Dear members of ISA and other Saunalovers
The new year has been starting with some bad news from the Covid19
front. In many countries there are lockdowns of saunas etc. public places
and if not a lock down anyway the people do not want to come because
they are afraid of their health.
This has been causing a lot of economic problems inside the industry
and is going to hurt even more because it looks like that the helping hand
meaning the vaccine is behind the schedule everywhere.
In practice all the sauna events have been cancelled or at least postponed
to the unknown future. The only activities which have been growing are the
different webinars. And what is good most of these have been free of charge.
But still, I have to say that I do not like virtual sauna at all even though some
Finnish people have been succeeding to get customers to visit saunas
in Finland virtually. I just hope that these customers get after this Covid time
an option to visit a real sauna that is also good.
The manufacturing industry of sauna equipment like stoves have been anyway doing well because people want to build their own saunas so that they can have a safe sauna anytime they like. E.g., stove manufacturer Harvia is saying that 2020 was their best year ever and they could not even deliver as much as the demand should have needed. They publish their results 11.02.2021.
About the events last year postponed INTERBAD should happen in September
2021. Please see the updated info https://www.messe-stuttgart.de/interbad/
We have been waiting also the decision concerning the Olympics in Tokyo. There are many new interesting saunas opened in Japan and many more coming. And they could have been interesting places to visit together with the sports events. The lock down has been affecting also in Japan and just now the situation concerning the Olympics is unclear.
As You know we have besides the national member JSSA several supporting members in Japan and all are active in the sauna business. last year we got SAUNAIKITAI to join ISA and they have e.g., a very interesting web site where they have been listing the saunas and other bathing places in Japan. That list is very good for choosing possible visits when travelling in Japan. please feel free to visit their website. Google-translation is good enough for that page if translating into English. https://sauna-ikitai.com
Our old supporting member Yukitaka Yoneda is opening a new SaunaLab in Tokyo in the spring. Yuki-san has been doing a lot for the Finnish sauna culture in Japan. The Finland village is a nice showroom and has been attracting to all the events a lot of people but also, his Saunas and SaunaLabs in Nagoya and Fukuoka attract a lot of people.
Actually, most of the events have been sold out during the first minutes even though they have been taking up to 600 people. Unfortunately, the Japan Sauna Day which is the seventh of March cannot be organized because of Covid in Koumi but maybe in a smaller scale somewhere else.
KLAXON “BABY” NODA HAS BUILT “THE SAUNA” IN JAPAN NEAR NAGANO
Enclosed is an interesting video showing how they enjoy a wood fired Finnish type log house sauna in Japan. The idea to build the sauna he got when visiting Finland.
The project was built with public funding and the funding was in actual case 175% of the expenses. And people are visiting this place near Nagano so that they consider building more saunas.
So, if You plan to be in that region it is worth visiting. Mikkel Aaland was visiting the place when shooting the document SWEAT in Japan.
There is also a guest house nearby so if one is travelling there it is a possibility to stay overnight and really enjoy the sauna.
If you like to find in Japan bathing that is suitable for ladies here is the book:
Iwata Ryoko was publishing last week: https://www.value-press.com/pressrelease/262779
MOOMIN SAUNA HATS etc. and other sauna products
Some of our Japanese members were interested in Moomin sauna products
so, we do add the link toone source here.
Adorable seat covers, bench towels and more sauna products for all friends of the Moomins.
All sauna textiles are made of high-quality mixture of linen (60%) and cotton (40%). They are highly absorbent, dirt resistant and withstand wear and tear as well as frequent washing.
More on the website:
INTRODUCTION OF SOME MEMBERS OF ISA
INTRODUCING NORTH AMERICAN SAUNA ASSOCIATION NASS
NASS is our National Member in North America. Just now they have on their blog also an interesting article about Ventilation in the sauna from Lassi Liikkanen, Finland. (Please note that there is coming out a book in English written by Lassi Liikkanen later this spring. More information comes soon. You can also contact ISA about that).
You can subscribe also the NASS-material from their website. There are happening many things in North America just now around sauna. We naturally hope that this means better quality saunas there.
LYTEFIRE SOLAR sauna is the supporting member of ISA
“We have here a repository of good pictures and video from the sauna:
Especially the folder “Sauna Inside” and “Sauna Summer” have good pics, but there is also the snowy images from the winter. You can find English (andFinnish!) Texts on the website,
Here a quick recap:
The newly developed Lytefire Sauna is powered by nothing but sunlight and allows for a sustainable sauna experience. It was developed by Solar Fire in collaboration with Heuberge Mountain Resort in Switzerland, where the sauna has been open to hotel guests and along with many excited sauna visitors has also attracted local and International media. Additional, larger and smaller saunas will be commissioned based on the interest of project partners and clients.
The first Lytefire Sauna on Heuberge Mountain Resort (2000 meters altitude) can be visited in Switzerland upon request.
FEW WORDS ABOUT THE SAUNA STANDARDS
As many of You know there are different standards in different countries also for sauna products. In Europe we have EU-standardization which is accepted in the EU plus countries meaning totally some 32 countries. Most of the sauna people do know this standard for continuously wood fired stoves 15821 which is the basis of the testing for the CE marking of stoves. This standard has been harmonized in EU and means that if the product is tested in one of the approved testing authorities the test results and the CE-marking is valid in all the other countries. This kind of arrangement is good for free trade and free competitions.
In United States the standardisation of sauna equipment like stoves is in the hand of UL (Underwriters Laboratories). There is not anyway a standard for wood fired stoves from UL in USA, yet.
UL 875 is the standard for electrical stoves and if someone wants to sell in USA the approval from UL is in practice a must in order to sell in USA. If one can even buy a stove without the UL label, the problem comes with the insurance.
In Europe we have the standard IEC 60335-2-53 which differs from the UL one in many aspects. Just now the Americans have been waking up and do seem to be interested to find a way to harmonize these two standards and so make it easier to sell products freely. We just hope that President Biden´s own America first program is not stopping this development.
ISA is involved in the UL 875 standardization so that I am a member of the technical committee.
Let´s see what is happening. Maybe if Europe and US find each other here we can get a global standard at least for electrical stoves.
In CEN there is also a standardization group called TC 136 that should prepare a standard for public saunas. the start has been slow because of Covid that has been postponing the meetings. ISA as well as few of its members are involved in this standardization by being liaison members.
All this is happening very slowly but there is a development anyway.
Finally, I would like to point out that the Finnish Sauna Culture was accepted to the UNESCO-list 17.12. Even though it is Finnish Sauna Culture we at least in ISA feel that it is showing that SAUNA and SAUNA culture are important for all people. Together with the acceptance of the Estonian Smoke sauna few years ago we can see that sauna is well present on that list.
Let´s hope that this is also helping to construct better saunas in all countries.