Although I would consider myself fairly conservative in most areas, the hippies in the late 1960s are looking better and better as time goes on. No, I do not believe in free love or illegal drugs. But I do believe strongly in equality for all, freedom, and improving the quality of life. Although hydrotherapy dates back to the Roman Empire, the hippies modernized hydrotherapy with the use of wooden hot tubs, which were nothing more than wooden barrels filled with hot water. This marked the start of the evolution of hot tubs.
Although wooden hot tubs are still being marketed on a limited basis, the early models often leaked, which gave way to using different materials to contain the water. In the late 1970s, boat makers in southern climates began building fiberglass hot tubs, often called spas. These early units were usually installed into a wooden deck. The hot tub industry continued to grow in the early 1980s, as integrated hot tubs (sometimes called portable) came onto the scene. Portable hot tubs are hot tubs that have a wooden skirt surrounding them and can be moved, much like a piece of furniture. This development made hot tubs more affordable, eliminated the need for installation into a wood deck, and also allowed homeowners to take them when they moved to another house. With the pace of daily life increasing during this time, reducing stress became a big attraction. Manufacturers began to spring up everywhere and the race was on to build a better unit.
Today’s hot tubs are well-insulated and energy efficient with airtight spa covers. Multiple pump systems and filters are now available, as are sanitizing systems, automatic controls, and multiple other options.
The hot tub manufacturers are always striving to make better products to get a leg up on the competition, so look for improvements to continue in the hot tub industry.