The times when the 9-to-5 was the only option are long gone. Yay! Now you can work from the comfort of your home, which is excellent. Not so great is the fact that you most probably spend 10 and more hours hunched over your desk. Even if you have that fancy height adjustable standing desk, your lifestyle is still sedentary. Everyday stress also takes its toll on your health. No, we’re not suggesting that you should quit your job and move to the woods.
Massage will do.
Then again, what if you don’t have enough time and money for the best massage spas? It’s easy: get your massage chair and enjoy all its benefits including stress and anxiety relief, muscle relaxation, and lowering your blood pressure. Of course, if you want all this, you need to buy a massage chair that will fit your needs.
Here’s a list with all the necessary information you require to make the best choice. We bring you a detailed compilation of both editors’ and users’ reviews to help you with this critical decision.
- 1 The therapeutic effects of Massage Chairs
- 2 A Complete Guide to Buying a Massage Chair and Its Important Features
- 3 Best massage chair reviews (2017)
- 4 Best budget-friendly massage chair
The therapeutic effects of Massage Chairs
What’s a home spa or even a living room without a massage chair? This comfy piece of furniture is exactly what you need after a long day at work or a strenuous workout session. Sit back, relax, and unwind while enjoying not only a pleasant massage but also numerous therapeutic effects.
Relaxes the muscles
By improving blood flow, massage reduces muscle tightness and helps sore muscles relax. Strenuous exercise can result in small tears in muscle fibers, subsequently leading to inflammation. Massage has been found to reduce the release of cytokines, proteins responsible for inflammation, thus relieving the pain.
Massage chairs stimulate blood circulation, thus helping your muscles and tissues to absorb nutritional elements. Additionally, this will increase the level of oxygen in your cells, rejuvenate them, and give you more energy.
Stimulates the lymphatic system
The primary function of your lymphatic system is to remove waste and fluid build-up from your body and boost your immunity. Massage stimulates the lymph flow, and if we know that a clogged lymphatic system is a risk factor for numerous chronic diseases, including cancer, it’s clear that a massage chair is an investment in your health
Reduces post-operative adhesions and edema
Adhesions and edema frequently occur during the post-operative process, and massage is exactly what the doctor ordered. Besides that, it can prevent the forming of scar tissue by stimulating the production of collagen, the protein that gives the skin, blood vessels, and muscle elasticity and whose role is to replace dead or damaged cells.
Improves the range of motion
Muscle stiffness and tension also decrease the range of motion and flexibility of your joints. Massage improves the ROM by increasing the tissue temperature, alleviating the pain, reducing the swelling, and removing fluid build-up.
Speeds up Post-Workout Recovery
While you’re working out, your muscles are practically broken down, and while you’re resting your body repairs the damaged muscle fiber. Massage promotes the growth of mitochondria in skeletal muscle whose role is to turn glucose into the energy necessary for cell and tissue repair and speeds up the whole process.
After only 15 minutes of massage, your body starts releasing endorphins and other “feel good” chemicals, dubbed as the happiness hormones, and their positive effects may last up to 48 hours. Apart from lifting your spirits, endorphins will also boost your immune system, reduce stress, and even slow down the aging process.
A Complete Guide to Buying a Massage Chair and Its Important Features
If you want to enjoy all the health benefits of a massage chair, you need to pick the best one. Easier said than done. With a plethora of various features that the latest models of massage chairs offer, this can be a complicated process. Here’s an overview of the most common functionalities so that you can get an idea what all these specifications mean.
Although this feature doesn’t mean that you’ll experience weightlessness, it will still make you feel like an astronaut. Namely, while you’re in this so-called anti-gravity position, with your feet elevated at the same level as your heart, just like astronauts during the launch, your body is relieved from all that pressure that gravity puts on it. A Zero-G chair is exceptionally beneficial for alleviating back pain, improving circulation, muscle relaxation, and lymph drainage.
