Every custom home I build these days has at least one custom built non-manufactured larger shower in them. If there is only one of these showers it is usually in the master bathroom ensuite. In every one of them we have installed a bench for people right in the shower.
The shower bench has evolved from a small triangle in the corner that held your shampoo bottles off the floor to what it is today, a multipurpose seat that does many things for many different people.
You might wonder what people need with a bench or seat in their shower; you must understand that the modern shower does more than just sprinkle water from a single shower head.
Showers today have multiple heads that are more like a carwash and less like a traditional shower, you don’t have to stand in the middle of the shower to have the water wash over you and keep you warm. You can have directed water spray on you while you sit happily on the bench from in wall jets that supply you with water horizontally or you can have multiple heads in the ceilings depending on how big the shower stall is made. Since you don’t have to stay in one exact spot then you don’t have to worry about ever getting cold from of being out of the main spray from the shower head.
A shower bench is considered multipurpose because every person will use it differently. Women like to use it to help them shave their legs; you can never have enough space when doing that acrobatic feat.
With people opting for steam units for their showers this allows them a place to sit or lie down and enjoy some relaxing time without the actual shower functioning as a shower.
The bench also acts as a place that you can store your shampoo bottles either on top of it or underneath if you create a cubby hole to hold them.
As people age getting in and out of a shower can become a problem, with a bench in your shower you walk in and sit down, when you want to get out you just stand back up, no worrying about slipping and falling or having to bend down for anything as everything can be on the bench with you.
There are many ways to build a shower bench, some people build them out of wood and then wrap them in waterproofing and cement board so that they can be tiled, others use foam products that they can carve and shape then tile, I like to use patio stones made out of concrete for my base and then tile.
Whatever shape or size of shower you design keep an eye towards adding a bench, the cost is not high but the payback is long term.
Village Builders Inc.