Massage Chairs FAQ - Elite Massage Chairs

MASSAGE CHAIR FAQs

Our Massage Chairs FAQ section is where you can find answers to some of the most common questions people ask when buying a massage chair.   Want to learn more, or have a question not listed here?  Contact us and one of our massage chair experts will be in touch with you right away. 

We’re here to help in you choose the best massage chair for you! 
  • Elite Massage Chairs has been in business since 2001 – dedicated solely to premium massage chairs.  We work closely with the leading massage chair manufacturers across the globe, from Germany, Japan and China to stay constantly aware of the latest designs, features and innovations being released.  We appreciate the subtle differences of each massage chair model, but never accept any chair that we feel is poorly designed, feels mechanical and not lifelike, and uses internal parts or designs that aren’t reliable to stand up to years of work and operation.  

    Our approach has always been to sell massage chairs direct to the consumers to provide expert advice and guidance, and lower pricing and optimal value.  We sit in massage chairs every day, and we instantly gravitate to those chair we’d buy if we were in our customers’ shoes.

    Our Colorado roots are also reflected in our business approach.  We are passionate about active and healthy pursuits – both outdoors and in – and appreciate the lifestyle and wellness benefits gained through daily massage, and look forward to continuing to pushing innovation and supporting our customers for years to come.  

  • You may not have heard of Elite Massage Chairs because we are in extremely few retail locations. There’s a reason for this:

    Elite is about selecting great massage chairs and providing our customers with direct access to our knowledge and expertise to make the right decision in their purchase.  

    Elite sells massage chairs direct via the Internet.  This keeps our costs streamlined so we can provide premium massage chairs with cutting edge design and functions at prices lower than our competition.

    Our company leadership comes from the Internet and technology sector, and so the belief in streamlined, scalable and consumer-direct models in baked into our entire philosophy.

  • Most people who try an Elite massage chair that we have painstakingly selected vs. competitor chairs immediately notice the depth, strength and quality of our massage mechanisms and programming.  

    We choose chairs for a deeper, therapeutic, and more life-like massage than other premium chairs.  

    We also purposely select massage chairs with cutting edge innovations that work, and that are found in few if any other chairs on the market today.  These innovations include things like L-track plus 3D, undulating seat movement, reversible ottomans, and integrated Braintronics technology for brainwave frequency entrainment, just to name a few.  

    This adds exciting and effective new features to drive new benefits of massage chairs, and ensure if you buy from Elite, you are getting on the latest and best massage chairs available.  This is the reason we believe Elite is the only source you need in shopping for massage chairs.

     

  • In just about every premium massage chair, the rollers or “massage hands” in the backrest roll, knead, and tap in an up and down motion on a fixed tract. In a true 3D chair the massage hands also go toward and away from your back (up, down, plus in and out).

    There are only about a half dozen true 3D chairs in the US today and the Brio, EP-MA73 and DreamWave are among them. 

    Since the release of 3D chairs, many people think that 2D is outdated, however this is not true in very well-designed chairs. As the Alphasonic proves, 2D chairs can deliver an exceptionally deep, smooth, and top-quality massage.  The Alphasonic does this through an innovative adjustable shoulder design that presses down vertically to enhance the depth of massage in the back, delivering the sensations of 3D depth in a simpler mechanism.

  • You may have heard that Zero-G is the position that astronauts sit in before take-off, or that the position of the feet above the heart helps with circulation and comfort for the spine. In essence, Zero-G is the natural position the body takes when in a micro gravity environment.

    Your body takes this Zero-G position naturally when you are submersed in water and totally relaxed. It’s the most natural body position to humans in a relaxed state. What was the very first Zero-G chair? Probably your great-great grandmother’s rocking chair!  The concept isn’t new, it’s just been renamed for the 21st century, and is used a lot when people talk about massage chairs.

    Some massage chairs do this fairly well and others, not so much.  The upside of Zero-G is that it is an extremely comfortable and relaxing way to sit. The downside is that some massage chair manufacturers have not evolved their designs adequately enough to provide an equal pressure massage while the body is in this “Zero-G” position, so getting a massage in a poorly designed Zero-G can be uncomfortable, completely defeating the purpose.

    The Alphasonic and Brio models incorporate Zero-G at the press of a button (both are built on an L-track design), and deliver smooth, equal-pressure massage throughout the massage rolling stroke.

     

  • Virtually all massage chairs are covered with durable, resilient and long lasting synthetic leather. The material is ideal for massage chairs given the significant amount of massage motion delivered through the material, and what will be many wonderful years of use.

    Leather is occasionally used in massage chairs, as is the case with the DreamWave.  Note that this option is only available in black.

    The synthetic coverings mimic the look and feel of natural leather, and are virtually maintenance free. The materials have been conditioned to withstand the rigors of a frequent massage movements, and do not need to be treated or moisturized.  Plus the materials can be cleaned with almost any product, other than alcohol-based products which might affect the color.

