4 Reasons Why I Ditched My Treadmill For A JNH Infrared Sauna

4 Reasons Why I Ditched My Treadmill For An Infrared Sauna

When I opened my PT practice, Surfer’s Edge Physical Therapy, in 2013, I thought it would be a good idea to include a treadmill in my clinic for gait and running analysis. But , 5 years after the fact, I can honestly say I had used the treadmill maybe 6-10 times total with my clients OR myself for exercise. The funny thing, when I asked myself ‘why not’? It was that ultimately, treadmill ambulation is mechanically so different from land-based ambulation, that I never really wanted my clients to be on the treadmill and when I did get around to running a little on it, my body just didn’t feel right. 

Turns out that little inkling I had felt about ‘not feeling right’ running on the treadmill is being proven over and over again in current research (click HERE to read a cool article about treadmill performance), and, rather than letting my treadmill turn into something that collected dust, I decided to sell it and buy something far more supportive and beneficial for my degenerative spine - an infrared sauna. 

For those of you who haven’t heard about infrared light therapy and its benefits, let me bring you up to speed. Infrared refers to light wavelengths between 6-14 microns. For humans, our eyes do not have the capacity to visually see this wavelength of light, but we can feel it as heat. Recent research has identified infrared light therapy as a healing modality aiding in healing processes such as: 

  • wound healing
  • diabetes
  • heart disease 
  • improving growth hormone
  • nerve regeneration

In addition, for those of you who live in a cold climate, have Seasonal Affective Disorder, or simply are looking for a way to get your core body temperature back up after surfing in cold water, this type of sauna is great because it takes approximately 10 minutes to warm up and can be used in your home or garage on a regular 120 volt outlet.

 So over the holidays this past year, I took the proceeds from my treadmill sale, a gift card I’d been gifted from a family member, hopped on Amazon Prime, and bought a 2 person JNH far infrared sauna (yes, Amazon Prime, to take advantage of free shipping). Hands down it’s been the best $1049.00 (total!) investment I have made in a long time. Why?

Here’s my list of 4 reasons why I am so grateful I traded my treadmill for an infrared sauna:

  1. I wake up and feed my dogs hit the on button in the sauna, and it’s warmed up before I have even gotten through my cup of coffee.
  2. I spend 15 minutes in the AM and/or 15 minutes in the PM in the sauna, then go into my regular stretching routine. This allows my body and spine to be much more relaxed and muscles more pliable. And ultimately I am more motivated to do my exercise program when my spine isn’t as stiff and sore (note the sauna does NOT replace your exercise program).
  3. For those of you who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder or Arthritis, you know how cold and gloomy/grey winter weather can affect you. With the sauna close by, ‘warmer weather’ is just a short walk to my garage away. Which, by all means, doesn’t trump a tropical surf trip to Costa Rica, but - easier on the wallet perhaps.
  4. While we’ve gotten more precipitation this year than normal, I find myself opting out of longer hot showers just to get warmed up or my stiff back moving, which saves water, and dramatically improved my water bill.

The downsides of buying an infrared sauna: My electricity bill has gone up. Maybe 20 bucks? Which you could argue is a little bit of an investment. But like I said INVESTING in your health IS healthcare. So for me, I’m okay with it. 

Below is the link to the sauna I purchased, as well as some scientific research that better explains infrared light technology. Click on the image below if you're interested in ordering one. 



For more tips, tricks, and advice - sign up for the Surf Body Connection Newsletter, below. 


Components of Practical Clinical Detox Programs— Sauna as a Therapeutic Tool Walter Crinnion, ND

Far infrared radiation (FIR): Its biological effects and medical applications

Health Benefits Using Infared Sauna-JNH

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