An informative article about the history of the Japanese bathtub and how it has evolved into the models offered on the market today. Includes information on rituals regarding the Japanese bath traditions as well.
The Japanese bathtub has been around for a very long time. Bathing has always had a significant importance in Japan and have been around longer than the tubs and rituals in western countries. The importance of how the Japanese bath should be done and the rituals that should be performed has helped to shape the style and types of tubs available. To learn more about the history of the bathtub and bathing in Japan, review the information below.
The Beginning of the Japanese BathtubBathing and the origination of the bathtub in Japan began as a Buddhist ritual of cleansing the body and soul and has emerged into what it is today. The Japanese believe in cleansing and soaking in a tub. That is why the design is so different than that of a western-style product. When first designed, the idea was to allow individuals to place as much of their body under the water as possible in order to provide for adequate and complete cleansing during rituals. Differences from Western Bathtubs.
There are a few major differences between Japanese bath tubs and those of the western world. One of the most noticeable differences is the depth of the products. Western bathtubs tend to be shallow and are often no deep enough to even cover the entire body without lying down. Japanese bath tubs are not usually for reclining, but instead you sit straight up and soak in water up to your neck. In order to provide for a better therapeutic quality, the water that is traditionally used in a Japanese bathtub is much hotter than that in a western one. This allows for the heat to seep down into the muscles and provides better relaxation and medical benefits. The average temperature that is used is 40 degrees Celsius and this can be quite an adjustment for those not used to such temperatures.
Traditional Japanese Bathtub Ritual
One of the most common Japanese bathtub rituals is that of taking a shower before getting into the bath. This is done to cleanse the body of dirt and oil before climbing into the tub to soak. This was originally done out of courtesy for those who were to be using the Japanese bath after you in order to keep the water clean. If you have a bathtub only for your own personal use this may not be needed, but it is something to keep in mind if you share a community tub. The Japanese bathtub is a product steeped in history and tradition. There are many ways that these tubs are different than our traditional western products and they are often used for therapeutic purposes. This information is only an overview of the history of these tubs and can help you decide whether a Japanese style tub could be right for you.