Banya Journal: The New Beginning

The idea of an online publication about banya is more than a few years old.

People who know banya understand that it is an incredibly vast subject. Banya lives at the intersection of health, society, culture, and spirituality. It is a unique social club where participants are united by the appreciation of the primal ritual of heat and cold, as well as the effects of it on one’s body and mind.

The topic is rich, so an online publication exploring it was a great idea.

But… Life interfered, COVID happened, and these plans were postponed.

Meanwhile, Archimedes Banya’s community kept expanding year after year. Tens of thousands were initiated into the ways of banya, and thousands became regulars.

Hundreds of new “banya afficionados” emerged, drawing on the vast pool of knowledge about the practice.

From platza competitions to the upcoming tour to explore European bathing customs, our social club is expanding.

You can still join the European Bathing Cultures, History, and Food tour!

It is also more influential than it has ever been. From Texas to New York, Yerevan to Germany, banya-people know “Archimedes in San Francisco.” And yet… no publication. Until now.

My name is Alex, I am an Archimedes Banya regular.

I am not an “expert” in the subject, but I have carried a love for banya throughout my life.

I remember the neighbor’s banya in the Siberian countryside I was brought to when I wasn’t yet 4 years old.

I’ve been to Soviet-style banyas in St. Petersburg, historical public baths in Moscow…

Legendary Sanduny in Moscow

… and a tiny wooden banya on the bank of the roaring Katun river in Altai mountains just across the border from Mongolia.

Katun river in Altain mountains… One of the few places in the world that can compare to California in terms of natural beauty.

I’ve been to the sulfur baths in Tbilisi, Georgia, and hot springs in Northern Italy.

Sulfur baths – probably the oldest Tbilisian social club.

Talk to me in 5 years. I hope to add a dozen more places to this list!

But only when I started coming to Archimedes did I realize that banya is much more than a version of spa.

I started learning. I was taught about air circulation in a sauna, the styles of platza, the correct way to do the cold plunge, and the variety of banya traditions worldwide.

I joined the community. I celebrated New Year’s and birthdays in banya and made friends. I bought and lost an unspeakable amount of banya hats.

Through all that, I started to see the significance of banya differently, which is what I hope to share on the electronic pages of Banya Journal.

What is in store for the new Banya Journal?

This publication is, first and foremost, a way to share the joy of communal bathing with everyone.

At the same time, it is an invitation to fall into the rabbit hole of all things banya.

I have a variety of topics in the works. Here is a preview of what’s to come:

  • A guide for banya newcomers
  • Impact of banya on athletic performance
  • Cold water dousing and heat exposure
  • Recipes of banya-inspired cocktails
  • The battle of platza styles.

I am incredibly excited about the Banya Dialogues, a series of articles featuring conversations with people who profoundly understand the elements of the banya experience and culture.

The new Banya Journal aims to become an informative and entertaining publication for the community of Archimedes Banya and beyond.

That’s why I would love to hear your ideas! What topics interest you? Please let me know in the comments.

To sum up, the Banya Journal is now a reality.

New articles will be published every Friday, delivered with an Archimedes Banya newsletter, and linked to on our social media accounts.

One response to “Banya Journal: The New Beginning”

  1. Chris Crescibene Avatar
    Chris Crescibene

    I’m excited to see the return of the Banya Journal,

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: