Have you ever come home after a long day at work and wished all the stress and tension you felt would instantly melt away? Well, now you do not just have to wish for it. The solution to all your problems is a massage chair! You can now have your masseuse at home.
Studies show that frequent massages improve your overall health and are beneficial in relieving many pre-existing medical conditions. However, getting massages from a professional masseuse can become very expensive.
It's already hard to schedule doctor appointments and more challenging to find the time to make an appointment with a masseuse. You'll have to pay them by the hour at the very least, which doesn't include the cost of going out to the massage place.
A massage chair has no such requirement. You can enjoy your relaxing massage fully clothed while you listen to your favorite music. And the best part is if you have limited time, you can bring your work with you or even take your work meetings while sitting in a massage chair.
In today's fast-paced world, we need cost-effective and readily available services. Investing in a massage chair offers the convenience of getting a massage not only in the comfort of your own home or workspace but also anytime you want.
Benefits of Using a Massage Chair
1. Helps Reduce Backaches
Most people nowadays complain about suffering from backaches caused by working in front of a computer for hours. The excess strain it puts on your back muscles can even develop into severe pain that leaves you bedridden. Massage chairs can be used to reduce back ache. They come equipped with roller or airbag technology that can focus on specific areas of your body. The rollers mimic a masseuse's hand and thumb technique to relax your tense muscles.
2. Helps Combat Headaches
A good massage can also help ease your headache. Headaches can result from a stiff neck, lack of sleep, or stress. Massage chairs come with a collection of pre-programmed massages that can help reduce the stiffness in your neck and increase the blood flow in your body. Better blood circulation means that your brain will receive blood as it requires decreasing the severity and frequency of your headaches tremendously.
A massage also encourages the release of hormones such as endorphins and serotonin, which reduces mental stress. A massage from a massage chair allows you to eradicate the causes of your headache at the very root of the matter, which can successfully rid you of your headaches.
3. Induces Release of Endorphins
With every other person suffering from mental stress, you tend to wonder what you can do to reduce it. Our body naturally produces feel-good hormones such as endorphins and serotonin, which can effectively reduce the impact of everyday stress on your body and brain.
You can either opt for an excellent workout to increase your endorphin levels or get a massage as the easier way to stimulate your body to release feel-good hormones. The muscular compressions from the massage will signal your brain to release these hormones while suppressing the release of stress hormones such as cortisol. The combination of these two actions will rapidly decrease whatever mental stress you're going through.
4. Reduces Muscle Fatigue
There are many causes of tense or sore muscles. It could be that you slept at the wrong angle or picked up something you shouldn't have. Whatever the reason, frequent use of massage chairs can help you ease your tensed or strained muscles.
One of the major causes of muscle fatigue is a lack of blood flow. A massage not only encourages better blood circulation but also helps inhibit the release of inflammatory hormones such as cytokines.
Massage chairs have features such as a variety of massage techniques that can help relieve tensed or strained muscles. Another feature that most massage chairs have is heat therapy. The heat allows your muscles to relax with little to no pain. A bonus is that you don't have to worry about the massage being too short to relax you fully. You can make it as long or as short duration as you want it to be.
5. Helps Improve Sleep Quality
Most people have insomnia or get poor sleep quality. Lack of good sleep leaves you exhausted and unable to work at your full potential. Whether or not you get a massage can drastically affect your sleep quality.
A massage allows you to fully relax your body and mind so that when you sleep, your body can focus on refreshing your mind and body rather than unwinding from the stress of your previous day.
6. Improves Blood Circulation
A massage chair has varying massages and foot reflexology features that can stimulate your muscles and pressure points to improve blood circulation throughout your body. Features such as zero gravity recline or inversion therapy in your massage chair can help decompress your spine by relieving weight from it. This will allow more oxygenated blood to travel quicker to the extremities of your body.
Better blood circulation ensures you don't suffer from constant fatigue and soreness. Your body will be in better health overall, enabling it to combat whatever minor injuries or illnesses it might endure.
7. Improves Immunity Response of the Body
Studies have shown that regular massages boost an individual's overall immune system. This is achieved in many ways, such as increasing the body's white blood cell count, increasing blood flow, and removing toxins from the body. A massage chair allows you to receive regular massages that stimulate your body to relax. This period of relaxation is utilized by your body to detox itself internally.
8. Encourages Muscle Recovery
People who work jobs that require intense muscle work, like construction workers or athletes, constantly suffer from issues such as strained muscles that, if not taken care of, can develop into serious injuries.
Frequent massages can help these individuals recover from muscle pain caused by strenuous activities. Features such as heat modules, zero gravity recline, and different sets of massage techniques can be beneficial in inducing better blood circulation, muscle recovery, and stronger immunity.
Massage chairs allow you to customize your massages to target which body part might need extra attention. You can also choose how long your massages should be per your preference.
9. Helps Regulate the Lymphatic System
Our immune system largely depends on the lymphatic system to protect our body. Lymph nodes require movement to flush out toxins and excess minerals our body doesn't need. Massages can help provide the required compression to do so effectively. Massage chairs have the option where you can choose between different intensities of massages available to you. This feature can help you adjust the massage you receive as per your liking.
10. Manages Hypertension
People who suffer from chronic illnesses such as hypertension (Jeong-Hwan Lim, 2018) experience a visible decrease in their symptoms when they get a massage. Massage chairs are an obvious choice for these individuals as getting the massage will be easier and more cost-effective than getting one from a professional masseuse.
It will be harder for the masseuse to deliver the same massage each time you visit them. In contrast, a massage chair allows you to experience a massage at the same intensity and the recommended duration to help you treat your hypertension.
11. Decreases Stiff Neck Problems
A massage chair has rollers and airbags, especially in the neck region, to help target muscles and tendons more prone to becoming tense from excess use. The combination of both rollers and airbags gently massages the muscular neck and shoulder area.
This action promotes blood circulation and breaks down muscles that have formed knots. Using the heating feature and the different types of massages available can help decrease the severity and frequency of stiff neck problems.
12. Reduces Stress and Anxiety
Massages generally induce the production of feel-good hormones in your body. This can help reduce the stress and anxiety that can result from it. Your problem-solving abilities are stronger when you're not stressed out, thus, reducing the chances of experiencing anxiety. A massage chair provides you with the availability of massages at your convenience. You can also create the perfect environment to receive a massage by using built-in sound therapy or Bluetooth features.
13. Eradicates Insomnia and Depression
Our body needs good sleep to recover from the day's stress. Yet the mental stress accumulated throughout the day causes you to lose your sleep and depreciate your ability to be happy and lively.
Good sleep requires that your mind be free from any form of stress or worry. Massages have been proven to improve sleep quality by relaxing your body and encouraging the release of mood-elevating hormones such as dopamine and serotonin.
14. Relieves Sciatic Nerve Pain.
The sciatic nerve is one of the major nerves in your body; it runs down your lower back to your thigh. Any injury to your lower spine can result in severe sciatic nerve pain, making movement almost unbearable.
Massage chairs nowadays are designed with input from medical professionals making manufacturers incorporate features such as inversion therapy, twist, tilt, lumbar heat, and deep tissue massage.
Most massage chairs come with the option to customize their massage setting to adjust to your liking. You have total leverage over what kind of massage you receive and what intensity you would like it to be. These features specifically target sciatic nerve pain, and consistent use of such massage chairs' can help exponentially reduce sciatic nerve pain.
15. Alignment of The Spine
Features such as deep tissue massages, zero gravity recline, and heat therapy help relax your spine and the muscles and ligaments around it. The less pressure on your discs will help your spine to realign and give you a better posture.
An aligned spine will, in effect, enhance your blood circulation and help improve your breathing, allowing oxygenated blood to easily and quickly flow throughout your body.
16. Muscle and Joint Relaxation
Most of the soreness and fatigue you experience is due to inflamed muscles and tendons around the joints. A massage allows you to gently relax all your muscles and joints to help you retain your range of mobility. Ignoring joint and muscle pain can lead to more severe outcomes.
Cytokines are hormones that cause inflammation in our bodies. Massages allow you to decrease the production of these hormones while gently relaxing your muscle fibers. This can be achieved through the various massage techniques available on a massage chair, such as shiatsu, knocking, kneading, tapping, etc.
17. Decreases Edema
Edema is a medical condition where swelling is observed near your ankle or feet. This is due to fluid retained in the space in your body's cells. Compression massages can help reduce swelling greatly.
Many massage chairs have inflatable airbags built in them that can provide gentle compression massages by using a combination of hold and squeeze techniques. This can induce organs such as the kidneys, liver, and lymphatic system to remove excess fluid in your body.
18. Increases Flexibility
Regular use of massage chairs can help increase your body's flexibility. Massages gently relax and stretch the muscle fibers that, reduce stiffness and fatigue and allow you to retain your mobility and improve it. Your joints also become more adapted to moving and less prone to injury.
Many massage chairs have stretching features that stretch your body using airbags and rollers to stretch your muscles and tendons gently. This allows your body to relax by strengthening your muscles and tendons and increasing joint movement. This will result in improved overall flexibility and coordination of your body.
19. Improves Your Skin
Most people receive facials, manicures, and pedicures monthly, if not weekly, to help the skin on their face, hands, and feet rejuvenate from increased blood flow. Massages have a similar effect on the skin of the rest of your body that is often overlooked.
Features such as kneading and heating can help stimulate sweating, allowing your body to eliminate impurities from your skin. The different massage techniques can also help tighten the pores on your skin by stimulating the production of collagen in your skin.
20. It helps retains a range of motion.
Today our sustainability depends more on our mental skills than our motor skills. This is a big advantage for us, yet we face the threat of early-onset diseases and old age because of how little we use our bodies physically. Most of us have little or no physical activity.
A massage can help us reduce this threat exponentially as it helps our muscles and joints retain their flexibility. It also helps maintain overall mind and body coordination. A massage chair provides a wide range of massage options that can also target specific muscles as required by its user.
21. Helps with Posture
Now that everything is online, especially work and school, many people complain about back aches and bad posture. These can be caused by overuse of your back muscles, causing them to strain and stiff joints.
If you use a massage chair regularly, it can help you improve your posture and back aches. It can do so by massaging your back muscles and decompressing your spine. You can even use heat therapy to loosen the tight muscles, further causing your bad posture.
22. Improves Mental Clarity
Massage chairs can offer different types of massages with varying intensities that can help improve your overall mental clarity and concentration. Massages improve your problem-solving skills and help you tap into your inner creativity to work more efficiently. This can be attributed to the mental and physical relaxation you experience after a massage.
23. Heat Therapy
Most massage chairs have heat therapy features that work together with different massage techniques to help relax your muscles. The heat modules inbuilt into your massage chair can help soothe and loosen your muscles for a more deep and enhanced massage effect.
24. Stimulate Pressure Points
Our feet have certain reflex points that, when put the correct pressure on, help regulate our bodily functions by stimulating our nervous system, increasing blood circulation, and cleansing toxins from our system. Most massage chairs have rollers and airbags that exert the perfect pressure on these reflex points throughout your body.
25. Manage Labor pain
Massage chairs have features that are specifically designed to relax your lower back muscles. Labor pain occurs specifically in the lower back region; thus, you can use massage chairs to help manage labor pain. Lower back massages can even shorten the time duration of labor for some women. The relief from the massage can help the pregnant woman be more present-minded during the birth.
26. Reduces Side Effects of Cancer
Fighting cancer is mentally and physically exhausting. A back massage (Hand, 1969b) can help reduce some side effects of cancer, such as fatigue and sleep deprivation. Massages can help relax sore muscles, which can reduce their pain considerably. They will also experience an elevation in mood due to the endorphins released into the bloodstream.
27. Management of PMS
Pre-menstrual symptoms include mood swings, tender breasts, and lower abdominal region cramps. All of these symptoms can be hard to manage with your everyday routine. A massage can help manage PMS. The muscles in your lower back will feel more relaxed, while feel-good hormones will help reduce mood swings.
28. It helps in overall coordination
Once your body is relaxed from a massage, you'll notice that your body has better overall coordination due to a relaxed mind and muscles. The increased blood flow will allow your nerves to function more efficiently while your muscles work efficiently to move your limbs and joints.
29. The convenience of Accessibility
Massage chairs are easily accessible. You don't need to make an appointment or find time out of your busy day to travel a distance to avail of its massage services. Investing in a massage chair for your home or office ensures that your ability to receive a massage is minutes away.
30. The convenience of Adaptability
Most massage chairs come with the option to customize their massage setting to adjust to your liking. You have total leverage over what kind of massage you receive and what intensity you would like it to be. You can customize the settings and enjoy a peaceful massage whenever possible. A bonus is that you don't have to worry about the massage being too short to relax you fully. You can make it as long or as short duration as you want it to be.
31. Avoid the hassle of a masseuse
It's already hard to schedule doctor appointments, but it's especially hard to find the time to make an appointment with a masseuse. You'll have to pay them by the hour at the very least, which doesn't include the cost of going out to the massage place. A massage chair allows you to avoid all these inconveniences by getting your massage in the comfort of your own home. You won't have to bear the pain of strained muscles or sprained ligaments till you can finally get hold of a masseuse; the massage you'd need will be available right at home.
32. The convenience of Multitasking
Traditional massages require you to de-robe and lie down on a table while another person works on you. A massage chair has no such requirement. You can enjoy your relaxing massage fully clothed while you listen to your favorite music. Or if you're stretched for time, you can bring your work with you; you can even take your work meetings while sitting in a massage chair.
Who Can Use a Massage Chair?
A massage chair is a versatile technology that almost anyone can use. However, massage chairs can be highly beneficial for the following people.
Athletes are a group of people who spend most of their time doing exercises that can cause severe muscle fatigue and general soreness in their bodies. A massage chair can help reduce the effect of such strenuous activities by gently massaging their muscles to help them relax. It can help them increase their blood flow to the sore regions of their body to promote the regeneration of cells and keep injuries at bay.
- Office workers
Even though you might not think of people who work a desk job as candidates for massage chairs yet they are people who can also benefit from an excellent fifteen-minute massage. As their work primarily utilizes mental skills, they are more prone to suffer from mental stress. If not dealt with on time, mental stress can result in physical and mental illnesses such as insomnia, digestive issues, hypertension, etc. A massage can allow them a time and cost-effective solution to their stress, allowing them to increase their overall efficiency at work.
- People who work out
Most people who work out regularly to take care of their physical health experience extreme fatigue and soreness after a workout. However, with limited hours of the day available, they rarely get adequate rest before and after a workout session. Here's where a massage chair can be helpful for them. A massage chair can help warm up before a workout and cool down after a workout.
- People with chronic back pain
Doctors and chiropractors recommend that people who suffer from chronic back pain should get frequent massages to manage their backache. However, if they seek a masseuse to provide them with therapeutic massages, it can soon prove too costly. On the other hand, a massage chair is designed with features specially built to target back pain. These people can benefit from using massage chairs with additional features like zero gravity and heat therapy to ease their back pain.
Characteristics of a Good Massage Chair
It is best to do thorough research when looking to invest in comfort. The market is full of massage chairs that provide different features and programs. Finding the one that suits your needs is essential. The following are some of the characteristics that can help you determine a good massage chair.
Price is a major concern for massage chair buyers. Cost is determined by many factors, such as the quality of upholstery, the menu of pre-programmed massages, rollers, and airbags, etc.
Usually, a massage chair with the most standard functions can cost anywhere from $1,500 to $12,000. An average massage chair can cost you $3,000 on the lower scale and $7,000 on the upper scale.
- Recline Function
While most massage chairs have a recline option, nowadays, high-quality massage chairs have various recline options available for their users. These include zero gravity reclining as well as inversion therapy. The zero gravity recline places your body in a gravity-neutral position, mimicking the weightlessness of space that takes the pressure off your spine. The recline feature allows the massage chair to provide a deeper massage experience that enhances relaxation.
- Specific Target features
Not all massage chairs are the same. Your massage chair should have the features that you desire. For example, if you're looking for a massage chair to help ease your sciatic nerve pain, you need to buy a massage chair with those exact features. Similarly, if you're looking for a massage chair that can also provide pressure point massages, you would need a massage chair with one built.
- Ease of Use
Massage chairs need to be easy to use. Don’t buy a massage chair with complicated instructions or one that does not have multiple language modes for you to operate its menu. Massage chairs usually come with easy-to-operate intuitive controls, which may be controlled by a touch screen, one-touch remotes, or even voice activation.
How Often Should You Use a Massage Chair?
Getting frequent massages is recommended.
Massages help to stretch and put pressure on your muscles and joints. You can view it as working out. But first, allow your body to get used to the movement you're putting it through. Remember to start with the lowest intensity level and slowly build it up if necessary.
Another important thing to remember here is that you should not view massages as merely enjoyable modes of entertainment. Think of it as a medical treatment that you need in small dosages. Do not sit in a massage chair for hours on end. Most massage chairs come with massage timers. It is a feature included by the manufacturers after deliberate research. Use a massage chair in short intervals that are 15-20 minutes long. Excess use of massage chairs can even worsen your pre-existing injuries.
The Bottom Line
A massage chair is convenient and easily accessible, especially for those people who require regular massages to manage pain or jobs that strain their bodies. A massage chair is an excellent investment, even for those whose job is more mentally challenging than physically. A massage chair is much more than just a piece of luxury furniture. By incorporating it into your daily life, you can easily manage health issues such as high blood pressure, digestive issues, sleeping disorders, lower back pain, and depression.
- De Souza TPB, Kurebayashi LFS, de Souza-Talarico JN, Turrini RNT. The effectiveness of Chair Massage on Stress and Pain in Oncology. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. 2021 Sep 2;14(3):27-38. doi: 10.3822/ijtmb.v14i3.619. PMID: 34484493; PMCID: PMC8362824.
- Hand, M. E. (1969, December 31). Massage Chair Sessions: Favorable Effects on Ambulatory Cancer Center Nurses' Perceived Level of Stress, Blood Pressure, and Heart Rate | ONS. Retrieved October 12, 2022, from https://www.ons.org/cjon/23/4/massage-chair-sessions-favorable-effects-ambulatory-cancer-center-nurses-perceived-level
- NCBI - WWW Error Blocked Diagnostic. (n.d.). Retrieved October 13, 2022, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8298867/