The first ever Perfect Sweat Summit was held at the Archimedes public banya in San Francisco on March 11-12, 2014. The invite-only event brought together a lineup of of over 50 sweat researchers, academics, and aficionados from all parts of the country and the globe (names and affiliations listed below).
During the two day event the participants explored the growing body of research that corroborates and expands on what the ancients have long known: that sweating is a valuable aid to healing and health. It was Hippocrates (460-377 B.C.) who wrote: “Give me the power to create a fever and I shall cure every illness.”
The conference agenda was loosely arranged around five categories:
• Social sweating, which includes sweat etiquette, manners, and communal customs and approaches.
• Spiritual Sweating, which includes rituals and customs that take the bather from the every day to the eternal.
• Healthy Sweating, which includes all the physiological aspects of sweating, from both an allopathic and homeopathic point of view.
• Sweat Structures, which includes issues around the physical structure and design of the sweat bath.
• Sweat History, which includes just that, interesting historical accounts, reports, data on sweat bathing practices around the world.
The program was organized and directed by Mikkel Aaland, and supported by Mikhail Brodksy, founder of San Francisco’s Archimedes Banya; and Greg M. Moga, Executive Producer of the Perfect Sweat documentary series.
The event was filmed by Emmy Award winning director Doug Pray.
Here is an excerpt from the press release announcing the event. “I am so pleased to see that, through this summit, the sweat and sauna experience will be given such a prominent showcase. We hope the findings and collective brainstorming that will come out of this in-gathering of sweat cognoscenti will bring more attention and respect to this world-wide tradition that brings together people in a healthy and meaningful way.”
Archimedes Banya in San Francisco is the vision of Russian immigrant Mikhail Brodsky who has created a total bathing experience, blending Russian style bathing with other sweat bathing traditions and rituals from around the world. This is not your typical bathhouse! Archimedes Banya features several sweat rooms, a cold plunge, and rest areas with breathtaking views of the San Francisco Bay. It boasts a world-class restaurant, exercise rooms, and several well-equipped meeting rooms. banyasf.com
Special Thanks: Hein Catering & Smokehous and The FruitGuys
Perfect Sweat Summit Participants
Leonard Koren Author and Publisher of Wet Magazine
Larry Holman Former Manager of Seattle Banya
Perry Garfinkel New York Times
Doug Pray Director
Clint Carlson Minnesota
Michael Nordskog Author Opposite of Cold Wisconsin
Risto Elomaa President International Sauna Society Helsinki
Byron MacWilliams Author With Light Steam (Culture of the Bania)
Stephen A. Colmant Las Cruces, New Mexico
Jarmo Lehtola CEO Finnish Sauna Society Helsinki
Mika Hotakainen, Co-Director, Steam of Life
Phil Cousineau Author
Cynthia Bridgeman Josayma Balneology Institute Bay Area
Glenn Auerbach Sauna Builder; Editor Sauna Times Minnesota
Timo Myllyntaus Sauna Historian (Smoke Sauna) Dpt. of Finnish History
University of Turku Turku, Finland
Sean Mullen physiological & psychological effects of heating the body. Illinois
Surinder Bains owner Miraj Hammam Spa Vancouver, BC
Mary Bemis Publisher, Insiders Guide to Spas Oregon
Mal Sharpe TV and Radio Personality
Markos Kounalakis President and publisher emeritus of the Washington Monthly
Molly Reichert Adjunct Faculty, University of Minnesota School of Architecture
Matt Wiggins* Bohemian Capitalist, Hospital & Health Care firstname.lastname@example.org
Nell Waters Founder, SOAK, Whole Body Tonic
Dr Reinhard R Bergel CEO H-e-a-t.Inc.
Alexander Generalov Consultant for the Sanduny banya in Moscow
Kathy Nelson Manager Kabuki Hot Sprints
Patty Zubov Producer
Maggie Hallahan Maggie Hallahan Productions
Riku Hämäläinen Adjunct Professor, Study of Religions Helsinki, Finland
Danielle Douglas volunteer
Bruce Yelaska Graphic Designer
Jeannette Waegemakers Schiff, PhD Assoc. Professor, Faculty of Social Work University of Calgary
David Ewing Duncan journalist, Newsweek & New York Times
Ariel Sutro, speaking on the San Francisco Sutro Baths