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Portable Saunas: How To Enjoy True Convenience

Apr 11, 2008
Saunas provide tremendous health benefits including improved circulation, skin tone, breathing and relaxation. Despite their many attributes, saunas are not accessible enough! You either have to go to a health club or have one installed in your home. There is an alternative, though. Portable saunas allow you to take one almost anywhere including your home, a trip, or even your office!

Portable saunas come in two basic styles. The first is the folding type, a box-like structure that one person can sit in, and it is truly portable. The other type look like traditional saunas with a wood lining, doors, and benches. This second type is portable in the sense that any large piece of furniture is: you can take it with you when you move, but you wouldn't want to haul it on a regular basis.

Folding Saunas

The folding sauna is economical and practical. It folds up into a compact package that can be easily transported. It sets up quickly and no special plumbing is required. The only electrical connection needed is a wall socket.

You sit in the folding sauna with your head and hands protruding from the unit. It fits snugly around your neck and has slits for your hands which allow you to read, watch TV or talk on the phone, all of which are impossible with regular saunas.

Folding saunas uses Far Infrared (FIR) as the heat source. FIR is different from convective heat sources because it heats people and objects rather than the air in between. Infrared is in the natural spectrum of light and therefore completely natural. It is the type of heat that provides most of the warmth from the sun.

FIR heat passes deeply into the body tissues where it promotes increased blood circulation and metabolism. Proponents of FIR say that causes the body to break down toxins and promote healing. Whether or not this is true, FIR offers an efficient heat source that is ideal for portable saunas.

Pre-built Saunas

There is no doubt about the convenience of folding types, but they do not suffice when more authentic sauna experience is desired. Fortunately there is another type of portable sauna that is closer to the geunine article. Pre-builts are two- or three piece units that can be put together in less than a half hour and placed almost anywhere. They offer the look and feel of traditional saunas right down to the wooden benches. As with the folding types, pre-builts simply plug into a regular wall outlet to supply electricity to the heater and lights.

Like portable saunas, pre-builts usually use Far Infrared (FIR) heaters as their heat source. Pre-builts are available in a variety of sizes that fit between one and four occupants. Accessories such as CD players are also offered by many manufacturers.


The heat build-up in folding saunas does not compare to regular types. The thin walls are not able to hold the same level of heat. Pre-built saunas are insulated so their heat build-up is similar, but the box-like structure (especially of one person units) may make some people feel claustrophobic.


The advantage of folding saunas is their tremendous versatility. Now one can be set up almost anywhere. They are true space-savers. As soon as a bath is finished, the unit can be conveniently stored in a closet or under the bed. Pre-built saunas also have their advantages. Even though they are less portable than the folding type, they still allow the unit to be moved if necessary. Both types allow you to enjoy all the health benefits of a sauna without the inconvenience or expense involved in installing a full-size unit.
About the Author
Mike Hirn is a longtime steam enthusiast. His website supplies a wealth of information about the construction, use and health benefits of home saunas and steam showers.
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