thread: 2013-08-01 : A Guide to the Sauna for Shy Americans

On 2013-08-02, jjohannes wrote:

As others have suggested, coed sauna isn't that common in Finland anymore. In the 19th century (and early 20th century), in rural areas, it was common that the entire household would bathe together, family members and maids and farm hands and all. Sometimes even multiple households would take turns hosting sauna evening and everyone would attend, although then sometimes women and girls did go first with younger boys and then the older married men would bathe together. Some women, however, would be invited in to wash their backs. Coed saunas were inseparable from rural lifestyle.

The Finland hasn't been immune to the Western culture and its body complexes. Some people no longer see the reason to bathe together (although not to bathe together would require one). In fact, in Germany & Austria, probably because of their FKK lifestyle, coed nudity in public saunas & spas is more widely accepted. In those countries, such behaviour is associated with going to spa and is totally inseparable from that experience. For the finns, it is mainly an "inevitable" part of the university student's life.


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