In previous posts we’ve talked about the healing qualities of a hot bath and wooden hot tubs benefits. But Westerners weren’t always so conscious of the benefits of a good soak and bathing in hot tub.

The material was mostly inspired by the following article:

Sure, bathing was all the rage in the ancient world. Back then it often had a religious significance.

Ancient bathing in hot tubs on the West and on the East

Ancient Indians bathed three times daily for hygiene reasons, as stipulated in the immortal Grihya Sutras which outline important domestic rituals. The ancient Greeks were well acquainted with bathtubs, wash basins and foot baths. Both the Greeks and the Romans are remembered for their public baths.

Japanese bathing culture has ancient provenance too. There it derives from the country’s natural bounty- the great number of natural hot springs. Before the 7th century these were probably the main spots for bathing, before the arrival of Buddhism and the construction of bathhouses for monks’ temples. These bathhouses soon became open to the wider public.

In the European middle ages, bathing tended to take place in public bathhouses.

Decadence of bathing in Europe

During the Renaissance and the Protestant Reformation, however, the practice started to decline.

The belief that the quality of one’s clothing reflected the purity of one’s soul became commonplace, replacing an earlier emphasis on bodily cleanliness. As a result of this, bathing went out of fashion in Europe right the way up to the end of the 1700s.

Fashion to clean body comes back

In the 19th century the health benefits of bathing began to be recognized once again. This new awareness came with the hydropathy movement and a positive flurry of scientific works began to promote clean water as the cure for almost every disease. Bathing was back.

Fast forward to the Victorian era and a stringent cult of cleanliness has established cultural dominance. But our debt to this tradition should not make us forget the broader benefits of bathing- as a form of relaxation, recreation, even a form of socialising, and as a benefit to one’s physical and mental health.

Ancient cultures grasped this broader value of bathing, beyond material hygiene alone.

Nowadays usage of Hot tubs

Nowadays we have a rich bathing culture, which draws from West and East alike. Today, hot tubs are at the forefront of promoting bathing as a recreational activity rather than just a means of washing. For the Japanese, the traditional bath called an ofuro hot tub is used primarily for relaxation. The user tends to shower before using the ofuro, so that they are clean when they get in. As can be seen by the ofuro-inspired hot tubs for sale on our site, we too believe that bathing will always be about more than just hygiene.

Wood fired 2 seat ofuro wooden hot tub

Wood fired 2 seat ofuro wooden hot tub

Embrace a rich human heritage by investing in a wooden hot tub today.

Check out our wooden hot tubs here: