Traditional massage therapy involves the manipulation of the body's soft tissues. It is a physical practice that masseurs have been doing for a long time. However, massage chairs are a wonderful alternative for professional masseurs.
A huge proportion of the adult population in the US gets a massage every couple of months. Due to the increasing body of medical experts endorsing massage therapy for treating common health issues, more and more people are looking for massage chairs.
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In this article, you will learn about the safe use of a massage chair. But before that, let’s take a look at the features and advantages of a massage chair.
Features Of A Massage Chair
A massage chair is an effective tool for instant pain relief. It has seen a rising demand in the market for the last couple of decades. It has highly specialized seating designed to provide many benefits. According to a survey, more than 20% of the households in Japan have a massage chair.
One of the many interesting advantages of having a massage chair is that it saves you the time and trouble of going to a nearby massage Centre and booking an appointment.
How Long Can I Sit In A Massage Chair?
According to medical specialists, one can use a massage chair according to its physiological condition but if you are using it to lose your stress then you should use it for 15 -20 minutes twice a day and not more.
As far as the types are related massage chairs can be broadly classified as; Professional for professional use or business and Consumerist which may include the features of stretching, deep massage, and chromotherapy.
Many massage chairs are designed to reduce lower back stress and anxiety while some focus on one or two specific problems e.g; sciatic nerve pain etc.
Types Of Massage Chairs
The crucial parts of massage chairs are rollers, airbags, and vibrations. Based on these three components, there are three main types of massage chairs:
1. Roller Massage Chairs
Roller massage chairs are the most common type of massage chairs. Rollers are the part that is in direct contact with the body of the user. It provides relaxation with stimulation and muscle control. This is the main cause of the therapeutic effect that is required. The rollers come in different forms depending on their direction of functionality, including
2D Roller Motion -
These types of rollers provide a two-dimensional motion. This means that they will move along two planes, horizontal and vertical. These massage chairs, even though considered simple, are effective too and provide great effects.
3D Roller Motion -As the name suggests, these types of rollers provide a three-dimensional motion. This means that they will move along the plane in three directions. This type of massage chair is exceedingly helpful as they provide its users the choice to control the intensity too. Yes, you will be able to control the measurements of the movement of the rollers, so you can choose the extremity of the massage yourself. For internal tissue massages, this type of massage chair is highly recommended.
4D Roller Motion -These rollers move in four directions. This is the maximum amount of dimensions the rollers can move in. These types of massage chairs enable you to control the speed and style of their motion. You can fasten or slow down the massage chair to suit your needs.
Since rollers are the entire focus of roller massage chairs, these types of massage chairs prove to be the most beneficial in case of muscle advantage. Based on the types of muscle massage, the classification of roller massage chair includes:
Straight Track -These massage chairs provide a linear motion. The directions are from top to bottom. The con to these chairs is that they cannot reach the curved parts of the human body such as the lower back and neck. This renders them useful for recreational massage chairs at inexpensive rates.
S-Track -As the name denotes, these chairs provide motion to the curvatures because they are designed like an ‘S’. These tracks are the most usually used.
L-Track -These chairs provide elongated tracks that enable the rollers to provide a longer range. They have proved to be exceptionally useful for the body and this has helped bring popularity to them. Conditions like glutes, piriformis, and hamstrings can be treated by these chairs. They also provide relief to sciatic nerve pain.
2. Air Massage Chairs
Airbags provide massage and stimulation by inflating and deflating. This provides a compressive effect on the body, doing their designated task. Airbags are usually installed in those places of the massage chair that cannot reach the tiny parts of the body. Airbags have a relatively different way of moving. They provide twisting and swinging motions.
3.Vibration Massage Chairs
As the name denotes, vibration massage chairs provide stimulation and massage via concentrated vibrations. The vibrations are highly frequent and enhance circulation. There is, however, one downfall to these types of massage chairs: They are just for recreational use and cannot be used for massage therapy.
Why Do I Need A Massage Chair?
If you are suffering from health issues like depression, anxiety, hypertension, or stress, you should buy a massage chair right away. To live a healthy life, we should devise a way to relax our mind and reduce stress. A massage chair can be a good source for that.
Benefits Of Using A Heat Massage Chair Properly
A massage chair has many positive health impacts on our body. We can use it as a physical treatment tool also. Some of the benefits are listed here.
1. Increases Flexibility
A massage chair has rollers that work like human hands. When these rollers work on the body they relax the trigger points on your body and thus play a role in increasing the body flexibility.
Many muscles that become painful due to overactivity can be softened and made flexible using a massage chair.
2. Provides Pain Relief
Are massage chairs effective in reducing pain in muscles? Yes! They are. Massage chairs have amazing features like heaters and rollers which warm up the painful muscles and make them pain-free.
Headaches can also be treated using a massage chair. It triggers the parasympathetic nervous system which relaxes the body after an emergency. Thus, it helps in lower back pain, spine spasm, headaches, and skeletal muscles.
American pain society says that lower back pain is the major cause of non-accidental disabilities. It can be reduced by regular massage therapy.
3. Improves blood circulation and heart health
Your body has several points in the circulatory system through which blood circulation can be enhanced. As a therapeutic device, it employs techniques of gripping and shiatsu and helps in triggering such points in the circulatory system. So, your blood circulation is maintained even while sitting.
Furthermore, it lowers blood pressure and relieves the tension in the heart muscles. It has been proven that sitting on a massage chair for 20 minutes, just after waking up, increases your heart efficiency.
4. Makes immunity strong
Moreover, controlled massage chair therapy every day boosts up your immunity. Due to the horizontal conformation, it correctly aligns your spine and assists it in working effectively. It has a positive effect on your immune system.
According to research, massage chair therapy increases the number of B lymphocytes in your blood. The phagocytosis activity of lymphocytes is also increased. Thus, it has a role in making your immunity stronger.
5. Enables control over the massage intensity
The best part of massage chairs is that their controllers can help you alter the vibrations and rhythms according to need, so there is no worry of ‘too much’ or ‘too less’.
6. Air purification
Most of the massage chairs come with ionizers that provide a soothing environment. The amazing technology relaxes your muscles while keeping the surroundings clean.
Side Effects Due To Overuse Of A Massage Chair
As you may have heard, excess of everything is bad. Overuse of a massage chair can cause many health problems.
1. Can Induce Pain
Excessive massage therapy sessions can result in pain and stiffening of many body parts. Besides, if your skin is delicate, you may have a risk of a skin rash too. Inappropriate settings of a massage chair such as intense vibrations can also make your muscles stiff. However, these pains are mild and do not cause serious complications.
In case of very intense vibrations, muscle injury may also occur. Patients with a history of medical issues like thrombosis can have serious disturbances in blood circulation.
2. Can Disturb The Circulatory System
As indicated above, there are certain points in your circulatory system which serves to maintain the circulation of blood. People with certain circulatory issues can have their circulatory system disturbed by uncontrolled massage chair therapy because they have negative impacts on such points. The doctor’s advice should be needed for such patients to use massage chairs.
The Bottom Line
Scientific evidence has proven that massage chairs have many advantages for the human body. You can have a 15-20 minutes long massage therapy session every day. However, overuse can lead to mild health issues. In case you have a severe medical history, you should ask your doctor before using a massage chair.