What is a massage chair?
If you’re not familiar with a massage chair, it’s a type of chair that you may have seen in an airport lounge or other location and it looks like an oversized armchair. A massage chair is designed to give the user a full body massage tailored to their height and body type. The user can choose to massage their entire body or they can focus the massage in a single problem area. Generally speaking, there are two main types of massage chairs, the first is a basic unit that you sit in and a therapist delivers the massage. The second type is a computer controller automatic massage chair that uses a variety of technologies to massage the user. The focus of this buying guide is the latter and we hope that this information will help you to choose the best massage chair under $2,000.
7 reasons why you should buy a massage chair
A massage chair is a considerable investment and it makes good sense to evaluate your needs before you commit to buy. Let’s take a look at 7 common reasons why people decide to buy a massage chair for their home.
Easing back pain
Anyone suffering from persistent back pain should consider a massage chair as a possible solution. Most modern massage chairs have heating pads or elements that warm up the lower back during the massage. The user is placed in a zero G position which reduces the pressure on the vertebrae and encourages circulation. This increases the effectiveness of the massage and it can relieve back pain and reduce stress.
Improving sleep and rest
Most of us are tense and stressed after a hard working day and this can affect how we sleep and rest. Getting good quality rest is extremely important for health and it helps our bodies to recover from fatigue and resist illnesses. A short relaxation session on a massage chair an hour before bed will help you to relax and get the full benefits from your sleep.
Relieve foot pain
If we are not sitting or in bed, we are on our feet and we can cover many miles in a typical day. Our feet can accumulate a great deal of stress and the health of our feet can affect our entire body. Most of the current crop of massage chairs feature some kind of foot massaging technology. These systems relax the feet, relieve any pain and help you to get back on your feet for the next day.
Improving blood circulation
Every massage chair on our list features a zero G system to place the body in an ideal position for a deep and relaxing massage. This is crucial because it relieves pressure, but it’s also important because it improves blood circulation. When our blood can circulate easily it can reach the muscles and the effectiveness of the massage is significantly improved. Another benefit is improved lymphatic drainage that helps the body to remove toxins and the take up of nutrients from our food intake.
Posture and relaxation
As we go through our daily routine we become tired and fatigued and our posture deteriorates. This is natural, but we need to restore ourselves and prepare ourselves for the next day. If we have a better posture and we are relaxed the tiring effects of a hard day are reduced somewhat. Think of a massage chair session as a mini-vacation for your body and you will be better equipped to handle a busy day.
There are many locations where you can get a good massage from a therapist. However, they are not typically open 24/7 and this can limit your access to some much needed pain relief or relaxation. Having your own massage chair at home means that you can have any type of massage experience whenever you need it.
A professional massage over and over again can become a real drain on your wallet in next to no time. The costs can really add up and when you compare them to the price of a massage chair on our list the choice becomes clear. If you have a massage chair at home, it’s more convenient and you will save money in the medium to long term.
Features to consider when choosing a massage chair under $2000
With so many massage chairs on the market, it may seem overwhelming to choose the best one. Here we’ll explore some of the key features you should consider to narrow down your options.
Massage automatic programs and functions
Many of the chairs have different automatic massage functions and programs. These include kneading, rolling, squeezing, tapping, Shiatsu and Swedish massage.
These programs can affect how the chair massages your body and increases your feeling of relaxation.
Zero gravity mode
Every massage chair on our list is a zero G chair that improves the effectiveness of the massaging experience. When the chair is switched on the legs are raised to a comfortable position above the height of the user’s heart and head. This gives the user a weightless feeling that’s extremely relaxing and it decreases the pressure on the vertebrae. This position also increases the circulation throughout the body to improve the health of the user. Zero gravity is a great feature but it will make the chair more expensive although it can be found on the BestMassage Massage Chair which is our best value pick.
Heating is a very useful feature for users suffering from lower back pain. In the past this feature has been an optional extra or a high end feature on more expensive massage chairs. At the sub $2,000 price point we can find premium chairs such as the Relaxonchair MK-Classic with lumbar heating pads. If the user needs heating in other areas of the body the massage chair is likely to be far more expensive than the models shown on our list.
Some massage chairs such as the Kahuna Massage Chair LM-6800 have more basic airbag massaging options. Others have advanced programs that use rolling pressure to relax muscles and improve blood circulation. The airbags are often located in areas that are not reached by the built-in S-track or L-track rolling systems.
Foot rest extension
A foot rest extension is essential. The feet must be supported and they should not be touching the ground. If the heels of your feet overshoot the foot rest you will introduce strain and that is counterintuitive. Any taller user will need a foot rest extension to give them the support that they need.
Materials and construction
A massage chair represents a significant investment and it makes good sense to get a durable chair that will last. These are complex pieces of equipment, they have a computer control system, electrical components and a large number of moving mechanical parts. In a complex machine like this, things can go wrong and this is especially true if low quality parts are used. Generally speaking, you get what you pay for and if you spend more you will get a better massage chair. However, all of the massage chairs on our list are durable options that should last for years.
Dimensions and weight
A massage chair is a substantial piece of equipment, it can be large and heavy and this makes it difficult to move. It’s important to get a massage chair that fits your decor and you need a location where it can be used safely. Some chairs such as the Ideal Massage 2017 Massage Chair have a space saving feature that allows the user to slide down and their legs are elevated. Always check the measurements of the massage chair and the location before you make a final purchase.
Many people worry about damaging their massage chair or voiding the warranty due to their weight. Most manufacturers clearly state the weight limit of their massage chairs so it’s easy to check before you buy.
Because a massage chair is a complex and expensive product, it makes good sense to study the warranty carefully. Some massage chairs such as the Bhealth Massage Chair have a good warranty but others offer far less. It’s not unusual to see separate warranty periods for the electronic components and the steel frame. Some manufacturers do not offer a warranty for labor and this can really drive up the price of a repair. If the seller offers an extended warranty this can be a good investment in the medium to long term. Always check the warranty carefully before you make a final decision to buy a massage chair and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Many massage chair features are simply luxury touches that are nice to have, such as MP3 support and USB connectivity. However, there are other features that you really need for a good range of massage options.