressed, contract, and we are known to break into a big smile as we reach for a cool beverage of joy.

    So, long answer to this is an outdoor shower may just end up being the gin to your tonic and the peanut butter to your jelly.

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