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Swedish bathers in naked shower outcry

Rebecca Martin · 28 Apr 2011, 15:44

Published: 28 Apr 2011 15:44 GMT+02:00

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In an open letter published in local Stockholm news paper Södra Sidan, a group of regular visitors to the Skärholmen public swimming pool have demanded that something be done about visitors refusing take showers and saunas in the buff

"This is a difficult subject to bring up, as it is often dismissed as prejudice, as if we are judging a specific group in society or pointing our finger at ‘immigrants’," the group wrote.

According to the authors, people with foreign backgrounds often flouted the rules posted on the walls of the swimming pool changing rooms by refusing to remove their swim suits or underpants in the showers and in the saunas, or for failing to shower at all before entering the sauna or gym.

The staff at the swimming pool charged with monitoring the situation seem to have ‘given up’ or are avoiding confrontation due to the ‘unpleasant behaviour’ of those that refuse to shower naked, the authors claimed.

“If this is a matter of timidity, they could always wear a towel wrapped around them in the sauna or turn away in the showers,” they wrote.

Thomas Lindell Taylor, manager of the public pool in Skärholmen, does not think that the writers of the article are right in their criticism.

"The article is identifying immigrants as the problem. I don’t agree with that," he told Södra Sidan.

Instead it could be a question of a clash between generations, according to Lindell Taylor.

In his view, younger visitors to the swimming pool are simply ignoring the rules.

Swimming teacher Lars Birdal agrees added that not everyone is comfortable with nudity, explaining that the pool is many ways is a reflection of society at large.

"The public pool is like a miniature society and the problems you meet outside the walls you also see within," Birdall told Södra Sidan.

Among visitors to the bath the opinions are mixed.

One Muslim visitor told the newspaper admitted to showering with his swimming trunks on and changing in a toilet stall in order to avoid undressing in front of others.

Another visitor said he is often irritated by the fact that people don’t take off their clothes before showering.

"Some people don’t care about the rules. It may have something to with their upbringing. But when I tell them off they start a fight with me. I am an immigrant to Sweden myself, but have been accused of trying to act ‘Swedish’. But all I want is for things to be clean and nice," he said.

Not everyone agrees that there is a problem with overdressing in the Skärholmen public pool showers.

“Perhaps some aren’t used to getting naked in public, but I really don’t think that is a problem here,” one visitor said.

Story continues below…

This is not the first controversy in Sweden revolving around appropriate swimming pool attire.

In 2008, the city of Gothenburg was ordered to pay damages to two Muslim mothers who were kicked out of a swimming pool for not removing their veils.

This led to some swimming pools renting out ‘burkinis’, a move considered more hygienic than allowing women to swim with their veils or regular clothes on.

And in 2009 swimming pools across the country were forced to take policy decisions on women bathing topless following pressure from the Bara Bröst network - which translates both as 'bare breasts' and 'just breasts' – arguing that if men can swim without a top on, women should be allowed as well.

Rebecca Martin (rebecca.martin@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

16:31 April 28, 2011 by Rick Methven
I go to the sauna every Friday evening. It is an end of the week relaxation. myself and most men strip off in the sauna some wear towels and only the ones who are embarrassed by the small size of their tackle wear swimming shorts
16:36 April 28, 2011 by Swedesmith
Simple, if you don't like the rules of the facility then either stay home or open your own place with your own rules.
16:46 April 28, 2011 by Lukestar1991
What the hell is the problem?? If people dont want to walk around naked in front of other people then that should be respected. I have never heard such utter macho-masculine nonsense in my life. The fact that these arseholes cannot except other peoples right to wear what they want is shameful. And they think they are men because they walk around naked at the swimming baths? what is all the fuss? They sound more like little boys wanting to be 'cool' at school.
16:48 April 28, 2011 by HYBRED
Reminds me of a old saying,"be careful what with wish for, you might get it".

Some may look better with their clothes on.
17:14 April 28, 2011 by Zhorka
Well, at least these modest chaps take shower before going to pool. Most US Americans never take shower before pool and may jump there in whatever clothes they have on.
17:21 April 28, 2011 by star10
What is wrong with being uncomfortable to be naked in front of other people? I personally don't like to be naked in front of other people. I wonder why you are forced to be naked in public if you want to bath. It is not too expensive to have curtain partitions in public swimming places. Have some respect to other's feelings too.
17:22 April 28, 2011 by Rap43
Lukestar1991 - it is likely not just the men who are upset. Chances are better than even that just as many women are upset.

When in Rome and all that - the rules are simple and clearly posted.

To me it is just foolishness to take a shower or a sauna with clothes on - you wouldn't do it at home and in a change-room it is the one wearing a bathing suit that is out of place.
17:54 April 28, 2011 by prince T
@rap43. In this so called Rome not only foreigners that are not willing to be naked in public place. I go naked in fron of strangers and i am not about to do so now.

why should some misguided minority tell us not to be naked or not. How many women go naked to swiming pool in Malmö after winning naked case.
17:59 April 28, 2011 by jostein
Well, we worked hard to make swedistan happen. Why are people acting surprised?
17:59 April 28, 2011 by laura ka baal
Nake people with Naked culture.
18:07 April 28, 2011 by space2
@ Lukestar1991, @star10, @prince T: you are not looking at this from the correct point of view.

1) You are not forced to be naked: you can stay home! If you choose to go to a public swimming pool, you have to follow the rules.

2) Rules have reasons behind them: the reason you have to shower naked and be in the sauna naked is the hygiene.

3) If you feel that you have the right to break the rule, because you don't feel comfortable being naked in front of other people, then nudists should go naked in the swimming pool itself as well... since they don't feel comfortable in clothes (I also would prefer swimming in nude... but I don't do it in public places because it's against the rules)

@prince T: What do you mean by "misguided minority" ?!
18:33 April 28, 2011 by Kaethar
I'm not comfortable with nudity so I'd wear a towel in the sauna and go to a pool with seperate showers. In the worst case scenario I'd go to the pool early so I can shower alone. Simple as that. Wearing clothes in these places is disgusting and unhygienic and the staff should definitely not ignore this rule breaking because they're afraid of "offending someone." :/
18:38 April 28, 2011 by Brtahan
Its more a cultural thing some people are born with values that they dont like showing their private parts ,its not about size Rick , ok why not walk naked on the beach in sweden ? you can get persecuted for this! the point about hygiene make a private bathrooms with doors? Swedish too go in the sauna in their shorts its only oldies who love to show their saggy balls. Whats the difference between a shorts and a Towel? both are cloths.
18:40 April 28, 2011 by calebian22
Chlorine from the water in your swimtrunks, vaporizes in the heat of the sauna, which can be an irritant to other people. Don't be rude, nude up!
18:42 April 28, 2011 by Njal
@ laura ka baal

"Nake people with Naked culture"

- yeah, but you like it here well enough Laura, despite your criticism....hypocrite.
18:59 April 28, 2011 by jan.petras
So let me get this straight: there are actually people not wanting to see women swim naked ?!?! ( Last phrase of the article).
19:05 April 28, 2011 by florbnot
It is clear that we are fully insane when we are arguing about forcing people to expose themselves in public
19:11 April 28, 2011 by Iraniboy
I know and see many Swedes who are uncomfortable to take of their shorts too but of course not as much as non-Swede.

Anyway it is not correct to say taking a shower with shorts will make it more unhygienic. It all depends on how you manage it and how much you spend under the shower. So their reasoning is wrong.
19:19 April 28, 2011 by David S
I don't get this. How is showering with your swim trunks on "unhygienic"?

Someone mentioned a problem with chlorine in the sauna. Fair enough. Wouldn't showering first, with swim trunks on, fix that problem?
19:21 April 28, 2011 by Tanskalainen
It is more than a religious phenomenon. It is, as the article stated a generational situation as well. I work in a secondary school and the boys have not showered after P.E. for years! The reason? Homophobia! I am not joking. If you ask the lads that is what they will tell you. This is a complete switch from the 1960's when I went to school, we didn't have a choice. We had to shower after P.E. every time and no one thought "Oh maybe a homosexual is looking at my penis!" Such a thought would not have entered our heads but these young guys think everything is gay.
19:24 April 28, 2011 by Rick Methven

"you can get persecuted for this"


Unfortunately the smiley's are not activated in this section otherwise I would have used one to mark my remark as tongue in cheek.

