Bathing in Japan is a leisurely, ritual that is not hurried. In America, we tend to prefer the quickness of a morning shower. We miss out on the tension relief that only a soak in a deep tub can offer Although public bathhouses are not accessible here as they are in Japan, we can recreate the same type of experience in our own home.
The key to Japanese bathing is to clean before you enter the bath. If you have a separate shower, you can achieve this by installing a small wooden stool, and wooden slats for the floor. You’ll want a bucket of water (drawn from the tub) to scrub with a brush. At this time you would you use your soap and washcloth, getting as clean as you possibly can. The next step is to enter the bathtub.
A Japanese bath is deep and considered a soaking tub. You can add bath salt or bombs, but that is all. The object is to soak, relax and to meditate. Lighting can be low, either dimmed or with candles with incense in cherry blossom for the ambiance of Japan.
After soaking, then you return to the shower to clean again. Afterwards, you step back into the bathtub. This practice is repeated, and the result is the feeling of serenity, and your troubles wash down the drain.