Having a personal masseuse can be very expensive. However, if you opt for a massage chair, it doesn’t have to be. It’s a significant initial investment but overtime, it will definitely pay off. Moreover, you’ll have the advantage of having the relaxing massage at your disposal at any time of the day in the convenience of your home. But as we’ve mentioned purchasing a massage chair can be quite expensive, so how to choose the best massage chair. This massage chair buying guide will help you with understanding what features and qualities to look for in order to make the best purchasing decision.
Features To Look For
The most basic massage chairs will mostly offer only vibration and rolling massage. On the more advanced chairs you can usually find a bigger variety of techniques, such as kneading, shiatsu, percussion, compression, stretching, tapping, and other. If you have chronic back pain, for example, it’s best to choose a massage chair with features catered to your needs.
Shape of the Chair
Massage chairs come in either L or S shape, though the S shape is the more common one. The advantage of it is that the chair follows the curvature of your spine, so it’s a more accurate massage.
Zero Gravity or Recline
Look for a massage chair that either reclines or has the more advanced option of Zero Gravity. The benefit of zero gravity is that it positions your body in complete weightlessness and with this take the pressure off your spine. This helps to increase massage effectiveness and your overall relaxation.
You can also choose a chair with a recline. The maximum recline you’ll find is 175 degrees. In this position, your body will also be lying almost flat. On some chairs, you can also choose the level of recline, so you can adjust it to your needs.
With massage chairs, you can get massage for areas beyond your back. The most high-end models offer full body massage, including your feet, calves, arms and wrists.
- Massage intensity. It usually varies from one chair to another. However, most chairs will offer settings that allow you to customize the pressure to your preference. The intensity of the massage the chair provides is usually correlated to the number of motors. So if you’ll see that the massage chair has more motors, the more intense the massage will be.
- Heated massage option. Chairs sometimes use infrared heat to warm up the back and seat. The heat helps to increase circulation and with this, it eases aches and pains.
- Massage rollers. Check the length of the massage roller stroke the chair offers. The longer it is, the more back coverage will be massaged. Some of the best massage chairs offers the stroke length of 30 inches or more.
- Air bags. These work by delivering air pressure to small pockets that are located in the chair seat, legs or sides. The air bags work with a squeezing and releasing motion, stimulating blood flow.
- Customizable programs. Most chairs comes with pre-programmed massage options. They can combine different types of massage and target specific areas of the body. However, on higher end chairs, you can also customize these features. You can set a timer for the massage, choose the preferred massage technique and choose it work on just your back or full body.
- Body scan technology. People come in different body types and sizes. So if you want the massage to be customized to your body shape to the maximum, look for the body scan feature. It automatically detects the position of your body in the chair, the shape of your spine and your tense areas, then it adjusts accordingly and delivers the most customized massage.
Massage Chair Material
Usually, there are two options: leather or synthetic leather. First option is, of course, the recommended one. However, synthetic leather also has its benefits as it’s better at withstanding the heat, wear and tear that is usually associated with massage.
Keep in mind that massage chairs are usually quite cumbersome, so plan for it take up a lot of space in your home. Check the dimensions of the chair in both upright and reclining state and then make sure that you have enough space.
Another thing to keep in mind when choosing a massage chair is that they come designed for different body types and sizes. So if you’re taller or shorter than average, include it in your consideration when looking for a good chair. You can check in the product’s specifications. They often mention what is the tallest body type they can fit.
A good warranty is usually a good indicator of the quality of the massage chair. And these products are a huge investment, so you want to be sure that you will be covered if something breaks or goes wrong. Chairs have to bear with a lot of use, so they will require some maintenance or upkeep to ensure that they continue working smoothly. So check the length of the warranty that the manufacturer offers. Some manufacturers offer coverage for up to 3 years.
Massage chairs are available in different price ranges. A higher end massage chair can cost around $3,000 and above. At this price, you’ll get a product with the most advanced features available on the market. However, you don’t necessarily need to purchase such an expensive chair. There are also plenty cheaper massage chairs at around $1000-$2000 price range that also offer plenty of good features.
If you find yourself overwhelmed with all the massage chair options available on the market. This Massage Chair Land site offers comprehensive reviews of the best massage chair products.