The Hogarth is Safely Reopening Their Saunas
THE HOGARTH SAFELY REOPENS THEIR SAUNAS FROM 19TH JULY
Having reviewed a wide body of scientific papers and advisory articles including those from International Public Policy Advisor for IHRSA (International Health & Racket & Sports Association) and Technical Advisory Group Swimming Pools, Hot Tubs, Saunas and Steam Rooms and Risk to make the decision to safely reopen our Saunas from 19th July under COVID-secure protocols and keep our Steam Room temporarily closed.
SAUNAS - why we’re reopening
Saunas operate at higher temperatures, typically 70-100°C and have porous wood furniture that could make it difficult for any virus to survive for long. It is possible for the virus to be rapidly deactivated at higher temperatures that are typically found in sauna environments. Although, it is recommended that people do NOT go in them if they are feeling ill in any way and should not, for example, “sweat out a cold”.
Heat inactivates the virus by denaturing the structure of the proteins, affecting the attachment and replication of the virus in the host cell. There is strong evidence to show that elevated temperatures inactivate the virus. It is strongly advised to use a combination of restricted use, appropriate cleaning and vacant periods to further reduce the risk of transmission.
The Hogarth’s saunas are a wooden construction where the internal air is dry, operating at temperatures above 70°C with humidity as low as 3%, but usually between 5 and 20%.
Here’s how we’re reopening:
• Male and female saunas will reopen 19th July
• 1 per person or 2 from the same household
• Pre-bookings non-essential, there will be a “in use”/ “not in use” sign to use and be aware of outside the sauna
• Cleaning products available to wipe down before and after use
Here’s what we recommend to our members:
• Wash your hands before and after use of the sauna
• Please wipe down the area using the cleaning products provided
• DO NOT visit the Club and the sauna if you are unwell or experiencing symptoms of COVID-19
• If you find someone using the sauna, please DO NOT enter and instead wait until it is vacant to use
• Sit on a clean towel in the sauna
• Please adhere to social distancing in other common areas of the Club eg. The changing room
WHAT ARE THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF USING A SAUNA?
It is widely established that saunas and steam rooms may provide a range of benefits to human mental and physical health.
Regular sauna use can:
• Lower risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease• Aid in physical recovery and ease pain
• Eliminate toxins and cleanse the skin
• Improve cardiovascular health
• Reduce stress and improve sleep
STEAM ROOM – why we’re not reopening
Steam rooms operate at a far lower temperature, most in the UK being up to 45oC, and are not warm enough to interfere with the lifecycle of the coronavirus, so they could be a potential source of contamination. Unlike saunas, it is likely that long periods of time without human occupancy would be insufficient to effectively deactivate the virus (i.e. several hours between cohorts of users). Sterilisation of surfaces between cohorts is unlikely to be adequate or effective given the large amount or surfaces within steam rooms.
The virus is likely to persist in the air as aerosols after an infected individual has left the steam room. These cannot be removed by sterilising surfaces. In an enclosed, unventilated space, this poses a direct risk to the next user.
Not many steam rooms in the modern format would be operable with social distancing and enhanced cleaning. Also, the operating temperatures being lower should enable almost continuous cleaning. The risk assessment would be weighing up the ability to clean versus the number of potential clients.
Hogarth steam room operates at high humidity of around 90 to 100% and at temperatures typically up to and around 45°C. Steam is often blown into the room and infused with essential oils. The finished surfaces are tiled.
On the basis of the above and a lack of evidence supporting Steam Rooms to be safe, we have decided to keep our steam room temporarily closed until further notice.
Get in touch using the Contact Form below with any enquiries or call 020 8995 4600.