I am a member of a sports enter - Pool, Gym and Bastu. The rules are very simple, before going into the pool take a shower with your swimmers ON to wash away any nasties on your bodies and your swimmers. After swimming most people shower first with their swimmers on to get rid of the chlorine then finish off with a naked shower. Rules for the Bastu are to take a shower before going in. You are not to go from the pool into the Bastu without first showering as the Chlorine in the 70-80 C temperature does make your eyes smart. Other than that if you want to wear a towel or shorts in the bastu, its your choice.

Swedes do not have the same hangups about nakedness as a lot of other nationalities which where you get a culture clash. This morning I was taking a shower after my gym session and one of the local school classes was there having swimming lessons. A female teacher came into the male changing room and then into the shower where myself another man and one of her pupils was showering she just said that she had to come in to supervise as there was no male teacher on duty that day, nobody batted an eyelid.
20:07 April 28, 2011 by EP
Since i'm not gay, I don't like to undress in front of other blokes, as do most swedish guys (who in my opinion are gay or closet gays for the most part - just look how they dress - unless they're naked with other men)
20:33 April 28, 2011 by Brtahan

HAha well i did mean prosecuted and ofcourse not persecuted!!! you are right but its still feels wierd in a way .
20:39 April 28, 2011 by Douglas Garner
Perhaps there is something wrong with my not being comfortable being naked in the shower with other guys 3-6 year old daughters faces at penis height...

Where I grew up (in the States) the custom was to shower with your swim shorts on before going into the pool, and taking them off in the after shower. Naked bastu was always optional, but I find it a bit gross sitting on a bench in the buff after the last 20 guys did the same thing.
20:41 April 28, 2011 by Swedesmith
I'm not gay either and I don't give a rat's hiney about undressing in front of other dudes. I'm not ashamed. I've got the same stuff every other guy has...only bigger.
20:52 April 28, 2011 by space2
@Douglas Garner AFAIK you need to sit on a towel...

At least when once I was in Germany, a personel even reminded me that my legs should be on a towel as well.
21:06 April 28, 2011 by Tanskalainen
Well, I'm not gay either but EP must be HOT, HOT, HOT if he is so shy!
22:02 April 28, 2011 by blursd
I remember the first time I was invited to go to a sauna after I had moved to Sweden ... I'd been to saunas many times in the United States, and I really enjoy them so I was excited. I was a little surprised though when I walked into the sauna room with my boardshorts on only to find everyone there buck naked (men and women) -- it was a little bit of a culture shock for me. I sat there and thought about it for a couple seconds, and I figured "When it Rome ..." then took my boardshorts off. Personally, I found it a little strange at first, but really nudity is only an issue if you CHOOSE to make it an issue. Even though it was completely against the native cultural mores of where I came from I had no problem whatsoever adapting to the Swedish custom of nudity. Getting out of your comfort zone and trying something new every once in a while is a healthy thing. I got to the point where I really enjoyed Swedish saunas ... the fact people were nude didn't even register after a while, and felt completely normal and acceptable to me.

I do have to say though (as an after note) that I do have a big problem with the showering issue brought up in this article. I swim a lot in public pools, and just about nothing gets me more upset than when someone jumps right in the pool without showering off first. It's not just official policy ... it's a matter of common consideration. Even if you feel "clean" your body has oil, dirt, hygiene products, etc ... all over it. When you get in the pool all that stuff comes off, and then creates a film of nasty gunk that floats on the surface. It wouldn't even be so bad if it was just one person doing it every day, but in most public pools there are hundreds of people who use it every 24 hours. If even a quarter of those people don't shower off before getting in the collective body gunk that collects in that pool can get quite nasty. And, of course, if you're swimming you don't have any way to avoid the surface of the water to come up for air. That means every time you side breathe you're probably sucking in a little bit more of that nasty body gunk floating on the top of the pool. I don't know about you, but I'd prefer not to have someone's sweat, body oil, dirt, etc ... in my mouth. The same thing goes for transitioning from the sauna (or steam room) to the pool -- just because you took a shower before you entered the sauna doesn't mean you can just jump directly into the pool. I know why people do it, but the same principle applies as showering before you enter anything for the first time. What has your body been doing the entire time you've been in the sauna? Bringing sweat, oil, and other gunk on your skin to the surface, so when you jump in the pool guess what you leave behind?

