Personal Oxygen System -- BetterThanAir

BetterThanAir, an Evergreen, Colo.-based company that makes a line of oxygen-consumption products including the oxygen bars popular in airports and nightclubs, has entered the outdoor market with its PO24U Personal Oxygen System. Basically a portable oxygen tank, the product was designed to be stashed in a backpack by athletes for a quick hit of oxygen when the need arises.

The company markets the PO24U to hikers, skiers and mountain climbers who fight fatigue and altitude sickness at high elevations. The device, which weighs less than a pound including a full tank of air, will fit in a jacket pocket, allowing the user to surreptitiously take breaths on a chairlift ride or during short breaks on the trail.

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Unlike tanks used on major mountaineering expeditions, the PO24U is not meant to be left on and free flowing. Instead, the 18-liter tanks of oxygen are designed to provide occasional relief at altitude or a quick burst of energy by oxygenating the bloodstream.

Left on continuously, the company’s replaceable 18-liter tank will provide about 20 minutes of air. This equals out to 300 – 400 individual breaths.

In addition to altitude-related activities, BetterThanAir says the PO24U will enhance workouts and make you stronger and more alert during activities. The company recommends its use for sports ranging from racquetball to weightlifting to trail running. Stress and jet lag can also be relieved with the product, according to the company.

The PO24U package includes the regulator device, a face mask and two tanks of oxygen.

I recently climbed Mt. Rainier and was looking forward to putting the PO24U to the test up high on the mountain’s snowfields and glaciers. Unfortunately, the airline would not allow BetterThanAir’s pressurized tanks on the plane.

At home, where the altitude is only about 1,000 feet above sea level, I tested the product before workouts to measure the benefits. While the product’s effects on my endurance during a workout were questionable, the thick breaths of nearly pure oxygen did perk me up, putting a definite spring in my step for the first few minutes into a run.

Price: $185; replacement tanks, $38.
Contact: BetterThanAir, 1-866-699-4363, http://www.betterthanair.com.

Posted by Mike - 02/08/2007 05:51 PM

we purchased the PO24U systems and have been trying to buy replacement tanks for the past 2 months. Better Than Air company has horrible customer service. They don’t return calls at all and even though they say they will respond to an email within 24 hours, they don’t.
The only response we received is that they are having trouble with their manufacturing and will not have the replacement tanks available for a while. They suggest buying one of their other systems. Fat chance since the PO24U systems were not cheap.

Posted by Justin - 06/03/2007 07:41 AM

Me too – I can’t get refills all of a sudden. Love the system…I’ve had it for over a year, but can’t find refills now… I’ve sent a few emails to better than air without any responses.

Posted by CHRIS KIMMONS - 01/07/2010 07:23 PM

Would like to try the 90% oxygen for my next ski trip in Colorado Jan 22nd, but you are not allowed to take it on the plane, is there a store in the Vail/Beavercreek area that I can buy some to try out?

Posted by SEMA KILIC - 07/14/2012 07:13 AM

Hi, I am living in Istanbul Turkey, How can I find the product in Turkey. Do you have a distributor in Turkey? thanks Sema

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