South African Journal for Research in Sport, Physical Education and Recreation

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Socio-economic factors and psycho-physical well-being as predictors of sauna use among male university students

Robert Podstawski, Dariusz Choszcz, Antii Homkanen, Anja Tuohino, Ewelina Kolankowska


The aim of this study was to assess the influence of socio-economic factors and psycho-physical well-being on the popularity of sauna usage among male university students. The research was conducted in 2012 on 550 first-year male university students aged 19 to 20 years (20.23±0.83yrs). The participants were asked to  complete an anonymous questionnaire in which they described their frequency of sauna usage and their psycho-physical well-being on the day of use and on the  following day. Firstly, the findings revealed that these students rarely used the sauna and that most of the evaluated socio-economic factors, including place of permanent residence, mother's educational background, the monthly budget of the student and the type of secondary education, had no significant influence on sauna usage.  However, two factors did contribute significantly to the frequency of sauna usage, namely the father's educational background and the location of secondary school. Secondly, psycho-physical well-being (impressions on the day of sauna usage and on the following day), significantly influenced the sauna usage and had a significant positive influence on the respondents’ well-being.

Key words: Sauna usage; First-year male students; Socio-economic status;  Psycho-physical well-being

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