Please do everyone a favor and shower (and shower well) before you enter ... you're not the only person whose using it. Don't treat the pool like your own personal bath tub ...
22:51 April 28, 2011 by swedejane
Next people will complain about peeing in the pool...geesh.
23:29 April 28, 2011 by local-aam
Please Kick out the Muslims from such places where nudity is a manner. Muslims are not allowed to visit such places. On the other hand, the authority should think about people who like sauna and pools with rules "NO NUDITY". Typical Swedes think that the Govt. is importing immigrant without any profit. But in fact, they are contributing this country in many positive ways. The Govt. is not stupid, people should know this.
23:33 April 28, 2011 by superturbo
But I want to wear my burqa in the sauna :P
00:31 April 29, 2011 by seagull
This is of course complete nonsense. Stupid rules are there to be broken. I love sweden, but if I want to shower, or sauna in my swim trunks I will. If there is a valid reason not to, then fine, but there isn't.....

!!!But it isn't clean...so I take of the shorts I am about to swim in, shower, then put them on again and then swim in them...huh

!!!It's unhygienic in the sauna!!! - So having my sweaty arse IS???

Yes, it is stupid to wear full body outfits in the baths...fine, yes, veils and full face terror-masks are ridiculous...fine. But wearing a pair of cotton shorts rather than a cotton towel....give me a break.
01:38 April 29, 2011 by bira
It is a stupid rule and should be completely up to the individual whether they want to shower or sauna nude or not at a public pool. This rule has nothing to do with what is hygienic or not and the fact that people are outraged about this just shows the Swedish lemming mentality - born and raised there so don't bother telling me I'm wrong...I have NEVER been in a society so anal about following rules and doing what everyone else does. Damn, it makes things boring.
01:43 April 29, 2011 by Boyfriend
The pool guys should make a separate small small shower rooms like in Asian countries where people take shower naked and no gays can watch them or follow them :). If this is matter of respect then respect others. They are many immigrants who get naked shower and some do not it is not a big deal. you take your shower and go home earlier :D or they want to measure the immigrants Joysticks :P
01:47 April 29, 2011 by BritishNaturism
The Pool Water Treatment Advisory Group - experts in maintaining pool hygiene - recommend that swimmers should be encouraged to shower naked before entering the pool. This is stated on page 35 of their report into preventing the spread of cryptosporidia; a micro-organism that is not killed off by the normal chemical treatments used in pools. See: http://www.pwtag.org/researchdocs/Used%20Ref%20docs/57%20Cryptosporidia%20methodology%20of%20actions.pdf

The same would obviously apply to saunas. Costumes, apart from containing soap residues that contaminate the chemicals used are also a potential breeding ground for germs that is far worse than our skin. They also are responsible for the lint that blocks a pools filters and requires regular clearing. At the same time, costumes provide little or no protection for the wearer or the surfaces on which they sit and certainly no protection in the water. Naturists normally sit on towels, both for comfort and for the greater protection they afford thanks to their thickness.

The Swedes have it right!
02:42 April 29, 2011 by Stickeroo
For all of you saying that these rules are ok, you're all a bunch of queer hammer hawks!

I went to the public pool here in Sweden ONCE. Never EVER again. Believe me when I say I'm not the least bit shy when it comes to walking around naked. But these places are just disgusting. Bare a$$ed guys sitting on the benches in the sauna, have some decency and put something under your dirty sweaty a$$ before you sit down. And then they lay there all spread eagle too. Not to mention the dirty old men that keep staring at your junk.

This is the most ridiculous article I've ever heard of in my life. I could understand if people we're wearing their jeans and sweaters into the shower, but bathing suit? Anyone supporting the sauna and shower nude rule is obviously a disgusting pedophile waiting for children to get in there so they can catch a glimpse. They should be glad us "immigrants" don't wanna get naked, most of them would go into depression when they see how much size they lack. Bloody skinners!
07:39 April 29, 2011 by truthworthy
I think that is the stupidest complain i have read so far about immigrants. Not everyone is comfortable with getting naked in front of others. People have different cultures and feelings towards this issue and no one has the right to force someone to get naked.