For the massage you get to be as customized to your particular body type, this feature uses sensors to identify the size and shape of your body curves, and tailor the best and most accurate massage treatment.
Heaters are excellent for alleviating all kinds of aches and pains. They can be especially useful for the lumbar region, as well as for relaxing the muscles.
As its name suggests, this function helps your back and your muscle stretch, thus improving their flexibility and mobility. It’s worth noting that the state-of-the-art technology prevents any injuries that are possible during stretching exercises.
Airbags are located throughout a massage chair, and it’s their purpose to make you feel comfortable and to mimic the movements of hands during the massage. They improve your circulation and alleviate muscle tension.
No massage would be complete without pampering your tired and sore feet. Foot rollers take the whole foot massage to a whole new level, as they provide a more intensive and deeper massage than airbags.
Since all of us have different preferences and needs, this feature lets you control the intensity of the pressure, so that you can get the most of your massage chair.
Rollers vs. Vibrations
Budget massage chairs usually come with the so-called vibrating option, which doesn’t provide the real massage, but still, has therapeutic effects. More expensive chairs are equipped with rollers which enables deeper and more effective massage.
Best massage chair reviews (2017)
Real Relax Full Body Massage Chair Recliner
If you want to bring a full massage-spa experience to your home, this is the right pick. Luxuriously built, this model comes with the zero gravity option, four different massage programs, waist heater for improved circulation and metabolism, and anatomically designed foot rollers that give a deep and effective foot massage. Its strategically positioned eight massage points in the backrest make sure that you get a full body massage. 50 airbags will help your shoulders, back, arms and legs relax completely. Despite its numerous features, this massage chair is pretty affordable and comes with a three-year warranty that can be extended. On the downside, there isn’t a body scan option, as well as the intensity control. Overall, this is a great bargain.
Kahuna Massage Chair Recliner LM6800
This massage chair offers some advanced options such as three levels of zero gravity, a full body scan option for a perfectly tailored massage, and extra foot padding. Two layers of shoulder airbags provide you with a deep and relaxing massage of your upper back, while dual foot rollers make sure that your soles receive a thorough reflexology massage. The Yoga stretching program paired with a Kyro option guarantees a whole body stretch essential for improving flexibility and stress relief. You can also enjoy the benefits of heat therapy of your lower back region and calves. This chair doesn’t leave much to be desired, but the fact that sessions last only for 15 minutes can be seen as a mild shortcoming. Generally speaking, this is a great choice at a decent price.
Kahuna Massage Chair SM7300
The next best thing to human touch is how you can describe this massage chair. It comes with nine auto programs, including the special ones such as Office Person, Senior Mode, Dynamic Sport, or Fast Recovery, paired with the Zero Gravity option. A wide range of massage techniques provide an intense experience, so you can select kneading, tapping, knocking, tapping + knocking, or shiatsu massage. Moreover, each of these modes can be applied to your whole body, selected regions of your body, or even a fixed point. As it provides three more inches at the shoulder and hip area, this massage chair is suitable for all body types. Its 6-roller function gives you the feeling of being massaged by three different pairs of hands. The only shortcoming could be the fact that it provides a more intense massage, but some people see this as a plus.
Ideal Massage Shiatsu Chair
One of the best models within its price range boasts uninterrupted 30-minute massage sessions. 4 different auto programs – Shiatsu, Spinal Rolling, Kneading, and Vibrating, 48 airbags, built-in heat therapy in the back, and 3 Zero Gravity positions offer premium massage experience. You can fully adjust massage intensity and speed, which is especially convenient for sore muscles and back pain. Its ergonomically designed S-track rollers with vertical movement provide relief and relaxation. Quiet and equipped with remote-controlled functions, this chair allows you to relax completely and enjoy your massage. The only improvements could be made when it comes to foot massaging function and adding the stretching position.
