It sounds the stuff of dreams, doesn’t it? You lie back in the hot bubbling waters of your very own hot tub, gazing across your patio and out over the garden, and all the while you’re there busy doing nothing, your body is burning off an amount of calories equivalent to taking a brisk walk!
Well, according to a recent study by Dr Steve Faulkner and his team at Loughborough University and widely reported nationally – including in this article in the Daily Mail, and featured as part of the BBC’s Trust Me I’m A Doctor Series, currently available to view again on iPlayer – that’s actually the case!
The astonishing discovery was made when Dr Faulkner and his team were looking into alternatives to exercise as a way of controlling type 2 diabetes. When they compared an hour spent in a hot bath with an hour cycling they discovered that the hour in the hot water was more effective at lowering blood sugar levels than the hour on the bike! Not only that, but the time spent in the hot water resulted in a staggering 80% increase in energy expenditure compared with sitting outside it, with those taking part in the experiments burning in excess of 100 calories by, effectively, sitting doing nothing; a figure equivalent to approximately 30 minutes of brisk walking.
Now, of course, we’re not suggesting that lounging in a hot tub should take the place of getting regular exercise, and it’s worth noting that an hour’s cycling will typically burn over 600 calories. However, it does highlight that if you are going to spend an hour relaxing, it may as well be spent passively burning calories!
So, how does this relate to hot tubs, after all you could get the same effect from just having a hot bath, couldn’t you? Well, not quite, and a hot tub does offer further distinct advantages. Firstly, in a hot tub your whole body is immersed up to the neck, where it tends not to be in a bath unless you have a long bath and you lie right back in it, so it ensures the heat is all-enveloping and distributed evenly over the body.
Secondly, from the moment you get in, the temperature in a bath starts to drop and will quickly cool, unless you continuously top up with hot water (remembering to let the same amount of water out as you do so!). In a quality hot tub, like one of the models in our own AllSeas range, the temperature is constantly maintained automatically by the digital control system and in-built heater to ensure it is kept at the exact temperature the bather has set it for.
Lastly, a quality hot tub also offers the other two prongs of the triad which makes up hot water hydrotherapy – buoyancy and massage, with all the commensurate health and well-being benefits that accompany them.
For more information on the health and well-being benefits of hot tub ownership, or to arrange a wet-test of one of our range of quality AllSeas hot tubs at our Wiltshire showroom, please call 01264 850001, or fill in our online contact form and leave your details, and we’ll get right back to you.