Everyone knows about the traditional Finnish cedar sauna, but not everyone knows about the Japanese sauna.
The original name of the Japanese cedar sauna is Ofuro. It is not similar to saunas from other parts of the world, as it evolved on its own, without the influence of any other type of sauna. The basis of the Japanese sauna is hot water, not hot air like different types of saunas. The water is heated to a temperature of 45 degrees. Japanese tradition is that the Ofuro sauna is taken every evening before dinner.
Modern saunas Ofuro
Modern saunas in Japan are divided into:
- Home saunas Ofuro;
- Public saunas Sento.
A Japanese home modern sauna looks like a cedar barrel or font filled with hot water (45 degrees). You will see that seats allow you to be inside in a half-upright position if you look inside. There are also certain precautions to avoid heatstroke:
- It is necessary to wear a wet headdress soaked in cold water on your head.
- There are also restrictions on the duration of the sauna; you have to stay inside for no more than 10 minutes.
Before you begin, you must put on a hat. Next, you must sit inside and assume a half-upright position on a special bench inside the barrel. Then, after 10 minutes, you need to dry the heated body. Next, it would be best to wrap yourself in a robe or other terry clothes, and then you can rest. Actually, this process of relaxing and lying on the couch after the sauna session is called the Japanese sauna.
Let’s keep in mind the kind of public Japanese Sento saunas, as many Japanese prefer them. The traditional Santo public sauna is a kind of big wooden font or barrel. Today the modern version is becoming more popular. It looks like a swimming pool with running water, suitable for 6-8 people. It rather resembles a huge bathtub in its look. Moreover, a public sauna is a fairly large room with good ventilation and airing. Based on these factors, we can conclude that heat and clean air are the main advantages of the Japanese sauna.
It is also worth noting that the Japanese home sauna Ofuro is Japan’s most valuable and healing ritual. Because it is based on medicinal herbs and other healthful ingredients. For example, in preparing a Japanese homemade sauna for “Ofuro,” you can take wood, cedar sawdust, leaves, or more than 50 kinds of aromatic and medicinal herbs. These medicinal mixtures are heated up to 60 degrees Celsius and spread out on a bench. Then all you need to do is immerse yourself in this aromatic and fragrant mixture and enjoy the steam.
Medicine has proven that the Japanese bath is beneficial for:
- Cardiovascular diseases;
- The sauna also can relieve back pain;
- The sauna helps to control rheumatism.
Japanese bathing also helps normalize the body’s metabolism and relieves stress. Furthermore, due to sufficiently high temperatures in the homemade sauna, the procedure will remove any harmful substances, toxins, and impurities from the body. In addition, the quality of skin significantly improves, too: it becomes smoother, and its elasticity also increases.