Sometimes referred to as “bubblers”, air baths have greatly increased in popularity within recent years. There are several reasons for this trend. Firstly, air baths, or more technically referred to as thermo-air massage, represent a newer technology than whirlpools. Air baths utilize a blower that generates millions of tiny air bubbles through very small air jets in the bottom of the tub. These bubbles caress the body as they move toward the surface of the water and revitalize the bather with a light, full-body massage.
Secondly, because air baths provide a gentler massage than whirlpools, the elderly can also enjoy and benefit from this form of hydrotherapy, an important factor in light of the increasing elderly population in the US.
The third reason for the increased popularity of air baths is that many people believe that air baths are “cleaner” than whirlpools. They assume that because air baths do not use a pump and pipes, they cannot harbor elements that can breed bacteria. The truth is that both air baths and whirlpools can be “clean” or problematic. It depends on how both are engineered and maintained. And MTI excels in the engineering and hygienic maintenance of both whirlpools and air baths.
Air baths provide a combination of therapeutic elements necessary for optimal relaxation. Water offers the effects of weightlessness and relaxes muscles. Heat relaxes the body to make it more receptive to the benefits of the massage. The movement of air activates the lymphatic system and blood circulation. The combination of water, heat and air movement create an incomparable therapeutic effect and offers physical relaxation and even relief of pain related to ailments such as arthritis, osteoarthritis and rheumatism.
Air bath therapy produces an effect of well-being throughout the whole body by stimulating the production of our natural analgesic hormones known as endorphins. Because of the stimulating but non-aggressive action of air bath massage, the elderly can also enjoy and benefit from it.
MTI offers 2 unique air bath systems for Boutique and Designer Collection tubs: Air Massage (20 air jets) and Air Massage Elite (30 air jets). Both systems provide a light full-body massage through air jets on the bottom of the bathing well. An unobtrusive electronic keypad allows adjustment of the speed and intensity of the air massage from soft and caressing to more vigorous. Or you can select the wave effect, which alternates the speed between strong and soft to create a very efficient lymphatic massage.
Both MTI air bath systems are thoughtfully engineered. The air jets are appropriately called “illusion” jets because they are barely visible and absolutely flush with the bottom of the bathing well. This design allows for optimized placement of the air jets for maximum performance and therapeutic effectiveness, without sacrificing bather comfort or compromising the aesthetic beauty of the bath. Both systems caress the body with millions of relaxing air bubbles provided by a quiet blower with a ceramic heating element which pre-warms the air to body temperature. As the air bubbles rise from the bottom, they cling to the skin and open the pores, drawing the capillaries to the surface and thereby increasing blood circulation and detoxifying the bather.
Complementing the air bath massage in most air bath models is an integrated aromatherapy diffusion system, which enables the application of this centuries-old therapy. See animated demonstration of Air Bath with Integrated Aromatherapy Diffusion System.
Air Massage Elite increases the luxury level by including ten additional air jets. Air Massage Elite also adds the benefits of chromatherapy provided by digitally-controlled and adjustable underwater LED lighting.
For specifications and descriptions of BASICS® air bath systems, click here.
As described above, all MTI air baths are engineered for maximum therapeutic benefit. By contrast, other manufacturer systems available use air distribution ports or a channel system around the perimeter of the bathing well. With these other systems, only a percentage of the air bubbles rising will actually come in contact with the body, and the aesthetics of the bathing vessel are affected. The channel system has the additional disadvantage of providing uneven air distribution, which is especially noticeable at lower speeds. It is also difficult to keep sanitary. By contrast, MTI’s air bath systems are inherently hygienic, by design: Unique plastic air jet nozzles and housings prevent water and residue from reaching the fiberglass backing of the bath. Built-in check valves are designed to allow the air produced by the blower out but prevent any water from coming in. An automatic purge cycle activates 7 minutes after the water has drained out of the tub. The blower turns on and blows air through the air lines, removing any water that may be in the top portion of the jet nozzle. The check valve has already prevented any water from entering the air line. This underscores MTI’s thoroughness in producing systems that are hygienically sound.
So if air bath hydrotherapy sounds like a match to your wants and a solution to your needs, let MTI build it for you, just the way you want it. Your air bath system will be designed and built for aesthetics, maximum therapeutic benefit, comfort and hygiene.
Download MTI’s White Paper “Air Baths: Fact and Fiction”