  • First, the old saying goes here:  “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.”  This will become evident as you review various massage chairs – they can come in many shapes and colors.  Some may look more like your typical recliner, some look like office chairs, and some look like they came off of a star ship!

    Each manufacturer has a different idea of how a massage chair should look, and these visual aspects typically cater to the markets where their chairs are marketed and sold.  Since the largest markets for massage chairs are in Asia, many designs incorporate characteristics distinct to those cultural preferences. It is up to you to decide what design you find most attractive, and how important that is to the purchase decision.

    One thing to consider:  If you want a premium massage chair that truly emulates the touch of human hands and provides a full-body experience, the inner workings can make it difficult to give it the appearance of your average La-Z-Boy recliner. Typically a premium chair may not seamlessly integrate within existing home décor.  

    Still, we believe in beauty on the outside, while delivering what matters most on the inside – for an extraordinary massage.  That is why we chose to feature the EP-MA73, which is the closest on the market to a massage chair that looks much like a traditional recliner.  It truly is a beautiful chair.

    A massage chair is comprised of a massage block (the core mechanisms of the massage “hands” and rollers) that moves along an internal track.  Premium chairs can incorporate features such as neck, shoulder and torso bags, calf and foot air bags, and rollers for the calves and feet.

    Most massage chairs are designed to fully recline, with foot rests that raise for stretching motions, and to increase massage intensity by using gravity to achieve deeper muscular massage.  All of these mechanisms, along with steel frame, drive belts, wiring, multiple motors, solenoids, air hoses, magnets, heating elements, motherboards, and in some models speakers.

    As a result, premium therapeutic massage chairs are generally much larger than the typical recliners in today’s homes, and heavier too!

    At Elite Massage Chairs, we appreciate designs specifically for the American consumer market, and we believe in striving to achieve the right balance between form and function.  We like subtle designs without a lot of “flash” or cluttered details, and listen closely to the feedback from our customers.

    Our studies have shown that many customers put their chairs in their bedrooms, living rooms, dens and workout areas. So we create chairs that are designed well and people find attractive, however most importantly deliver what counts – superb massage quality, nothing less.

  • The answer is yes – some do.  But don’t settle for that. What you want is a chair that provides a fluid, human like movements – no matter how many features a given chair has.  We recommend avoiding massage chairs that not only feel mechanical, but sound mechanical too.  

    This can often be the case with cheaper models, but also with many “premium” positioned chairs – loud motors and constant hissing of airbags compressing and decompressing.

    What we want – and believe what you’ll want – is a chair that gives the most relaxing and lifelike movements possible, so we seek massage chairs with mechanisms and programming are silky smooth, quiet, and elegant.  Each is slightly different, but across our line you’ll find the best engineering in the industry.  The goal is to deliver the sensations of a massage with a human touch, and the most fluid movements possible. 

  • Ideally, both.  Most massage chairs use one of two types of massage mechanisms, mechanical or air bags for compression.  Although both types of massage provide benefits, mechanical massage is the preferred choice for true therapeutic massage therapy.  

    Rather than simply squeezing as an air massage would perform, mechanical rollers manipulate your muscles for more effective and deeper massage treatment.  

  • We believe the answer is simply “very important.”  

    It is important to choose a massage chair that is capable of delivering a strong massage, for optimal therapeutic benefits.  A strong massage can always be softened by reducing intensity, as well as by adding extra pads to the back rest.  As your back becomes more conditioned to regular massage, you will want a firmer massage.  You can always make a strong chair softer with a press of a button, but you can’t make a soft chair stronger.  

    There are a variety of effective ways to deliver a strong massage, from 3D massage hands that reach into the muscles, or in the case of the Alphasonic, using advanced shoulder airbag design to compress the body into the rollers to effect deeper penetrating massage.  

  • At a high level, the Back Stretch program uses a custom massage routine carefully coordinated with the airbags located on the shoulder, legs and feet – to achieve three goals in a prescribed sequence.

    1. Muscle Massage. A combination of massage techniques designed loosen the muscles running along the spine that are particularly subject to soreness. These targeted muscles can become tight and sore over time as your body tries to compensate for the general compaction of the spine.
    2. Shoulder Opening. Thai-style massage to pull the shoulders back while applying upward 3D movement of the massage hands to open the shoulders to reverse years of hunched posture.
    3. Back Stretch. Utilization of Acupressure airbags and chair positioning movements designed to create space in the vertebrae of the lower back.

    For a more detailed description of the actual experience in the massage chair during the Back Stretch program, following is a “play-by-play” of the 20-minute sequence.

    Phase 1:

    During the first 10-20 seconds of activation, the massage chair initiates a scan of the back to map the curvature of your specific shape, as well as the location of your shoulders.

