Winter is here and so is hot tub season! Hot tubs are very popular this time of year, but they may not be all that they are cracked up to be. Hot tubs are a great way to spend time with friends and family, to relax after a long day, and to reduce stress levels. Hot tubs have also be proven to help heal injuries, improve joint flexibility, and sleep.
Although the benefits of soaking in a hot tub are plentiful, doing so after a long run or hard workout may be more harmful than good. After a long run or tough workout, your muscles and joints are typically inflamed and adding heat to the specific areas will increase blood flow and increase inflammation.
Also, after a long run or hard workout, your body may be a little dehydrated and adding warm water from the hot tub will more than likely dehydrate you more. Below are some more hot tub safety facts that you should keep in mind.
Reasons to Avoid the Hot Tub:
- Pregnancy: Doctors recommend avoiding hot tubs due to the risk of the body over-heating and simply dehydration.
- High Blood Pressure: Heat may cause unwanted reactions to medications; check with physician before use.
- Heart Disease: The extreme temperatures may cause dizziness, nausea, or fainting.
- Over-use: Pay attention to time limits; 15 to 20 minutes is more than enough time to soak in the heated water. Excessive time will cause dehydration.
- Substance Use (Alcohol): The combination of heated water and substance use will thin the blood and more than likely cause dehydration or dizziness.
- Post Workout: Avoid heated water after a hard workout or long run due to the risk of dehydration and inflammation of the muscles and joints.