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Heat Therapy

What is Heat Therapy?

Each type of heat therapy works by generating an artificial fever and by pulling the blood to the surface of the skin. During the process, your body is allowed to relax, open up and be more receptive to treatments like massage.   Further, toxins, such as alcohol and food preservatives, are brought to the surface of the skin and sweat out.

Heat Therapy Benefits

  • Strengthens cardiovascular system and increases circulation
  • Relaxes muscles and speeds recovery from injuries
  • Rids body of impurities and boosts the immune system
  • Improves skin tone and texture
  • Increases metabolic process
  • Reduces stress

Heat Therapy Guidelines and Precautions

Before considering any heat therapy, speak with your doctor to be sure that it is appropriate for you. Here are some general guidelines to follow:

Before Heat Therapy During Heat Therapy After Heat Therapy
  • Eat lightly: If you have had a full meal, let several hours pass before
  • Hydrate: Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration and to keep your core cool
  • Shower: To remove surface toxins and lotions from skin
  • Protect: Bring a towel to protect against hot surfaces and germs, to have something to wipe off sweat and to keep space clean
  • Rinse: Leave periodically (every 10-15 minutes) to cool down in a cold plunge pool or shower. This rinses toxins off and stimulates the thyroid and metabolism
  • Be Safe: If at any point you feel weak, dizzy or nauseous, stop immediately
  • Hydrate: Replace lost fluids with lots of water (12 oz. per 15 minutes in heat)
  • Replenish: Fresh fruit’s sugars can easily be absorbed into the bloodstream
  • Relax: Take at least 10 minutes to relax and allow your system to return to normal

Types of Heat Therapy

Type Descripton and Process / Experience
Hamman / Turkish Bath
Hammam / Turkish Bath
What is Hammam or a Turkish Bath? Hammam is important in Middle-Eastern culture for social gathering and cleansing.  They combine steam, body treatments and massage into one experience. It has functionality and architecture of Roman thermae and Byzantine baths, with Central Asian Turkish tradition of steam bathing, ritual cleansing and respect for water.General duration:
1 – 1 1/2 hours


  1. Enter: Greeted by an attendant, you are given a pestemal (cotton or silk wrap), a pair of nalin (wooden clogs) and a key to a cubicle to store your belongings
  2. Change: Undress in the camekan and wrap the pestemal around you
  3. Pre-Shower: Shower prior to entering the hottest room
  4. Detox: Apply clay to your body to draw out impurities
  5. Steam: Relax in the hot and steamy sicaklik
  6. Rinse: Rinse off the clay
  7. Exfoliation: On the goebektas (a heated marble slab in the center of the hot room), the tellak (bath attendant) roughly exfoliates you with a kese (coarse mitt made of goat’s hair) to remove dead skin cells
  8. Wash: You are soaped up and rinsed off in the warm room
  9. Massage: You are massaged on the goebektas
  10. Cool down: Relax in the sogukluk to cool down and rehydrate
  11. Dress: Redress and leave

Typically there are three interconnected rooms:

  • The sicaklik: A room with a large dome decorated with small glass windows. The goebektas (a large marble stone) sits at the center and niches with fountains sit in the corners. Used for soaking up steam and getting scrub massages
  • The warm room: Used for washing with soap and water
  • The sogukluk: Where you relax, dress up, have a refreshing drink and nap in private cubicles after the massage


What is Traditional Sauna? Originated in 5th or 6th Century Finland, saunas were were dug into a hill or embankment until later when they were built above ground using wooden logs. Also called rock saunas or Finnish Saunas, various types of heaters warm the air in a room made or lined with wood material. Fist sized Peridotite stones are arranged over the heat source, attaining and maintaining high temperatures. The rocks are periodically splashed with water to generate humidity.What is Modern Sauna? Thermostatically controlled electric stoves or wood stoves with chimneys, reaching up to 175 degrees, while smoke saunas can reach up to 200 degrees.

Allowable duration and frequency:
15 – 20 minute intervals; 2 – 3x per week


  1. Shower: Clean off dirt
  2. Sit ‘n’ Soak: Find a comfortable spot to sit and relax. The heat is most intense on the upper levels. To add moisture to the air throw water on the stones
  3. Break and Rinse: Step out of the sauna and cool down with a cold shower, drinking water, or a cold plunge
  4. Repeat: Step back into the sauna and repeat steps 2 and 3 as many times as you like
  5. Final Rinse: Take a final shower to wash away the sweat and cool down completely
Far Infrared (FIR) Sauna What is Far Infrared Sauna (FIR)? Originated in Fuji in 1965 by Dr. Tadashi Ishikawa, of the Research and Development Department of Fuji Medical.  FIR uses electromagnetic radiation to heat you from the inside out, heating you more deeply than traditional Finnish sauna. The radiant energy is the same as the heat from the sun, only without the harmful ultraviolet rays.Allowable duration and frequency:
20 – 40 minutes per day;Best if taken first thing in the morning or last thing before bed


  1. Shower: Helps increase the amount you sweat
  2. Sit ‘n’ Soak: Find a comfortable spot to sit and relax. The closer you are to the infrared coils, the better the penetration of the IR energy
  3. Cool down and Rinse: When you are done, take a cool shower to wash away the sweat and cool down
  4. Rest: For at least 15 minutes, relax in the shower or with other relaxation techniques
Steam Bath

Steam Bath / Steam Shower

What is a Steam Bath? Originated in Ancient Greece and Rome.  It is similar to sauna, but with steam (or mist). Temperatures are most effective between 43C (110F) and 46C (116F).Allowable duration and frequency:
15 – 20 minute intervals; 2 – 3x per week


  1. Shower: Clean off dirt
  2. Sit ‘n’ Soak: Find a comfortable spot to sit and relax. Note that the heat is most intense on the upper levels
  3. Cool down and Rinse: Cool off completely with cool fresh air or cool water
  4. Repeat: Step back into the steam room and repeat steps 2 and 3 up to 2 to 3 times
  5. Final Rinse: Take a final shower to wash away the sweat and let yourself cool down completely
Sweat Lodges / Temazcal What is a Sweat Lodge or Temazcal? An important ritual done by the Native and Meso-American cultures as a healing and spiritual journey to clear the mind and cleanse the body. Depending on the tribe, different styles and construction is used, however, with most, stones are heated in an exterior fire and then placed in a central pit in the ground. Often the stones are granite or volcanic rock that glow red in the dark lodge.General Duration and Frequency:
Varies from tribe to tribe, region to region and family to family, however, most last from 2 to 4 hours and include 4 rounds, with each being hotter than the previous.


  1. Ceremonial Gathering: The participants encircle the stone pit inside the lodge. The Shaman or leader may bless you or have you say a prayer
  2. Stones: Each round, the leader of the ceremony receives the glowing hot stones from the firekeeper and places them in the pit
  3. Sweat: The leader closes the door, sealing off all light and keeping in the heat. He pours water (sometimes with herbs) on top of the stones to fill the lodge with steam. Each round can last for periods of ten minutes to an hour within the lodge
  4. Slather: Some types may have you slather mud, honey or aloe vera onto your skin
  5. Rhythm: Drums or maracas keep rhythm for group chants and prayers
  6. Rinse: After leaving the hut, take a cold shower or jump into the sea to rinse toxins.

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