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Bill Brown
Jun 27, 2018

7 Benefits of Using a Steam Room After a Workout

Entering a sweat-inducing steam room after perspiring on the treadmill doesn’t seem exactly pleasant, but you might want to consider doing just that. Exercise gives your body and mind so many amazing health benefits, but you can compound those benefits by visiting a steam room right afterwards. Let’s learn a bit more!

First: Are Steam Rooms and Saunas the Same?

Many people use the terms steam room and sauna interchangeably, although they are slightly different. Steam rooms and saunas both heat the body for relaxation and health benefits, but with one major difference – humidity. Steam rooms heat the body using moist, humid air. They usually boast 100 percent humidity. Temperatures range from 100 °F to 114 °F.

Saunas use dry air, with a lower humidity of between 5 to 30 percent. Temperatures in saunas are typically hotter than steam rooms, usually in the range of 160 °F to 200 °F. Many health benefits are shared between these two methods of heat-immersion bathing..

Here are just some of the many benefits of using a steam room after a workout:

Relieve Tired Muscles

Working out can sometimes lead to tired muscles, especially if you push yourself to do exercises your body isn’t used to. Heat therapy has long been used to sooth sore muscles. A steam room is like using a heat pack on your whole body. A study from the University of Jyväskylä, Finland, showed that steam rooms and saunas can help athletes recover from strength and endurance training.1A Japanese study found that heat bathing also effectively helped patients diagnosed with chronic pain.2

Feel More Relaxed

Modern life is full of stress. Work, family demands, technology, and excessive worrying can take a toll on your mental and physical health. Exercise is a great way to relieve some of that stress. Using a steam room after exercising can help you relieve even more stress by putting you into a state similar to meditation. Some steam room advocates even say visiting a steam room helps them sleep better at night by making them more relaxed during the day.

Increase Athletic Performance

A New Zealand study demonstrated how the use of heat bathing can help athletic performance.3 The study focused on male long-distance runners, who used a sauna after their workouts. The next day, they were tested to see how long they could run on a treadmill. The participants increased the amount of time they could run by 32 percent after using the sauna.

Lose Weight

Although visiting a steam room can lead to a small amount of weight loss, it should be noted that this loss is usually from fluids. A study conducted in a dry sauna found that sedentary students had Body Mass Loss (BML) when visiting the sauna for two 10-minute sessions.4 Be sure to properly hydrate after working out, as well as after visiting a steam room.

For a Healthy Heart

Several studies have shown that a steam room visit is beneficial to heart health. A study conducted on men in Finland found that heat bathing protected study participants from fatal heart problems such as Sudden Cardiac Death, Fatal Cardiovascular Disease and Fatal Coronary Heart Disease.

Breathe More Clearly

Steam baths can open up your sinuses to help you breathe. This is very helpful for people who have colds or certain medical conditions, such as asthma and chronic bronchitis. Researchers think this may be due to increased pulmonary functioning. However, doctors recommend not using steam rooms and saunas if you have a respiratory infection.

For Beautiful, Healthy Skin

Steam rooms have long been touted as beneficial to skin care. They are especially helpful after a workout to open and cleanse pores. Steam rooms are also good for your skin because they increase blood flow and circulation, which can give your skin a youthful, healthy glow.

How Long Should You Stay in a Steam Room?

Relax in your gym’s steam room for no more than 30 minutes per visit. But if you feel any sort of discomfort, leave. Many people find just 10 minutes in a steam room helps them feel relaxed for the rest of the day. Make sure to drink plenty of water since sweating can dehydrate you.

Your gym has a steam room because heat bathing and exercise go hand in hand. Experience the benefits of a steam bath after your workout to feel your healthiest and most relaxed.

Article by: Dr. Edison de Mello at ACTIVATEDYOU

The Arena District Athletic Club is more than just a gym, it’s a premier fitness facility located in the heart of the Arena District in downtown Columbus. We provide convenience and quality, featuring top-of-the-line equipment, top-notch personal trainers, spa-like locker rooms and a wide variety of free group fitness classes daily including Cardio, Spinning, Barre Fusion, Yoga, Boot Camp and more. We offer free 2-hour parking and convenient contract-free memberships, to fit your healthy lifestyle needs. Don’t just join, belong.



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