So they want to tell us to remove our underpants or bathing suits, just because others are naked? this is retarded.
08:54 April 29, 2011 by Rebel
What, Swedish men want to see us immigrants naked? Now I am even more adament about keeping my shorts on in the sauna!
09:07 April 29, 2011 by technoviking
I'm not sure why wearing shorts would be an issue if they shower thoroughly first.

I know our immigrant friends can be "hygiene challenged" so is this just all code for go take a shower you smelly bastard?
09:23 April 29, 2011 by engagebrain
Many people in Sweden feel the same about driving regulations.

This is Sweden, so either obey the rules or,while obeying the rules, try to change the rules.

The idea is that only clean bodies go into the swimming pool and sauna. You cannot clean your rumpa, the dirtiest part of your body, if it is covered.

Showering in public ensures that everyone washes themselves.
10:06 April 29, 2011 by helveeta
There are other problems in the pools too. I was in the women's change room a couple of months ago with my young son and was just getting ready to take my bathing suit off when I noticed a man (Arab or Middle Eastern descent) standing in the change room. I said to him that he had to leave and he refused. He pointed to his 6 or 7 year old daughter who was changing. He didn't speak Swedish so I was talking to him in English which he barely spoke. He wouldn't leave his daughter in the room alone (or take her into the men's or a toilet room) so he was going to stand in the women's change room where the other women (too embarrassed to say anything) were standing around covering themselves. I started losing it and yelling at him to get out, he kept saying "I will leave" yet he wasn't budging. I went and told the pool staff there was a man in the women's room who wouldn't leave. No one seemed to really think it was a serious situation. FINALLY I got a man to come up to help me. Just then the Arab man left the women's room and walked away fast. The staff member said to me, "well he's gone now." I said "you have to tell him he can't do this" to which he said, "he wouldn't understand anyways." I called the city and filed a police report but they couldn't do anything of course.

Welcome to Sweden!
10:32 April 29, 2011 by flintis
The worst thing is the disgusting habit people have of wearing filthy, shitty underpants under their swimmimg trunks.

This problem with other nationalities refusing to abide by regulations also happens at naturist sites.

@stickeroo:- were you not born naked? Neh probably not in a roo's pouch maybe.
10:35 April 29, 2011 by nolikegohome
I stopped going to Lundby Badet in Hisingen Göteborg when i saw women awimming in the pool with the clothes on. I protested but they told me that if we become strict these women will stop comming to the pool and stay home and get fatter and fatter. We need them to do some excercise to improve their general health. I do not buy this. The rules must be followed by all. I say stay home and swim in your bath tub instead.
10:37 April 29, 2011 by Shibumi
My mother had a mastectomy and is missing a breast. There is no way in hell she will expose her scarred body, not even to me. Should she be forced to choose between going naked or staying home?
10:40 April 29, 2011 by nolikegohome
@helveeta your point is well taken but i have a little point to make. In your story there was a man in the womens changing room. In my story i want to point out that there are woman cleaners in the mens changing and shower room in several swimming pools in Sweden. She is ofcourse welcome to watch the men showering naken. OR WHAT? JEEZ!!!
11:00 April 29, 2011 by helveeta
@nolikegohome are you serious?? That is strange.

Also, I think that there should be a few private changing stalls and showers in all the pools for those who want privacy. I myself was raised in a household where nudity was not normal and it's been uncomfortable for me to be naked in front of other women--also I don't like seeing 80 year old, overweight women's junk in my face some days. I have gotten somewhat used to it though I just change as quickly as I can.
11:31 April 29, 2011 by HYBRED

A 80yr old womans junk would probably be hot to a 90yr old man.

I wasn't born into a open nudity houseold as well. However nudity doesn't bother me one way or another. As evidence above, some are attractive nude and some are not. We all were delt a different set of cards when it comes to physican appearence, whether it is natural, a doctors scalpel, or other.

