Unpacking the Benefits of Saunas for Firefighters

Unpacking the Benefits of Saunas for Firefighters

Sal Fais |

Firefighters are a different breed entirely.  On a daily basis, they put their lives at risk in order to save the lives of others in some of the most dangerous situations imaginable.  And unfortunately, this sort of work can often lead to some very poor health outcomes if they aren’t well taken care of.  It’s our duty, as society, to make sure this happens.

One of the ways that have proven very useful in mitigating the risk of these poor health outcomes is regular sauna usage.  We’re finally starting to see the benefits of saunas come into mainstream consciousness and find their place in many high-stakes industries where the body and mind are put under serious strain.  Firefighting is one of those places where saunas are still underutilized even though the pros are plentiful.

So, in this article, we thought we’d delve into some of these key benefits and show why saunas for firefighters are a very worthy place to invest your resources – so that we can take care of those brave people are out there taking care of us.

  • Sauna Detox Benefits.  The main benefit of saunas for firefighters is the detoxing effect that plays out after a firefighter has been in the midst of a fire.  In these situations, various chemicals and smoke are breathed in by firefighters and this has shown a disproportionate increase in cancer risk over the long term.  In addition, there are particles that are absorbed through the skin that can become harmful if not taken care of. 

Saunas are a great way to try and avoid these effects because they create a detoxing state helping firefighters to sweat out the various toxins.    Ideally, a firefighter will return from a fire, jump in the shower, and then get into a sauna as quickly as they can.  Once in the sauna, it’s recommended that they do some light exercise like peddling on a stationary bike or something like that.  This helps to get the blood pumping and lets the body start to sweat out all the toxins that have been taken in.  This alone can make a huge difference for long-term health outcomes and it’s an important reason why saunas for firefighters can be so powerful.

  • Cardiovascular Benefits.  Saunas provide a wide range of cardiovascular benefits including normalizing blood pressure and lowering cholesterol – both of which are key components of health and fitness.  Firefighters need to be incredibly fit and strong because they are operating with very heavy gear in high-stakes scenarios – and so any cardiovascular benefit that they can get is worth its weight in gold.  The intentional stress placed on the body during sauna usage is valuable for training and conditioning – not to mention acclimatizing the body to high levels of heat which are faced on a daily basis when fighting fires.

This benefit compounds over time, allowing firefighters to stay in the force longer and help more people, without losing their athleticism or ability to cope with normal life.  It’s a superpower, that is underappreciated by many.

  • Muscle Recovery.  In much the same vein as the cardiovascular strain, firefighters also put their muscles through a severe workload when undertaking their duties.  A sauna is the perfect recovery mechanism for tired muscles, helping to recalibrate circulation and give those muscles the fuel they need to rebuild themselves.  This helps to ensure that firefighters aren’t stiff and sore the next day when they must get out there once again.  Regular sauna usage helps to ensure longevity and consistency by giving the body what it needs to recover as efficiently as possible.
  • Mental Health Benefits.  Firefighters are always being called into incredibly stressful scenarios and while they are professionally trained, this does take a mental toll on even the strongest of wills.  When you’re dealing with death, injury, and destruction (much of it which is not under your control) it’s natural that your mental health is going to come under stress.  Saunas have been shown to be wonderful tools for managing your mental health because of the physical effects of high heat.  Saunas produce various hormones and heat-shock proteins that offer antidepressant effects and help firefighters to loosen up after a difficult day out in the field. 

In addition, saunas force you to be present and isolated, giving you time and space to reflect on what’s happened and process it without any external stimuli.  There is enough stress on the body that your mind can clear, and you can spend some time in meditation or silent reflection.  Many firefighters find it a place of refuge that helps to rejuvenate them after difficult experiences.  It can also act as a natural bookend to the day, a routine that helps signal to the mind that the emergency is over and that you can return to a more stable and peaceful state.  You exit the sauna a different person than how you walked in.

Those benefits are incredibly powerful and show that saunas for firefighters are a highly valuable tool for maintaining long-term health both physically and mentally.  Here at Salus Saunas, we’ve always gone above and beyond to serve our firefighters because we know that our products can help, and we want to see more of our brave first responders getting the most out of this revolutionary experience.

If you are a fire station, why don’t you consider getting a sauna for your facility?  Or you could even subsidize firefighter sauna discounts to encourage your teams to leverage the power of the sauna for their own good.  Either way, saunas for firefighters are well worth investigating and from our perspective, might be one of the best investments you ever make.

At Salus Saunas, we are proud to offer firefighter sauna discounts and lots of post-purchase support to make sure that we can give back to those workers who put their lives on the line for our benefit.  We salute you and we want you to live long and healthy lives.

Check out our catalog and get started today!