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A Near Infrared Sauna Duplicates Exercise Benefits

Over 50 with health issues that prevent you from exercising the way you would like to?  This is surprisingly more common than you might think. Unfortunately, it can lead to inactivity, blood pressure issues, obesity, lung issues, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and more. 

New research shows that the use of a sauna may provide a substitute or alternative to exercise when you can’t get the exercise yourself for whatever reason.

First you need to wrap your head around this concept.  Without doubt, sauna bathing and aerobic exercise have both, individually, been shown to positively affect cardiovascular function.  Things like blood pressure and arterial stiffness.

The second key thing to take on board is that direct comparisons of the results between a single sauna session and the combination of exercise and sauna, or exercise alone are sparse. 

This study is attempting to change this and matched the time of a sauna (30 minutes) with the time of a sauna followed by exercise (30 minutes total).

The Study

Standalone sauna vs exercise followed by sauna on cardiovascular function in a non-naive sauna users A comparison of acute effects.

It looked like this.

study flow chart

They used a Finnish sauna, which is a hot air sauna, but a near infrared sauna would provide similar results.  Realistically, it would most likely provide even better benefits as you will get both the heat benefits as well as the light or photobiomodulation benefits.  Here is a link for more on the benefits of a near infrared sauna.


The results show that both the 30 minute sauna alone, and the 15 minutes of exercise followed by the shorter 15 minute sauna were able to reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure along with mean arterial pressure.

There are some limitations to this study, but this is encouraging work. 

It’s encouraging because not everyone can exercise and we need alternatives.  A portable near infrared sauna, or any type of sauna, can provide many of the benefits of exercise without the exercise.  This is an important area of research and one that needs to be further explored.

If you are in a situation where you can’t exercise it is strongly suggested you look into a near infrared sauna. Not just for the exercise benefits but also for the energy, inflammation, wound healing, sleep, detoxification, relaxation, heart, brain and other benefits.   A portable near infrared sauna in your home may be the tool you are looking for to help get your health back on track.

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