But the rules are rules and there for a reason. There is the option of swimming in a lake, river, or sea.
12:17 April 29, 2011 by bow290
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
13:08 April 29, 2011 by jamesblish
So Lindell Taylor doesn't want to blame a certain group of people. But he's got no problem blaming "the young"? How's that for a double standard.

Look, everyone who goes swimming regularly has seen this in action. I don't know about the women because I'm a guy and I don't change in the women's locker room (if only). But as for us guys, the ones who won't take off their underwear etc. are mostly "foreign looking" men, by the looks of them I'd say middle eastern but I obviously can't say for sure. That's the way it is and it obviously has to do with them having a different idea of what is acceptable in terms of nudity etc. Be it for religious reasons, cultural reasons or whatever. This happens at my gym too btw, dudes will shower with boxers on (!) But it's not my problem in the gym so I don't care.

It IS my problem in the swimming pool however, because I don't want to take a swim in their germs, as previous posters have already pointed out. That is why we have these rules. When the water gets too dirty they have to up the chlorine percentage and that's not a good thing for health reasons.

You can like these rules or not but they are there for a reason and if you're too shy to get naked in front of other men (who by the way don't give a s**t about you and your body), well then I think you have a problem and you should work on that. Seriously, if you're at the pool alone you're a grown-a** man anyway, so get over it. You see, you're in Sweden now and you will obey our rules. If you can't do that then maybe you're living in the wrong country. That's really all there is to it. If you can't accept this then don't go for a swim. Or build your own pool, get all your boxer-showering friends and swim around on your own.

I seriously doubt anyone of these people would complain if they got thrown out because they're breaking the rules. I'm almost confident they wouldn't. The problem probably lies with the rest of us, who don't seem to have the guts to stand up for the beliefs and values that our country was built upon. Values that has made it a good enough country to attract foreigners in the first place.

Sweden has worked for decades to become less puritanical, less religious etc. and I personally think that's a great thing. There is no shame to a naked body and I applaud the fact that we strip naked in the shower, that we have male cleaners working in the ladies room and vice versa, etc. We are ahead of the world in this, we should CHERISH that. Doing so would be completely uncontroversial in most other countries. But not here apparently, and it's embarrassing. In our effort to be overly diplomatic, we are letting go of what matters the most.

I think that as citizens of this country, there are some things we have a right to, as human beings. Going for a swim in a public pool, however, is not one of those things. Get some guards into the locker rooms and throw these people out. I take it as a personal insult if they don't.
13:09 April 29, 2011 by expatjourno
Stupid. I shower at home in the morning before going to the pool.
14:47 April 29, 2011 by Purple_Rache

Yep, I moved here just so I could shower naked in a room full of strangers. You may think that Sweden is forward thinking for having female cleaners in men's changing rooms and vice versa, but you miss the loopholes. Since Swedes don't expect anyone to be interested in their naked bodies so it then becomes natural to them to think that strangers are definitely not interested in them. That is when the system gets taken advantage of, like helveeta said, with the man who was standing in the women's showers waiting for his daughter. It could have been an innocent misunderstanding, but I certainly wouldn't have liked it, and the pool workers failed to see the problem.

I think the hygiene rule is a valid one, but instead of trying to enforce the rules whilst making no compromises, would it really be that difficult to install cubicles? I personally have never been to a Swedish swimming pool/sauna, precisely because I don't want to shower naked in front of people. We had to do this in PE in school, and at camp, and the whole experience was one of forced compliance. Not something I want to repeat.

I think it's particularly bad that they don't have cubicles available in the bigger, tourist attraction style swimming pools, since the target audience is foreigners, they are definitely going to want cubicles. To not even have it as an option is ridiculous.
15:39 April 29, 2011 by jamesblish

"Yep, I moved here just so I could shower naked in a room full of strangers."

- This is a silly comment because you know exactly what I meant by that.

"That is when the system gets taken advantage of, like helveeta said, with the man who was standing in the women's showers waiting for his daughter. It could have been an innocent misunderstanding, but I certainly wouldn't have liked it, and the pool workers failed to see the problem."

