Over recent years baths have been literally ripped out of bathrooms to make way for the new generation of steam showers, which offer all kinds of health-and-wellness benefits. This is totally understandable and in smaller bathrooms is almost certainly the right move, but, if you do have enough space for a bath, then it’s worth giving whirlpool baths serious consideration.
Understanding the negative points of whirlpool baths
Before we go on to explain why we think whirlpool baths are such good news, let’s quickly explain why you might want to give them a miss, so you don’t have to spend your time reading about all the benefits of them only to discover that they’re not right for you in your situation.
Whirlpool baths are more expensive than standard baths. This stands to reason, they do more so they cost more. For the sake of completeness, they are also slightly more expensive to run than standard baths, because of the jets, but, this cost is negligible.
Whirlpool baths currently have a more limited range of suppliers. For the record, it’s worth noting that there’s a difference between a more limited range of suppliers and a more limited range of options compared to standard baths. These days, you can get whirlpool baths in all kinds of shapes, sizes, colors and finishes. It just means that there are fewer places to buy them as compared to standard baths. Basically, standard baths are becoming a lot less common than they used to be and whirlpool baths are even more of a niche market so it’s understandable that there are fewer places to buy them. On the plus side, they tend to be stocked by more premium sellers with the best customer service around.
Whirlpool baths tend to come in one piece. Standard baths can be disassembled, at least slightly, to make it a bit easier to get them from the delivery point to your bathroom. Showers, even steam showers, are even easier to get from A to B. If you have space for a whirlpool bath, then this fact is unlikely to be an insurmountable problem, but it may mean you have to opt for a small bath and/or a bath of a slightly different shape than you’d originally planned.
Understanding the positives of whirlpool baths
All baths will give you the benefits of hot water and all baths will give you the benefits of steam (although only to a relatively small extent, if you want the full benefits of steam, you need either a separate steam generator, or a steam shower, the latter tends to be the most practical option for smaller bathrooms). The benefit of a whirlpool bath is that it gives you the benefit of massage.
Before we explain what this means in practice, it’s worth taking the time to emphasize that with whirlpool baths, the quality of the massage you will receive is only as good as the quality of the massage jets used in the whirlpool bath. This means that if you see two whirlpool baths with what look like similar feature sets but very different prices, the reason for this is almost certainly going to lie in the build quality in general and the massage jets in particular. It’s strongly recommended to keep this in mind during the purchasing process. Another point to remember is that good-quality whirlpool baths will probably allow you to adjust the sprays to some extent, but the area where the force of the jets will be strongest will be defined by where they are located on the tub. Therefore, if you have specific medical needs, e.g. you suffer from back pain, then you’ll want to make sure that there are jets where you need them. If you only want a general massage, then just make sure that you buy a whirlpool bath with good massage jets.
A high-quality whirlpool bath will give you the benefits of massage in the privacy and convenience of your own home every time you step into it. No, it isn’t as good as visiting a professional, human, massage therapist but on a cost-per-visit basis, it’s a whole lot cheaper and can still deliver good results, possibly most obviously soothing away aches and pains in the muscles and joints. It also speeds up the metabolism, basically, getting the body to work a bit faster and a bit harder and thereby speeding up the processing of nutrients, the removal of toxins and the immune system.