Relaxonchair MK-II Plus Massage Chair
As its name suggests, this chair can help you to relax completely. Firm but at the same time gentle massage is exactly what tense and sore muscles, as well as stiff joints, need after a long day at work. 4 automatic massage programs, together with three manual targeted massage modes – kneading, tapping, and combo, offer a variety of health benefits. Zero Gravity position lifts some burden off your back and spine, and lower your heart rate. A full body scan option determines the length of your spine and adjusts a massaging method accordingly. The Buttlock L-Tracking Massage System is equipped with rollers that smoothly move along your back to under your seat and offer soothing full body massage. So-called Beauty Hip Massager is a function that activates a multiple-airbag system and enables compression massage of your hip and waistline. This is an excellent choice if you don’t mind the fact that there are only heaters for the lower back, and if the lack of background light for manual selection buttons doesn’t bother you.
Relaxonchair MK-IV Massage Chair
The best description of this massage chair would be that it’s like flying first class. One of its premium features is the next generation S-Shape Rail System, which was built to follow all the principles of ergonomics closely. Each of its five auto programs has been tailored to address a particular issue – Relax provides deep massage on various acupressure points, Comfort is focused on muscles and bones, Recovery improves blood circulation, while Neck&Shoulder and Back&Waist concentrate on these body areas. Another innovation that distinguishes this chair from the others is the Deep Air Massage, a system that will allow you to immerse your hands, arms, and legs in comfortable airbags and select the level of intensity. With Shoulder Height Adjustments, not a single critical massage point will be missed. Carbon fiber makes sure that the heating therapy is efficient and stable. 20 airbags take care that your feet get the unsurpassed massage experience. The only slightly weak spot is the neck massage function.
Osaki OS-4000 Massager Chair
Despite its seemingly inferior 2-position Zero Gravity option, this massage chair lacks very little in the comfort department. Six advanced auto programs, five levels of massage speed and intensity, as well as the stretch option, ensure a superb massaging experience. A full body scan and multiple airbags for various body parts make sure that your massage therapy is fully customized. The only issue with it lies in the fact that it has to cool down after it has been used for 60 minutes.
Innumerable auto programs and manual massage combinations of this high-end chair justify its premium pricing. There’s no need to list all its features: it has it all – Zero Gravity, stretch option, infrared lumbar and seat heating, you name it. The manufacturer threw in the additional Youth Session mode, which means that even kids can take advantage of this state-of-the-art chair. The only objection could be the expensiveness as mentioned above, but it’s worth every cent.
Best budget-friendly massage chair
These models have fewer options than the full-fledged massage chairs, but they can help you with your back issues and sore muscles. Just don’t expect a five-star treatment as they mostly don’t come with Zero Gravity, airbags, rollers, and infrared heaters.
Comfort Products 60-0582 Leisure Recliner Chair
Although pretty basic, this massage chair has ten intensity levels and four massage zones. Heaters are an excellent bonus option, and this whole package comes at a very affordable price. If you don’t mind occasional noise, and the lack of NASA-inspired Zero Gravity technology, don’t hesitate to buy it.
Flash Furniture Massaging recliner
The best way to describe this massage chair would be the best buy. With its five levels of vibration and heating, this model if one of the most comfortable within its price range. Although the intensity of massage could be better, you’ll still get good value for money.
Relaxzen 60-425111 Leisure Recliner Chair
The 8-motor massage, adjustable level of intensity, nine pre-programmed modes, and heaters for your lumbar area, this chair is a decent choice for people who don’t want to splurge on massage equipment. In the same vein, they most probably won’t be too upset about the noise and the padding that could be a tad softer.
Relaxzen 60-078011 Deluxe Leisure Recliner Chair
This is your average budget massage chair, with standard features and functionalities. However, luxurious finishing touches help it qualify as eye candy. The usual 8-motor massage, five levels of intensity, lumbar area heaters, and nine pre-programmed modes sound just fine, but on the downside, bigger people might find it difficult to find a comfortable position.