When people think about hot tubs, they usually picture a small tub that usually fits 4-10 people. However, the basic idea behind a hot tub has been around for thousands of years. Today, we think of the hot tub as a luxury relaxation, but the initial idea behind the hot tub actually started as far back as 4000 years ago with the Ancient Egyptians.
The Earliest Form of the Hot Tub
Today, we do not consider our normal bathtub to be a hot tub, but back in Ancient Egypt, most Egyptians were known for bathing in the cool waters of the Nile. However, the wealthier Egyptians of the time had bathing rooms inside their homes. Where we today, just get into a tub of hot water, the traditional ancient Egyptian hot tubs were used to help them keep clean, but they were also used for aromatherapy, just like our modern day hot tubs. They didn't have technological advances like water jets, but they would use things like oils and flowers in their hot tub bathing rooms to get the same relaxation effect.
Forms of Hot Tubs Throughout History
The Ancient Egyptians were not the only culture that took advantage of the relaxation of hot tubs. The Greeks and Romans were also known for their ingenuity when it came to using make shift hot tubs. The Romans were the culture that took the spa and hot tub era to the next level. Their baths and hot tubs were made larger and more elaborate due to their engineering skills. They created their tubs with concrete, and they even added aqueducts, which made it easier to keep the pools heated. They also added complex boilers in the bath houses to keep the rooms and pools always heated.
Back in 749 A.D., the Japanese sprung into the hot tub era. Although, they have been using natural hot springs for thousands of years, they began building personal wooden soaking tubs to allow those to bath and relax in the hot natural spring waters. Family members would generally bath before going into these tubs, and the elderly were usually the first to enter the actual tub. It was believed by the Japanese society that the elder members of their family would infuse the hot water in the wooden tubs with their wisdom, and when their younger family members would bathe in the water, they would soak in the wisdom of their elders.
Modernized Hot Tubs
It wasn't until the 1960s that hot tubs were upgraded from wood tubs to acrylic and then fiberglass. During this time, features like filtration systems and jets were introduced to the designs of hot tubs to give them a more relaxing feel. Between the 80s and the 90s, the first portable hot tubs hit the scene. These hot tubs had synthetic skirting to make cleaning and maintaining them a lot easier. Plus, manufactures began to include simple types of digital controls. It was during this time when people started seeing individuals with their own spa at their homes. This allowed people to enjoy the relaxation in the privacy of their own backyards, as opposed to heading to a spa or a resort.
Back then, hot tubs were seen but they were still rather expensive for the everyday person, but like most things, hot tubs have gradually become cheaper and easier to purchase, which has allowed them to be placed in even more private residences without the extensive costs of the past. The features have also grown. The jets are stronger, the digital controls are more comprehensive, and the various types of features that one can order with their hot tub has increased drastically.
All in all, hot tubs may have started out as a simple way for people to bathe in hot water and relax, but with the new technologies of the millennia, people all over the world now enjoy their relaxation trips to their personal hot tubs and hot tubs found at spas and other resorts.