Sauna is becoming quite the buzz lately, thanks in great part to the work of Dr. Jari Laukkanen and media reports on his 25 year ongoing studies on the health benefits of sauna. With this reporting, many people are regulating their vitals with increasing regularity.: heart rate, pulse, blood pressure, and it’s never been easier thanks to technology in our pockets.
We had the pleasure visiting with Thomas about his new creation. Welcome Thomas to Saunatimes.
Hi Thomas, where are you from and when did you first start getting into sauna?
I am from Vienna, Austria. I tried sauna multiple times but never got hooked. It just happened earlier this year that I really started to enjoy it.
Tell us about the HotLog app. how does it work?
You enter sauna type, date, temperature, humidity and duration after each sauna session. Then the app can give you statistics about your average sessions/week and month, average duration, average temperature, and average humidity.
From where did you get the idea, and how long have you been working on it?
In the summer of 2018, I spent 3 weeks on the Outer Banks, NC in the USA with my girlfriend and her family. It was a wonderfully relaxing time – which it actually wasn’t supposed to be. One of the reasons we went there was for kite surfing. You know, that sport where you glide on the water solely powered by the wind. There was only one problem: we had no wind.
So I spend most of my time on Pocketcast exploring new podcasts. One of them was FoundMyFitness by Dr. Rhonda Patrick. When I listened to her interview with Dr. Jari Laukkanen, I got intrigued. Hitting the sauna several times a week really seems to increase your lifespan. Since our gym at home had a sauna, I thought, why not sweat a little more after each of my workouts?
This is when I started to go to the sauna or steam bath on a regular basis.
Soon I wanted to have an app to track my sessions so I see whether my sauna habits comply with the practice recommended by science. There was nothing. In addition, I wanted to do something more creative again – a project where I myself can decide when and how fast progress happens. And I wanted to work with great people. So I asked my friend Michael Paukner (the designer of HotLog) if he wants to join and he said “Yes!”
So I started coding. 4 months and 400 hours later we released HotLog on the iOS App Store.
What kind of people would be best using the app?
HotLog is for pretty much everybody who enjoys the sauna, steam bath, infrared, or hammam! Especially those who plan to use the sauna a certain number of times per week or month. For them HotLog is the go-to tool to track their sauna sessions.
Any future thoughts / ideas for sauna enthusiasts to be on the look out for?
HotLog will get multiple new features over the next years. It mostly depends on the needs of the community. If we see that people enjoy the tracking, we’ll add more fun to that (like badges for example). If we see that there is more interest from science or sauna operators, we’ll go more into that direction. Either way, there is more to come in the app.
Besides the app we’re open for collaborations to support the sauna lovers community around the world – in any way.