Do Massage Chairs Work?

Thinking of buying a massage chair but looking for honest thoughts on how good they are? Or do you get constant pain in your back that you need good stress relief?

Even asking yourself: Do massage chairs really work? Yes, but only the good ones. There are two kinds of massage chairs: the low-end ones and the high-end ones.  It is always difficult to tell which is which because the main difference in both is the price and functions it comes with. There is also a big difference between the two in terms of user comfort.


However, we won’t concern ourselves with that. Instead, we will discuss the advantages of using massage chairs while also taking a look at the advantages and the negative effects of using massage chairs too much. 

Before diving into the benefits and reasons why massage chairs are worth the money, let us take a quick look at what massage chairs really are.

What is a Massage Chair?

A Massage chair mimics the qualities and gestures performed by a masseur on a client’s body. It replaces physical hand touch with the use of vibration as well as other techniques to give pain and stress relief. it focuses on three parts of the body, which are the head, neck, and back. Massage chairs are beneficial for people in need of quick relief from discomfort or pain as well as tension. Though we all know what they are for, the hefty price required to get quality massage chairs still begs the question of whether they are worth the price.

Benefits of Using Massage Chairs

The best way to know massage chairs work is by taking a look at the research carried out by the National University of Health Sciences. The result of their study showed that 23% of people who had a massage on a massage chair experienced positive changes in other areas of their body apart from the area they had issues with before the massage. Having said that below are more reasons why massage chairs are worth the price and money:

  • Improved mood and well being. This only comes into consideration if the massage chair is a quality one. A lot of cheap low-end massage chairs will only throw you into a bad mood due to the poor massage treatment you receive. However, quality massage chairs have a way of improving mood. You only need to have a go on one to truly understand.
  • Reduces chronic pain and muscle tension.
  • Improves posture.
  • It improves the circulatory function of the blood
  • It improves respiratory function thanks to the rolling settings which a lot of quality massage chairs come with.
  • It Improves digestion

Things to Consider When Buying a Massage Chair

The truth is, if the massage chair is not in the $2000 - $10,000 price bracket, there is no guarantee you will get some of the benefits mentioned above. Massage chairs in the price range above have some important functions you should always look for in a massage chair. These “must have” functions are very important and it does not matter if the massage chair is for rent in a mall or local salon or if you want to purchase the massage chair. So what are the functions and features you should look out for?

  • Kneading: Kneading or Shiatsu, as some might call it, is when a massage therapist rubs your body with two hands while gently applying pressure. A massage chair that does not have this setting is not worth buying. This is because kneading is a great way of relieving stress and back muscle ache.
  • Percussion: This setting mimics the "karate chopping" move massage therapist performs on a person's back. This technique helps blood flow.
  • Rolling: Do not buy a massage chair that does not feature rolling action. These rolling actions hep stretch the muscles and spine as well as massage the spinal bones.

How Often Should One Use a Massage Chair?

The best way to get the maximum experience from massage chairs is twice daily and a session of 15-20 minutes. Using the massage chair for a duration of more than 20 minutes can cause muscle soreness. You can also have sessions as short as 2 minutes.

The ideal duration to use massage chairs is by having a daily 15 minutes session.

Who Should not Use Massage Chairs?

It is not advisable for people above the age of 80. If you do not fall under that age bracket,  grab a massage chair for yourself from a store or visit a salon that has one.

NOTE: Some manufacturers advise that pregnant women should not use massage chairs as it might induce premature labor. However, there is no evidence that points to this fact and there is no incidence to back the validity of the claim.

The Danger of Using Massage Chairs

Proper use of massage chairs does not have any negative effects. The negative effects only arise when you overuse massage chairs. This is quite understandable given that the overuse of anything will only lead to something bad. Below are some of the negative effects of not using your massage chair for the recommended duration:

  •  Pain: This is due to the fact that the Shiatsu or Kneading technique massage chairs apply pressure on muscles to relieve pain and tension.  Using a massage chair for a long session can cause deep tissue pain which should abate within a few hours or days.
  • Skin Bruising: This is for those who have soft skin or bruise easily. The best way to avoid this is by setting the pressure option of the massage chair too low or soft settings.
  • Fatigue
  • Headache: Especially if you use a low-end massage chair.


The fact that massage chairs are available 24/7 anytime you need a massage only emphasizes how useful they are. It does not matter whether you are too lazy to drive or walk, all you have to do is jump on it to relieve yourself of body pain. Massage chairs improve blood circulation, reduce stress and generally leave you feeling superb after using it.
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