Modern massage chairs are quite expensive. That’s why you should choose it very carefully.
In particular, it’s necessary to study the basic parameters and possible options of the equipment, otherwise, there’s a high chance of spending a considerable amount of money and be disappointed.
Field of application of massage chairs
In terms of usage, massage chairs are divided into four types:
- for home;
- for recovery organizations (rest houses, sanatoriums, etc.);
- for vending.
Office models of massage chairs are compact and with less functionality. Their main purpose is to restore the body after a long and stressful working day. You shouldn’t expect a lot of functions, but they can do some kinds of massage. And office models are very convenient as standard office chairs.
Home models are considerably larger and heavier. Even though some of them have wheels, moving them is not easy. In addition to several types of massage, the home versions offer many functions, such as zero gravity, heating, heart rate control, etc. Working in this chair is not very convenient, as it’s designed for relaxation.
For recovery organizations, home massage chairs and physiotherapeutic models are used. Usually, these models have many features, including heartbeat control and electromagnetic massage.
Vending chairs are known for the presence of a bill acceptor to pay for using them. As a rule, the functionality of vending massage chairs is limited, which allows minimizing the cost of equipment and reducing the cost of repair in case of vandalism.
Types of massage
There are only five basic types of massage in these chairs. But some of them have different modes, which significantly increases the variability.
Roller massage. Under the chair upholstery, there are small rollers, which carry out body massage while moving. The rollers should be located in all massage areas, the back, lumbar region, shoulders, neck, thighs, buttocks, caviar, and feet.
There should be a possibility of disabling the rollers in each of the areas separately, in case the massage of certain parts of the body is contraindicated for one reason or another.
Rollers can be moved up and down, right and left, and in a circle.
The more options of roller movement (direction, speed, pressure force, etc.) are there, the higher the probability is that you will choose the perfect mode for yourself.
Vibrating massage. A special mechanism built into the armchair creates small vibrations that affect not only the muscles but the body as a whole. In particular, it improves blood circulation in the internal organs, which has a positive effect on their functioning and increases the ability to remove inflammations more effectively.
When choosing a massage chair, we recommend you to pay attention to the modes, there should be a few with different intensity. And don’t forget that vibration is contraindicated in some cases, including varicose veins and the presence of pacemakers.
Air massage. One of the most delicate types of massage, which is very pleasant and has a positive effect on blood circulation. Built-in seat cushions are inflated and deflated at regular intervals, exerting little pressure on the skin and muscles. The massage is perfect for restoring tired muscles after workouts and other physical activity.
When choosing a massage chair, pay attention to the location of the airbags, the more the better.
Thermal massage. In fact, it’s not really a massage, although it is what manufacturers call it. It’s more correct to call the infrared heater an additional option, rather than a separate type of massage. It’s used mainly during roller massage for joint pains to achieve the maximum therapeutic effect.
Electromagnetic massage. Electromagnetic massage chairs are called physiotherapy chairs and are mainly used in medical institutions. Purchasing such an armchair for home or office makes no sense, as the electromagnetic massage is a therapeutic procedure. It’s not only meaningless to use it constantly, but in some cases, it’s even harmful.
The perfect option for a massage chair is a combination of the roller, vibrating and air massage. Each type should have at least 2-3 modes of operation, ideally up to 10.
Massage chair options
A large number of massage options doesn’t guarantee that the chair will be comfortable and practical. It also should have certain features, which we will consider below.
- Adjustment of the chair. Good massage chairs have adjustable backrest angle, armrest and footrest height. This allows you to adjust the chair to suit your needs, regardless of height.
- Zero gravity. It’s a special positioning mode with even distribution of load on all parts of the body. In this position, you practically stop feeling your weight
- Heart rate control. Some types of massage can have a tonic effect and lead to a rapid heartbeat. This process should be monitored to ensure that the massage stops in time. It also makes sense to exclude massage modes that have an excessive effect on the heart. To do this, you can use special heart rate monitors or heart controls that are built directly into the chair, which is more convenient.
- Body scan. Advanced electronics scans the body and determines its main parameters, and then adjusts the chair according to personal anatomical features. This option is convenient because you don’t have to adjust the chair by yourself.
- Body stretching. The possibility of stretching the body, as a rule, is available on chairs with air massage, as the same pillows are used for this procedure. Some parts of the body are clamped between the cushions, which after being filled with air move slightly apart (up and down). As a result, the body is gently stretched out (mainly back), which improves posture and is a good prevention of intervertebral hernia.
- Memorization of settings. An extremely important option for armchairs with many types and modes of massage. This option allows the chair to memorize the types and modes of massage, as well as their sequence and use the saved settings for the next sessions.
- Rocking. The rhythmic but smooth rocking of the chair at the end of a massage session soothes the nervous system. Your body completely relaxes. The use of rocking is recommended before going to bed. Combined with your favorite music or even some guided relaxing music to also enhance your mental wellbeing.
Where to buy a massage chair
The massage chair is very useful, but it can also be harmful to the body if it doesn’t work properly. This is extremely important to understand. The massage chair should be made with the participation of professional doctors. Otherwise, it’s impossible to guarantee the therapeutic effect of the massage.
Therefore, for a certain amount of money, it’s better to buy a model with a minimum of modes but from a well-known brand than a highly functional one that you have no idea about.
We recommend buying massage chairs in specialized stores of medical equipment. You should also make sure that the chair has all the necessary certificates. Otherwise, there is a risk to buy used equipment that is damaged or has disadvantages.
You should also note that in specialized shops of medical equipment, people have at least some knowledge of medicine. They will be able to help you choose the best chair model.