Etiquette 1

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Sauna Etiquette

How to bathe in a traditional Finnish Sauna

There are actually no rules, only guidelines, about how to bath in a sauna.

Sauna is the place for cleaning both body and mind. It is also a place to get away from the stresses of the world.

Before you enter the sauna you should start by taking a shower. It both helps keeping the sauna clean and makes you more comfortable in the heat.

Usually one should be naked in the sauna, but if you want you can wear a bathing suit or wrap a towel around you (this is not a breach of any etiquette). It is important to know that there is no erotic meaning in a sauna. In many cases men and women take turns to bathe separately.

On entering the sauna you can either sit on the upper or lower benches. The upper benches are hotter, so move to the lower benches if you find it too hot. Use a small towel to sit on.

Stay in the sauna as long as you feel comfortable. A typical sauna session will last about 15-30 minutes, with a cool down interval by taking a shower or maybe sitting awhile in the open air – followed by a second, third or as many sauna sessions that you like.

Finally taka a shower and clean yourself from the sweat. Follow the sauna with a peaceful rest and a drink.


There is no perfect sauna temperature that is suitable for everyone. Some like it very hot (80-100oC); others prefer the moderate heat (50-60oC).

By throwing some water on the rocks on the heater you increase the humidity in the sauna. The steam also raises the temperature. This will cause you to sweat even more.

Sauna and health

Saunas are considered healthy as they open the pores on your skin and by sweating help your body to remove toxins and other impurities from within the body and blood.

The warm steam helps blood flow resume effectively in all parts of the body and contracted muscles are relieved.

The more you can sweat the better your body get rid of toxins and improve general circulation.

As the body gets cleansed and muscles are relieved, you can experience freshness in mood and health.

The warm moist in saunas is also beneficial for lungs. The medical properties of steam are that it proves to be of help in treating flue, bronchitis etc.

If you are reasonably healthy, you can bath in a sauna as often as you like.

Regular sauna bath provides mental and physical relaxation. This can also help people with sleeping disorder to sleep better.

You can also burn a lot of calories in just one sauna session. It is said that 15-20 minutes of sauna is almost equivalent to 1 hour of exercise.


Remember to take cooling down breaks, because prolonged exposure to the heat is not good.

If you have a medical condition, you must check with a doctor if you are uncertain how sauna bathing will affect your condition.

Pregnant women should avoid sauna bath.

Avoid drinking too much alcohol during sauna bathing.

People suffering from cardiac and cardiovascular conditions should avoid entering a sauna.