Is Sauna Better Before or After Workout? Your Fitness Guide and Tips

  • Sauna is generally safe for everyday use.
  • Pairing a sauna with a workout session boosts muscle strength and reduces inflammation and stress.
  • A 20-minute session in the sauna promotes better blood circulation, boosts heart health and relaxes the muscles.
  • Going to the sauna before or after workout is a matter of preference.

Using the sauna regularly can boost cardiovascular health, enhance brain work, and minimize muscle inflammation. However, if you want to include a sauna session in your workout routine, there are some key considerations.

Should you go in the sauna before or after a workout ? We’ll answer this and many more questions below, just stay with us!

Should You Use a Sauna in Your Workout Routine?


People who never miss a workout tend to indulge in a sauna session as part of their post-workout pampering sesh’. Dedicated gym-goers swear by the benefits of sauna as part of their workout, which include reduced muscle soreness and relaxation. 

So, yes – feel free to hit the sauna! However, the dilemma still stands: sauna pre or post-workout ? Let’s get into the details.

Is It Better to Use the Sauna Before or After a Workout ?

Simply put, going to the sauna before or after workout comes down to personal preference and what you’re trying to achieve. Using the sauna before workout can help you commence the warm-up process to prep you for your exercise. Pre-workout sauna increases the blood flow and the body’s core temperature.

On the other hand, hitting the sauna before a workout can take away from your ability to workout since the muscles might become too relaxed. The majority of people who work out regularly prefer to use the sauna after they’re done exercising.

Some of the sauna benefits after workout include: 

  • Accelerated muscle recovery
  • Relived muscle pain
  • Greater release of toxins
  • Clearer skin
  • Better heart health
  • Elevated metabolic rate, etc.

Sauna Safety: Precautions to Take Before and After Your Workout

After you have finished your workout and before you hop into the sauna, make sure you shower first and get rid of the workout sweat. Wait ten minutes after you’re done with your workout to go to the sauna. 

While in the sauna, make sure you limit your time there to a maximum of 20 minutes . Don’t eat a large meal before going to the sauna, too, and remember to stay hydrated by taking small sips of water. 

Can Sauna Sessions Be Tailored to Your Fitness Goals?

Whether you’re aiming to lose weight or add muscle mass to your physique, there are ways the sauna can help. For one, a sauna session will help with weight loss through sweating. On the other hand, if you’re a fitness junkie, you can turn to saunas, as well.

A maximum of 20 minutes in the sauna helps with muscle pain after a powerful workout and recuperates the body as a whole. Sauna activates HSPs (heat shock proteins) above the basic levels. Within these proteins, HSP 72 is the one that protects muscles from tearing and breaking down.

Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Sauna Experience

women enjoying sauna

A nice sauna session can be an enjoyable experience if you know how to do it properly. Consider the following before heading to the sauna:

  • Enter the sauna clean (a short shower will do)
  • Exfoliate the skin to maximize circulation
  • Expose as much skin to the steam as possible
  • Stick to a routine
  • And stay hydrated.

Proper Sauna Etiquette

Using the sauna can be a relaxing experience if everyone inside follows a certain manner of conduct . Proper sauna etiquette goes a long way. Whether you use sauna before or after cardio , or simply as part of your fitness routine, mind the following:

  • Enter and leave the sauna quickly and calmly
  • Respect the dress code
  • Always have a towel
  • Always ask before adding water to the rocks
  • Consult with the others using the sauna when adjusting the temperature
  • Don’t bring your smartphone into the sauna
  • Don’t hog the space
  • Don’t do exercises inside the sauna.

Best Practices for Sauna Use Before or After Your Workout

If you’re wondering, “ Should I use the sauna before or after a workout ?” the answer falls into a grey area. The trick is to be modest and stick to a schedule. For example, the more you make sauna-going a habit, the greater the benefits. 

However, an important thing to remember about sauna is that it doesn’t replace exercise

We’re mentioning this because people think that a half-an-hour sweating session in the sauna is the same as a thirty-minute exercise. 

If you plan on using the sauna before your workout , limit your time there to a maximum of 10 minutes while staying hydrated . On the other hand, sauna-ing after a workout is best done after you’ve showered, and stay for 20 minutes tops.

The Bottom Line: Making Informed Decisions about Sauna and Exercise

sauna basic needs

Whether you go to the sauna before or after workout , there are several considerations to bear in mind. You should know it’s entirely up to you how long you’ll stay there and how relaxing and enjoyable your sauna experience will be. 

When it comes to workouts, fitness junkies prefer to use the amenity after their workout as a nice way to relax the muscles. However, there are times when you should skip the sauna altogether. This refers to having any existing medical conditions.

If you’re looking to add the sauna to your workout routine, make sure you do it properly so that you reap all of its benefits. 


Does sauna burn fat after a workout?

Yes, it can happen. The heat in the sauna causes an increase in metabolic rates, which, in turn, causes calorie burns.

How long after the workout should I sit in sauna?

On average, anywhere between 15 to 20 mites in the sauna, post-workout, is the norm.

Can I sauna every day?

Yes, the sauna is generally safe to use on a daily basis. 

Can I sleep after sauna?

You sure can. In fact, sauna-ing promotes better sleep.

What is better, sauna or steam?

Both saunas and steam rooms are good options. A steam room is great for the skin and the pores, while a sauna is good for blood circulation

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