Being a professional fighter can be a grueling task to stay in shape, train, and eat the exact foods they need for their diet. The recovery process is just as crucial as the workout for most athletes, making portable saunas an incredibly useful and efficient way to recuperate on the go. Is there a specific portable sauna preferred by UFC fighters?
UFC fighters may spend time in a steam room in order to sweat out water weight before weighing in. Infrared saunas are the best choice for optimizing recovery after an intense training session or a big fight. Both sauna types are available in portable options such as the Durasage (steam sauna) or the Higher Dose (infrared sauna) for on-the-go use.
Keep reading to find out what types of saunas work best for UFC fighters and why. We’ve also included a couple of portable sauna options for traveling fighters.
Why do UFC fighters use sauna?
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fighters are professional mixed martial artists. Like all other professional athletes, they train extensively almost every day; unlike many professional athletes, their sport requires direct and intense physical assault on their bodies. It’s no wonder many UFC fighters spend time in the sauna!
UFC fighters use both steam rooms and infrared saunas in their regular routines. Steam rooms are used in order to remove water weight before weighing in. Infrared saunas are ideal for recovery after a training session or match. Both saunas can be good for physical therapy or injury recovery.
While the typical benefits of a steam sauna are no doubt appreciated by top athletes, the primary use will be to drop as many pounds as possible before weighing in. This may sound like cheating to meet lower weight class requirements, but it’s standard procedure to ensure everyone is on an even playing field. In fact, fighters are given 24 hours to rehydrate before the match and a doctor can pull the fighter for health concerns if he’s not properly rehydrated.
Infrared saunas, on the other hand, are typically used because of their traditional benefits, including detoxification, muscle relaxation and recovery, and improved quality of sleep.
Want to know all the differences between a steam room and an infrared sauna? Check out this article!
What type of sauna do UFC fighters use?
The types of saunas UFC fighters use can vary from person to person, but there are some that fighters prefer.
Infrared saunas are a popular choice among UFC fighters. They optimize recovery and help fulfill their training regime.
That said, fighters have many reasons for using a sauna or steam room. And the benefits of each will differ for the type of treatment they need.
Here are some examples of times a UFC fighter would use a specific type of sauna:
- Fighters may use a steam room to eliminate as much water weight as possible in order to meet the weight class requirements at the time of weigh-in.
- Injured fighters may visit a steam room for treatment in order to expedite recovery.
- Fighters may use an infrared sauna to relax and allow for muscle recovery after a long day of training.
Basically, fighters may have a personal preference regarding which sauna works best for them or they enjoy more, but they will make use of whichever one offers the most immediate professional benefit.
Is portable sauna effective for MMA fighters?
The use of saunas for MMA fighters is very popular and a great supplement to their training.
A portable sauna can be effective for MMA fighters when they’re traveling between fights to ensure their health is in the best condition possible; however, some portable saunas (especially steam saunas) may not get hot enough to provide the desired benefits.
The American College of Sports Medicine Health/Fitness Facility Guidelines includes the recommended temperature ranges and times spent in saunas:
- Sauna – Recommended temperature range 160-170°F; users should limit use to no more than 10 minutes per session.
- Steam room – Recommended temperature rate 100-110°F; users should limit use to no more than 10 minutes at a time.
Potential benefits of portable sauna for MMA fighters
As mentioned earlier, portable saunas are a great way for fighters to recuperate after training; is that it?
There are many potential benefits of a portable sauna for MMA fighters including:
- Lowered heart rate – A low resting heart rate is associated with efficient cardiovascular function. While combat athletes tend to have lower RHRs than average, regular exposure to the heat of the sauna may help lower it further.
- Muscle recovery after a fight – Just like after a hard workout, the sauna can provide muscle relief after a fight, especially if some of that pain comes from swelling after being hit.
- Improved sleep – One surprising benefit of sauna use is that it can improve the quality of your sleep through the release of serotonin and endorphins.
This is why portable saunas are used widely by professional athletes. Any potential benefit of a portable sauna will help them in performing their best and ensure peak execution.
How long should MMA athletes sit in sauna?
Despite all the benefits of the sauna, there can be some dangers when it comes to how long MMA athletes should sit in a sauna.
An MMA athlete’s ideal duration to sit in a sauna is 20-30 minutes per session because it’s enough time to enjoy the benefits of the sauna without risking major harm from the intense heat.
Excessive use of the sauna could potentially be detrimental to health if the proper safety precautions are not taken. For example, severe dehydration can cause one to lose strength and stamina, a counterintuitive result for fighters.
Popular portable saunas that you can use at home
Portable saunas come in many shapes and sizes, with varying price ranges and qualities.
Some of the best saunas are the market are:
- higherDOSE V5 Infrared Sauna Blanket
- Durasage Portable Personal Steam Sauna
- Radiant Saunas Harmony Deluxe Oversized Portable Sauna
- Luminati Infrared Sauna
higherDOSE V5 Infrared Sauna Blanket
This sauna blanket is one of the best available and claims to be #1 selling sauna blanket.
Made with non-toxic PU leather, and pushing up to 420 watts of infrared heating, MMA fighters and athletes alike will find this sauna blanket a worthwhile investment for their health and recovery.
The HigherDOSE sauna blanket increases the body’s thermal energy and promotes a temporary increase in blood flow that can produce sweat and help burn calories.
Use coupon code "saunahelper" at HigherDOSE.com for 15% off!!
Durasage Portable Personal Steam Sauna
With a rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon, this steam sauna features everything you need to enjoy a steam sauna at home.
This portable steam sauna claims to be able to reach an internal temperature of 110-115°F – ideal for relaxation and pain relief. It includes a convenient pocket in the front for the freedom to hold a phone, book, or remote during your session.
Overall, this Durasage sauna is a cost-efficient option for at-home use.
Radiant Saunas Harmony Deluxe Oversized Portable Sauna
Accommodating anyone up to 6’5″ tall, this portable steam sauna is ideal for the larger person.
The built-in thermostat allows for five pre-set temperature levels, ranging from 113-150°F.
No tools are needed when assembling this portable sauna, making it great for traveling.
Good news for the heavyweight contenders in the MMA.
Luminati Infrared Sauna
This hypoallergenic infrared sauna features non-harmful, hand-blown heating lamps. Enclosed in an organic cotton canvas with chemical-free bamboo flooring, these saunas are made from quality materials and built to last with a minimal design.
This is perhaps the most luxurious option for portable saunas, but it includes a 10-year warranty and a 100-day trial.