Is a Hot Tub Good for Lower Back Pain?- How to Use for Enhanced Benefits

Is a hot tub good for lower back pain? Does soaking in a hot bath lessen the lower back pain?

These are some of the commonly asked questions by people suffering from back pain.

Who doesn’t enjoy the way the jets feel on her back or the way her body relaxes in the warm water in the hot tub?- Everybody enjoys the spa experience of hot bath.

But if you’re suffering from back pain, you may be afraid of thinking “can hot tubs make back pain worse. Right?

In this post, I’ll explain how hot tub therapy works and how it benefits you.

Is a Hot Tub Good for Lower Back Pain?- Here Is Your Answer

is a hot tub good for lower back pain
is a hot tub good for lower back pain

The simple answer is- YES. The most commonly cited health benefit of a therapy spa is healing from muscles aches and pains.

The therapeutic effects of water are well-known.

After a long, tiresome working day, a dip in the hot tub relieves stress and brings you comfort and relaxation. Besides luxurious self-care experiences, hot baths offer several medical benefits.

Most importantly, modern science and various clinical studies show that hot tub soaking is also good for different discomfort including body pain. The bubbly, warm water eases the pains from conditions like fibromyalgia, arthritis, and back pain.

Spending time in a hot tub is one of the recommended ways to help lessen the discomfort of lower back pain you may be experiencing.

Interestingly, hot water therapy or hydrotherapy has been used for lower back pain relief since ancient time

How Do Hot Tubs Aid In Reducing Back Pain?

Surprisingly, the mechanism is simple.

Hot tubs ease the experience of pain with a combination of three functions- heat, massage, and buoyancy.

Let’s explain.


The temperature of hot tub water may safely go up to 104 degrees.

When you soak, after a few minutes the warm water raises your body temperature which widens the blood vessels. As a result, it enhances blood circulation and sends nutrient-rich blood throughout your body. Consequently, blood flow improves which promotes relaxation.

Warm water loosens tight muscles to heal stiffness and brings down swelling. It also delivers nutrients to injured tissue for healing. Thus, heat soothes your body and provides relaxation.


Water’s buoyancy takes the weight off your painful bones and joints.

If you immerse your body up to your neck in hot tub water, you feel weightless. You’ll experience reduced body weight as much as 90%.

Your water-induced buoyancy relieves the gravity as well as pressure placed on bones, muscles, and joints. As you float in the hot tub, the water pressure and buoyancy take off pressure directly and indirectly from your joints associated with the lower back for a soothing sensation.


Hydro-massage is one of the best ways to help relax and soothe tight, tense muscles. Some hot tubs are specially designed with powerful jets to massage major muscle groups and provide relief from the over-tightness of muscles. Hydromassage, thus, increases blood flow to the areas being massaged and helps to reduce inflammation and pain.

A hot tub with adjustable therapy jets increases back flexibility and mobility, reducing the necessity of taking anti-inflammatory drugs.

hot tub jets
Hot tub jets

All types of hot tubs offer the advantages of buoyancy and heat. But not all hot tubs or jets offer superior massage and hydrotherapy. Also, all the jets don’t necessarily provide the best massage targeting this problem area.

If your aim is relieving back pain through hydro massage, look for the right hot tub for back pain. Keep in mind that the jet needs to be powered by a strong pump to provide a significant effect. They should also be placed at different places and heights to aim the right parts of your body and to provide massage therapy.

The best hot tub for back pain is designed with the best placement and the jet range delivers a luxury massage experience.

freestanding jetted massage hydrotherapy bathtub

When looking for the best hot tub for lower back pain, it is important to consider your shape so that you can find the right seating configuration for your body.

How-To Advice for Using Hot Baths to Relax Your Back

The following five tips will help you to enhance the benefits of hot baths for back pain.

Tip 1: Take it easy

If you’re a healthy adult, how long you’ll stay in the hot tub and how many times per week are up to you.

But when you’re first starting to use your hot tub for your back pain, consult your physician. Soaking in excess heat over a prolonged time may irritate your lower back.

In general, you don’t need to soak more than 20 minutes. Keep the water temperature a few degrees below the maximum. You can increase the water temperature and spa session duration as needed according to your physician.

How frequently you should take a hot bath depends on how severe your back pain is. But, for most back pain sufferers, three times per week work best.

Tip 2: Tighten all of the muscles in your core

Having a strong core will protect and support your spine. Squeeze the front muscles, back muscles, and side muscles. These will support your spine when you need some extra protection.

Tip 3. Perform certain stretches

Soak for 10 minutes before starting stretching. It’ll let your muscles warm up, relax and get ready. Stretching in warm water allows for high resistance and low impact stretching for lower back pain. Side stretch, folding stretch, twist, and simple shrugs are some of the wonderful hot tubs stretches for lower back pain.

Tip 4. Be careful with particular conditions

Hot tub soaking might not be safe for certain people. If you have heart disease or are pregnant, it’s worth having a conversation with your physician. You should avoid hot tub soaking if you have low blood pressure, skin injuries, and urinary tract infection (UTI).

Tip 5: Don’t go directly from warm to cold water.

Avoid jumping straight from the hot tub into the pool to cool off. The cold water could spike your blood pressure.

Is a Hot Tub Good for Lower Back Pain? – My Parting Shots…..

Hot packs and heating pads can help relieve back pain. But nothing beats a soak-in hot tub for surrounding your body with soothing warmth.

Before jumping into your hot tub, do not forget to check with your doctor.

You should follow instructions for hot tub water temperature and soaking duration.

Enjoy the warm, and soaking relief!

Is a Hot Tub Good for Lower Back Pain?- Related FAQs

1. Is epsom salt good for pain relief?

Adding Epsom salts in bath water is great for skin relaxation. But for back pain relief, adding this salt makes no big difference. Because, it is the buoyancy, heat, and massage that create the benefits for back pain. Hence, adding Epsom salts is your choice only when you’re taking a hot bath for back pain.

epsom salt for soaking

2. What are the common reasons for back pain?

One of the principal reasons for back pain, whether chronic or acute, is low back strain.
One may suffer Low back strain due to lifting heavy objects, falling, crouching, or bending repeatedly and, extreme physical exertion. Being overweight, improper posture, emotional stress, or sitting in the same position for a long time can result in low back strain.

3. What is a muscle spasm? Is a hot tub good for back spasms?

Our nerve, Disc, vertebral bone, or other tissue may become injured during our daily activities. The muscles around the area contract and close to prevent damaged tissue to be further injured. This is called a muscle spasm.

If you work, stand or sit for a long time, the muscles go under tension and develop those painful symptoms. However, a hot bath helps to take that pain away and relax the muscle.

4. What is hydrotherapy?

Hydrotherapy or water therapy is one kind of physiotherapy that involves the use of water for treatment and pain relief. A hot bath can make a big difference to someone’s physical and mental health.

It is a proven solution to help soothe and heal back pain.

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