Massage With Sauna – Is it Better Before or After?

Massage is a classic that will provide you with all the relaxation you need, and when coupled with the sauna, it can provide you with amplified benefits of both. But is it better to use the sauna before or after a massage?

The heat from a sauna helps to soften muscle tissues, which is one of the reasons you are likely to feel relaxed afterward. Because of this, it is better to schedule your massage session for after your sauna visit because your body will be relaxed to start with, allowing your masseuse to work your muscles deeper than they would otherwise.

Keep reading for more information about the best time to get your massage in relation to your sauna and why.

Is it better to have a massage before or after the sauna?

Whether you visit a sauna before or after your massage, you are sure to get health benefits, but those health benefits will depend on your usage schedule. 

Enjoying a massage after using the sauna may be better because laying in a sauna before a massage means you’ll arrive for the massage with your body relaxed and open to receiving deeper work than normal. Your muscles will be warm and ready for stretching and tension relief. 

However, a massage before a sauna also has its benefits. You can enjoy additional detoxification benefits of the massage will also help get rid of accumulated toxins and waste in your body.

Really, there is no wrong way to combine the sauna and a massage. They both have amazing health benefits and are relaxing for the spirit, mind, and body. 

What order do spas schedule sauna and massage?

Most spas offer a two-hour session consisting of sauna sessions, showers, steaming, and massage. 

The typical spa menu order is:

  • Rising in a temperature shower
  • Steaming in a steam room for about 6 minutes
  • A cold shower
  • The sauna session 
  • Massage

The cold showers and sauna sessions are usually repeated 3-4 times.

What kind of sauna should you pair with massage?

Whether you want to relax, tighten loose muscles, or treat an injury, it is important to use the sauna before your massage treatment. Spending just 10 to 15 minutes in a sauna can help with all the warming up and stretching you need before the massage. 

To get the best benefits from a sauna before a massage, you should visit an infrared sauna. This type of sauna is known for detoxifying the body by heating the body’s core at a cellular level where most body toxins are stored. These are two key factors in easing body pain. 

Infrared saunas are known for heating the body and producing detoxifying sweat rather than simply warming the air.

An infrared sauna also aids the production of white blood cells, which reduces swelling and alleviates inflammation. The infrared sauna ensures that your muscles are pliable, softened, and ready for a massage treatment to get the best benefits.

Using an infrared sauna will give the body a head start by getting rid of toxins and other waste products from the body before your massage treatment. 

Traditional sauna and massage

Fewer toxins in the skin lead to healthier skin with improvement in skin elasticity, texture, tone, complexion, and overall appearance. A traditional sauna can help to get rid of body toxins, reduce muscle spasms, and help in the natural healing of the body.

Cleansing your body with a traditional sauna before the massage session can help get rid of body toxins which in turn helps prevent illness, relieve symptoms, and increase overall vitality. Traditional saunas also provide heat that penetrates the tissues, muscles, and joints speeding up the flow of oxygen. 

The temperature in a traditional sauna is typically between 180° and 190°F, and, due to that high temperature, it is advised not to spend too much time in it.

Spending too much time in a traditional sauna can lead to dehydration which can lead to low blood pressure and even make you pass out.

Ensure you do not spend more than 15 minutes at once, take temperature shower breaks and drink a lot of water before, during, and after the session. 

Infrared sauna and massage

Infrared light is the invisible part of the sun’s spectrum, and it can penetrate body tissues and give a lot of health benefits. It is naturally occurring from the sun and is the basis of technology used in infrared saunas. 

You can take advantage of the heat from the sauna to loosen any muscle tension before your massage. You can also start the breakdown of harmful lactic acid in your muscles and tissues. This way, you have effectively started and paved the way to an effective massage session.

The infrared light from an infrared sauna also has a lot of anti-aging health benefits due to its ability to penetrate body tissues. By increasing the flow of blood and oxygen, heat from a sauna before your massage session will help relieve pain to sore areas of the body and muscle inflamed joints.

The temperature in an infrared sauna is typically between 120°F and 140°F. Infrared saunas are generally safe and have no side effects, but there are some potential risks if not used properly.

Misusing the infrared sauna or not taking in enough water can lead to dizziness, overheating, and dehydration.

Steam room and massage

Stress is one of the leading causes of many physical and psychological health conditions. A steam room provides therapeutic heat that can help you ease your muscles, relieve stress, and provide relaxation.

In contrast, a massage session can help deal with stress and relax by lowering the heart rate, releasing endorphins, and relaxing muscles. 

Steaming before a massage session will ensure increased blood flow and aid in circulation. It can also help reduce pain. Heating muscles in a steam room leads to an increase in blood flow, similar to exercise. This has a lot of health benefits as it improves the circulation of oxygen and other body nutrients. 

Massage is a wonderful way to boost your immune system and stimulate the removal of metabolic wastes and toxins. A steam room also deals with detoxification and strengthening of the immune system.

A steam room before or after a massage allows toxins to exit the body via sweat. It also stimulates the circulatory system, causing faster heartbeat rate and dilation of blood vessels which helps fully oxygenate body cells and cleanse the circulatory system.

Better blood and oxygen circulation means that more toxins will flow from the cellular level to the surface of the skin and help strengthen the immune system, aid recovery of muscles, and improve cell health. 

The temperature in an infrared sauna is typically between 100°F and 120°F. Staying in a steam room for more than 15 minutes can lead to dehydration. Dehydration in some cases can lead to more severe health conditions.