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Sweat Smarter: Should You Sauna Before or After a Workout?

When it comes to maximizing the benefits of your workout routine, incorporating regular sauna sessions can be a valuable addition. However, the question often arises: should you sauna before or after a workout? Let's explore the advantages and considerations around whether you should sauna before or after a workout for optimal benefit.

Should You Sauna Before or After a Workout?

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Is It Good to Sauna Before a Workout?

Using the sauna before your workout can warm up muscles, lessen stiffness, and reduce injury risk, particularly useful if you're recovering from an injury or surgery. It gently kick-starts your cardiovascular and circulatory systems, priming you for the workout ahead.

However, a sauna's pre-workout use has implications. The heat warms your muscles but also raises your body temperature, triggering a cooling response that might leave you feeling relaxed or fatigued, which isn't ideal for an intense workout. A sauna also doesn't offer the full muscle engagement and range of motion a traditional warmup does.

So, if your primary focus is maximizing workout performance, consider other methods like pre-workout ice baths or standard warmup exercises. They can better prepare your muscles for an intensive workout.

So, when is the best time to sauna? Based on the evidence, post-exercise sauna bathing offers a variety of health benefits that are hard to pass up. Read on to learn the benefits of saunas after a workout.

What Does the Sauna Do After a Workout? 6 Benefits To Consider


Is the Sauna Good After a Workout?

1. Ease Muscle Discomfort & Enhance Recovery

A post-workout sauna session aids in muscle recovery by relaxing and soothing your tired muscles. The increased blood flow triggered by heat exposure helps flush out metabolic waste products and replenishes your muscles with vital nutrients. The intense heat also triggers heat shock proteins that help reduce inflammatory damage and support the muscle regeneration process, helping to curb delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).

2. Boost Blood Flow and Heart Health

With the heat shock response initiated and an increased level of oxygen and nutrient-rich blood pumping throughout your body, a sauna session following your workout is also going to help improve cardiovascular function, in turn helping protect against hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. Of course, this is also true with consistent sauna use, and when following specific deliberate heat exposure protocols for cardiovascular health.

3. Stimulate Growth Hormone Release

Post-workout sauna time has been proven to stimulate the release of human growth hormone (HGH). This hormone plays a pivotal role in muscle growth, bone strength, tissue repair, and metabolism. Research indicates that sauna heat can trigger HGH release, potentially boosting its levels up to 16 times when following specific sauna protocols for growth hormone release.

4. Enhance Exercise Performance

With the various benefits listed above, it’s no surprise that sauna bathing following exercise can help improve your exercise performance. A three-week study investigating the impact of sauna bathing on exercise capacity in hot and humid conditions found that post-exercise sauna use is not only an effective tool for improving athletic performance, endurance, and recovery but also an effective method of heat acclimation.

5. Boost Your Calorie-Burning Potential

One of the biggest benefits of sauna use is its ability to mimic low-grade cardio exercise. That’s why it's best to sauna after your workout, keeping your heart rate elevated, and boosting your calorie-burning capacity.

6. Set the Stage for Restorative Sleep

Sleep is a pivotal recovery tool for athletes and non-athletes alike. Aside from relaxing the muscles and mind, post-exercise sauna bathing ignites the body’s natural cool-down response and the release of the hormone melatonin—a vital component to successfully falling and staying asleep. By incorporating a sauna session after your workout and in the few hours before your bedtime, you can set yourself up for a restful, restorative night’s sleep.


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Based on the evidence, it’s easy to see that incorporating a sauna session into your post-workout routine can help you recover, rejuvenate, and reset—preparing you for your next workout session and beyond.

No matter your fitness aspirations—be it achieving peak health or gearing up for a major event, Sweat Tent is the world’s most powerful, portable, affordable home sauna tent that can help you achieve your goals. Experience enhanced recovery, boosted longevity, and elevated fitness performance, all without straining your wallet or sacrificing quality.

For more benefits and how-tos of sauna use, visit the blog. See Sweat Tent in action on Instagram (@sweattents), or share your own experiences with us using the hashtag #sweattent!

Medical disclaimer: This post is intended for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your doctor before adding sauna bathing to your health and wellness routine.

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