- Of course not, I wouldn't have liked it either. But that guy wasn't a cleaner, he was a parent. That is a clear violation of the rules and the guards should have had him reported so he couldn't come back. I don't see why he did it anyway, most men take their baby daughter with them to the guys' locker and mothers take the boys. Small children don't care anyway.

Furthermore, it is perfectly acceptable to have cleaners of both sexes working both locker rooms. D**n, I remember back in the army we had a girl do her military service with us guys. Only chick among 20 guys. She showered naked with us, no problem. It was funny for like 10 seconds and then no one cared ever again. This might sound like a small deal but at the end of the day, this is about core values.

"I think the hygiene rule is a valid one, but instead of trying to enforce the rules whilst making no compromises, would it really be that difficult to install cubicles? I personally have never been to a Swedish swimming pool/sauna, precisely because I don't want to shower naked in front of people."

- No, because it's simply unswedish for reasons already stated. Seriously, I will not have my country tainted by overly pruish and puritanical values. All the people who can't stand getting naked amongst others can get their own place and go there. If there's a big enough group of people interested in paying for that, then go right ahead, I don't care. But not in public pools, no way. That's not how we do it here and you are in a clear minority on this.

We have a huge "adventure bath" type water park where I grew up btw, and it's pulling in awesome profits and have been doing so for 20 years. No cubicles. So apparently it's working. Like I said, you go ahead and build a private pool or whatever, and you're free to design it any way you want and make your own rules as long as they don't break the law. But as long as we're talking public pools, the answer is no.
17:56 April 29, 2011 by technoviking
@ jamesblish

"I remember back in the army we had a girl do her military service with us guys. Only chick among 20 guys. She showered naked with us, no problem."

What the nuts army was that?!
20:15 April 29, 2011 by jamesblish
I fail to see what's nut about it. Afaik that's common practice in many armies around the world that allow women to participate.
21:58 April 29, 2011 by Stickeroo

Born in a kangaroo's pouch? I'm confused as to whether that is an insult or not. But hey, I'd rather be born inside a pouch, than grow up to become a pedophile, hammer-hawk, rapist like those advocating that people HAVE to shower naked. The only people I shower naked with are my wife, and your mother.
22:36 April 29, 2011 by redfish
They could enforce the nudity requirement.

But, ON THE OTHER HAND, the people who are going naked and are uncomfortable by those who aren't can choose to cover themselves.

Don't blame it on the people who are covering themselves, though, because its the people who are naked that have the issue.
22:55 April 29, 2011 by Uggla
I don't like to get nakes in front of people as well and I am not an immigrant, just modest. You can wash with a swim suit on easily.

Just because someone is naked does not mean they are clean!
22:56 April 29, 2011 by johnny1939
I do not like being in the nude among stranger or even w/ people that I know and I am as Swedish as knäckebröd. I do think most people are more attractive w/ their clothes on. I have no problem w/ people showering w/ their suits on as long as they shower. I will wear a towel in the sauna or steambath. Let people be!!!!
00:05 April 30, 2011 by technoviking
@ jamesblish

Only army I know of that would do that is in a porno movie... Sounds funny but also like a recipe for disaster.

Swedish army?
00:07 April 30, 2011 by wakak
So in summary, Swedish nationalistic pride resides in showing one's private parts to the whole world. I do hope there are other reasons (but I am do not see any so far).
00:20 April 30, 2011 by redfish
@wakak :

