Social Dancing After-Care: Benefits of Hot Baths for Muscle Recovery

Posted by Tina Lee-Almazar on

Sore muscles are the bane of a social dancer’s existence. But! It’s also a sign that you had fun, so there’s that! 

It’s normal for the muscles to feel sore, tight, or slightly painful after a night of dancing because dancing is akin to an intense workout, no matter how light. And if your Latin dance shoes have high heels, your feet and legs will definitely feel painful. 

What Causes Sore Muscles?

Sore muscles are caused by repeated muscle contractions. When engaging in an intense activity, like dancing, the muscles contract as a biological response. Too much contraction can lead to muscle spasms, which can cause discomfort and muscle stress after the activity. If you’ve been ignoring muscle pains and they keep coming back, you might end up suffering from injuries, like damaged nerves, muscle tears, and sprains. 

While intense activities are the most common causes of muscle pain, serious medical conditions like Parkinson’s disease and autoimmune diseases such as fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis could also cause sore muscles. 

So never ignore muscle soreness, do something about it right away. If you’re sure that dancing is the leading cause of your discomfort, find ways to alleviate the pain. 

One of the most common remedies for muscle pain caused by dancing is taking a hot bath. Yes, a hot bath feels heavenly when you're achy all over, but it does more than that! In this guide, let's talk about the benefits of hot baths as an after-care for sore, aching muscles:

 

 

5 Benefits of Hot Baths for Muscle Recovery

Alleviates Stress

Nothing beats a hot bath after a long day! The thing with hot baths is that it works quickly to eliminate muscle pain. It works just as effectively as heat packs on targeted areas; the heat penetrates the skin quickly, loosening tight, stiff muscles and increasing circulation. A hot bath loosens muscle spasms, preventing injuries. 

Relaxation

Feeling tired, anxious, tensed, and generally frazzled when you're aching all over? Treat yourself to a once-a-week bath to unwind. A hot bath is not just good for the body; it also soothes emotional and mental stress. If you’re feeling a little glum, draw yourself a hot bath, and you’ll cheer right up after. You can make the experience even more relaxing by adding drops of your favorite essential oils, playing soft music, and sprinkling a handful of bath salts!


Better Sleep

If you have a big day tomorrow, like a dance competition or a themed social dance event, you need to get a lot of ZZZs to look fresh, well-rested, and fabulous the next day! A hot bath after going to bed is the best way to cap off the night and achieve a deeper, more peaceful sleep. 

Studies show that passive body heating helps lull insomniacs to sleep. A 2012 study shows that hydrotherapy improves sleep quality and reduces fibromyalgia symptoms among women ages between 30 to 65 years old. These studies may be small, but they suggest that hot baths help induce sleep.

Pain Management

You could be wearing the wrong Latin dance shoes, or you haven’t been taking breaks; whatever reason you have for sore, achy feet, legs, and back, you can soothe the discomfort by taking a hot bath! Massaging the sore area also helps ease stiffness and inflammation. The water takes some bodyweight off the painful muscles and joints, improving flexibility and range of motion. 

Better Heart Health

Nothing beats a hot bath when you’ve been rehearsing all day or social dancing all night. Studies show that immersing in hot water has positive effects on the cardiovascular system. Sitting in a tub of hot water for as little as 10 minutes lowers blood pressure. 

While it’s tempting to run a hot bath so you can enjoy the warm water longer, do not let the temperature exceed 105 degrees. Hot temps boost relaxation, but if the water is too hot, it could worsen muscle soreness. The water has to be warm and never too hot to cause discomfort.

… and speaking of discomfort, wearing the right Latin dance shoes also help you stay on your feet longer. Be sure to wear comfortable, cushioned Latin dance shoes at your next social event. Yami dance shoes boast cushioned insoles, stable heel cups, durable straps, and flexible outsoles so you can dance in comfort for hours. Get a pair today and feel the Yami difference!