2018.10.24 - Bathing Etiquette /7 mistakes you should avoid in baths.../

2018.10.24 - Bathing Etiquette /7 mistakes you should avoid in baths.../

Bathing Etiquette
/7 mistakes you should avoid in baths.../

The cold weather of autumn/winter is back, and it feels great to take a bath in one of our hot-water spas after a hard day’s work and to enjoy the massaging jets and the sweating heat of the saunas. Yes…they are others enjoying it as well, not just us...What should we do so that we do not disturb other people's recreation?


First, we should read the house rules displayed at the entrance of every bath and beach. We may think that we are civilized people and we do not have to do that. In that case, we should read them on our way out and compare our behaviour with the rules! Baths are places, where people can get very close to each other physically. In the sauna we sweat at 10 cm from each other, we sit in the hot water, we swim after each other in the pool, we turn together, and we dry our hairs together in the changing room. This is an intimate relationship, whether you like it or not, moreover, we do this underdressed, so this is a complicated situation. There are objective rules that must be followed and we will not have any surprises.

1) Changing room

Most changing rooms in today's baths are co-ed. One changing room for small and big, women and men. There are cabins, but as we leave the cabins, we are in a common space. What are the limits in a common changing room? Can a man dry his hair half-naked, since he came out of the pool two minutes ago, while it is awkward for a woman to dry her hair only in her underwear? A bra and a swimsuit are basically the same – at least in their size! In order for us to avoid balancing between ethical and less ethical behavior, we should hold back our nudist selves and keep it for a remote seashore rock for the summer.

2) The dilemma of foot washing

Before entering the pool, to use the foot washer is obligatory. The house rules of most baths indicate this, and this is displayed by the pools as well. Nonetheless, many people jump over the foot washer and whisper to their partners that they will not step into that water. Yeah, well… We think about the fact that many people have already washed their feet in that water, but we do not take it into account that we will swim around with the same people in the pool, and if they had not washed their feet, the pool's water would be less clean. The issue of the slippers adds a certain nuance to the dilemma of foot washing, which has a simple solution: At the bath, wear slippers! On the one hand, we take less dirt into the pools, if we wear slippers on the corridors; on the other hand, we avoid the danger of slipping. Avoiding the shower is less obvious. However, showering is recommended and we should not forget it before going into the pool!

3) Wallow

The best part of baths is the area with massaging jets and bubbles, with a limited number of places. We politely wait for the moment, when a place gets empty, and not too greedy, but quickly enough we try to occupy that place, before anyone else does. These are unpleasant moments when bathing in a place that is not completely empty. There are places, where a whistle indicates the time to leave our favourite jet and to cede the place to someone else. The etiquette also includes that we should not wait for a sign to leave this wallow, we should rather cede our spot to other people, and we will like it, if other people will cede their places to us!

Rudas panoráma

4) Sauna

In the world of saunas, it is all about the small details. There are saunas, where swimsuits should be taken off, and there are places, where nudity is not allowed, since it is not accepted everywhere. One thing is certain. We should bring a towel and place it under us to absorb our sweat, instead of the bench. Slippers are not accepted. We should not talk loudly in the sauna, and we should not pour water or essential oils onto the stove without asking - we should leave that to the sauna master!

5) Swimming around

A pool seems to be a simple place: everyone is swimming back and forth on the right side of the swimming lane and tries not to kick others. However, nothing is that simple. There are faster people, who have to overtake others, but someone is swimming from the opposite direction, so one has to wait and starts to get nervous, all one could do is to change the lane. But what if someone is swimming there too? It is not accepted to swim randomly in the pool, to jump from the edge of the pool, and we should try to maintain the order, which is very hard, if there are many persons swimming in the pool. And the most important thing is to wear a swim cap, especially, if it is directly requested, since we would not like to swallow someone else’s hair either!


6) Staring

Half-nakedness is a specific feature of baths, and so is the inevitable eye-attracting effect. Ethical bathers do not stare at attractive bathers of the opposite sex, they may train their peripheral vision, or scan the place left to right to see the respective person from time to time. This is allowed. There were times, when this was not allowed. Bathers had to be almost completely dressed or it was easier to simply separate men from women. Let he or she, who wouldn’t be happy about being stared at cast the first stone. It is a delicate issue, but indecent staring, whistling, chatting up, a more direct approach or indiscretion is definitely not allowed. And of course, provoking is not accepted either. Everything regarded as provocative, should be covered!

7) Babies in baths

The presence of children in baths is a delicate issue. Of course, waterslide parks were created for them, but the pre-war thermal baths are not child-compatible, even if they have one or two pools for children. We must accept that the majority of bathers are there for relaxation and tranquillity, or to ease their joint pains, and are not looking for children shouting around them. This does not mean that it is forbidden to take children to baths, but one must weigh, whether he or she will enjoy being in a place, where there is no slide or sandbox, and where the creation of a harmonious and polite atmosphere is a serious challenge even for adults. In case our child is not mature enough to behave as requested at the respective place, we should look for a bath, where the space is optimally composed for children, and where we can let them play freely without any limitations.
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