The way I interpret it is that some people's progressive attitude about being naked relies on everyone else being naked -- else they revert to the same prudishness they accuse others of.
11:29 April 30, 2011 by Purple_Rache
I am glad at least that not every Swedish person thinks nudity is something to be forced upon everyone. Worse than being in a room full of strangers naked is the idea of the family sauna/swimming occasions. I have no desire to see my in-laws in the nip, thanks very much. And where we live is a pretty small community, so even going to our pool I'm sure I'd see people I know. The whole idea makes me cringe, and revives the old school feelings again.
12:11 April 30, 2011 by Rebel
Am i the only one here that believes that one solution could be to make the showers and saunas mixed sex? I have been to nude beaches and have no problem with nudity, but I feel quite uncomfortable being naked in a room of naked men -- sort of has a Roman feel to it if you know what I mean.
13:36 April 30, 2011 by Thompsuleme
A rule is a rule..simple. If you cannot follow simple rules then dont turn up!
14:31 April 30, 2011 by jamesblish
Give me a break. Nobody is forcing anyone to get naked. There is always the ocean if you're too sensitive or pruish to take a shower amongst other people.
17:03 April 30, 2011 by Streja
Please, no cubicles. I hate British style pools. :(
19:34 April 30, 2011 by Rebel
Thompsuleme, maybe some people are not conformist sheep, ever think of that?
20:45 April 30, 2011 by jamesblish
Yeah, we are all conformist sheep over here, for following simple rules and regulations. I wish we were all rebels and indidualists like you, who drove drunk, littered, stole s**t and refused to clean up before a bath. Yeah, stick it to the man!
03:22 May 1, 2011 by redfish
@jamesblish, the people who are bothered by those who don't go naked are just as prudish. "Oh no somebody who's not naked looking at me naked".
09:00 May 1, 2011 by Thompsuleme
It is a public pool where personal hygene is essential. The excuses given not to conform to the rules dont hold water. It is the same in this society generally i.e If ones sacred religion or background does not Permit one to show ones body to others or any of the sort, THEN STAY AWAY FROM THE PUBLIK UTILITIES! DO NOT IMPOSE YOURSELF ON A SOCIETY THAT OPENS ITS ARMS TO HELP AND RECEIVE YOU.

@ Helveete, It must have been both shocking and scary for you and your chid. Such things should never be allowed to happen! That man is an absolute disgrace.

and i am an INVANDRARE ! I love Sweden.
11:01 May 2, 2011 by Shibumi
To all of you "rules are rules" types... should my mother who has had a breast removed due to cancer be forced to choose between exposing her scarred body to strangers or staying home... or could a) she be allowed to shower in her swimwear, or b) public pools could make 1 shower "private" so it is shielded from view?
16:51 May 2, 2011 by jamesblish
If there was a problem with disfigured people showering amongst others, don't you think that would've been brought up a long time ago? People have had operations for decades, why is this suddenly an issue now?
18:42 May 2, 2011 by sentenced-2-sweden
I think the swedes are bordering on the pathetic side at the best of times, however I think they've got this one right.

Wash the germs and bacteria out of your arse crack and under your ballbag before getting in the pool or sauna and and wash off everyone elses when you get out. It's about hygiene
08:31 May 3, 2011 by e1zorro
I do go to this particular pool ( mainly for my daughter's benefit ). As a "reserved Brit" I'll admit that I'm uncomfortable with nudity infront of others - however I respect the rules of the pool that are there for a good reason.

It's not noted in the article, but Skärholmen is one of the few pools that don't treat the water with Chlorine ( they use a Salt compound ). This makes for a pleasant bathing experience, but does mean you have to be extra careful about hygene.
12:26 May 5, 2011 by flintis
@stickeroo:- ur welcome to shower naked with my mother, she's 79 & probably wouldn't notice you.

As for your wife, she'd prefer it if you'd use the soap when you shower!!
13:32 May 5, 2011 by tuerd1982
@ star10

Well said.
18:44 May 6, 2011 by LoeEaredGaloot
Check out U.S. highschool hygiene issues from about 5 years back at southern schools where poor hygiene in certain athlete populations has lead to widespread bacterial infections of football teams, including flesh eating types. I believe it was on 20:20 or a similar show.

You shower, you stay clean, before and after swimming, and you provide fewer vectors for diffusion and fewer opportunities for development of chemical resistant forms of these rapidly mutating microbes.

Fear of body form and resulting lazy/shy hygiene habits are an infantile behavior mode that must be adequately remonstrated with until _children_ learn to overcome their phobias and act with responsibility towards the greater population of which they are a part.

It has no place in adult behavior at all.
09:00 January 30, 2012 by tnbms16
It is culturally unacceptable for a woman to sunbathe topless in public in Saudi Arabia, and people of other backgrounds in that country should respect that.

By the same token, it is culturally unacceptable in the Nordic countries to enter a public swimming pool or sauna without having first showered naked, and people of other backgrounds in that country should respect that.
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