     

    Phase 2:

    Most Back Stretch programs start with a combination of rolling and tapping. The massage hands roll down the muscles on either side of the spine, while applying a percussion movement – all designed to loosen tight or sore muscles. The combination massage movement can also alleviate knots that can occur in the muscles of the back and upper shoulders. Knots occur when muscle fibers start to stick to each other and become adhered. This lumpy feeling is a “knot” and are incredibly common.

    Phase 3:

    When the massage hands move to the position between the shoulder blades, the shoulder airbags inflate to their fullest setting, while simultaneously the massage hands push up and into the upper shoulders from behind. The effect is the shoulder are pushed back and the shoulders are “opened.” This massage sequence is especially effective for those who hunch over their work all day, and helps release the spine and pectoral muscles.  If you have ever received a Thai-style backstretch, this is applied by the masseuse pulling the arms back while applying pressure to the middle back.

    Professional thai masseuse is stretching female body. She is raising leg to her back. Young woman is sitting on floor. Her eyes are closed with pleasure

    Phase 4:

    The massage hands now progress downwards in a deep rolling massage. With the shoulder airbags remaining fully inflated to apply Acupressure, and importantly to secure the upper body, the massage airbags of the lower legs and feet begin the fully inflate. The effect is essentially the full body is held in place, and positioned for the Back Stretch sequence in the next phase.

    Phase 5:

    With the body now secured by the airbags, the massage chair backrest begins to recline while simultaneously the footrest moves down. At the full expression of this dual movement, the spine is gently elongated, and space is created between the vertebrae of the lower spine. Overall this combination of movements takes the pressure off the spinal discs, by creating negative pressure. As a result, bulging or herniated discs may retract, taking pressure off the nerves and other structures in the spine. This in turn helps promote the movement of water, oxygen, and nutrient-rich fluids of the discs so they can heal.

    Phase 6:

    After a few moments of this static position, the massage chair airbags deflate, and the chair moves back to a more upright position as the footrest moves back to its highest point. From there, Phases 3 through 6 repeat throughout the duration of the Back Stretch program.

    Summary:

    Overall, the sensations are remarkable – extremely relaxing, and the feeling of this gentle elongation of the spine leave one feeling more nimble and loose. It is no wonder the Back Stretch program is a favorite of many massage chair owners.

  • Most massage chairs on the market today are made in China, with a few made in Japan.  For example the Alphasonic and Brio are made in China, and the EP-MA73 and DreamWave are made in Japan.

    China has become increasingly popular due to the significantly lower costs associated with this labor market, as well as access to the necessary raw materials and components that go into massage chair construction.  These lower costs are evident in the prices of various massage chair models.  Chinese manufacturing has made huge strides in overall quality control, and match virtually all of the capabilities found in other Asian countries. 

    Still, there is no doubt some cache and perceived quality attributes among buyers about those massage chairs made in Japan; however you will be hard-pressed to really notice any differences.  Even many if not most of the parts of those chairs shipping from Japan incorporate parts sourced in China – again for the cost of manufacturing benefits.

    In the case of any chairs sold by Elite, we ensure every factory is certified to international standards including ISO9001, CE, UL, CUL, ROHS, ETL, and FDA.  This is key to the inherent manufacturing quality of each massage chair.

  • Typically most full-body massage chairs weight in excess of 200 lbs, with the heaviest models topping the scales at 300+.  They are chairs on the outside, and complex machines on the inside, so heavier than typical furniture their size.

    Despite their relative heft, virually all massage chairs have integrated wheels or castors that make them easy to move.  In the case of moving a chair into your home, Elite offers white-glove delivery service, to deliver your massage chair to any room in your home, right where you want it.

    For quick reference:

    Brio Massage Chair:  151 lbs.

    EP-MA73 Massage Chair:  191 lbs.

    Alphasonic Massage Chair:  206 lbs.

    DreamWave Massage Chair:  265 lbs.

    You can find many more details about each chair by visiting our Massage Chair Comparison Chart.

  • Most massage chair motors have what is called a MTF (Mean Time Failure Rate) of around 500 – 3000 hours, depending on the overall build quality of the chair. Motors in the chairs across the Elite Massage Chairs offering have an MTF upwards of 10,000 hours. This means that with normal use, the massage chairs can last 15-plus years.

    Also very importantly, we vet each manufacturer on their reputation for customer service post-purchase, to ensure you can have confidence in any chair sold by Elite.

    We have resources to learn more about what can typically break in a massage chair, and you can learn more by clicking here.  

  • It varies by model – from 3 in some cases, to over 10 in others.  Newer models tend to have less motors, and designers have developed increasing efficiencies over time to utilize motors for multiple functions.

    Motors are used for reclining the backrest, raising the footrest, and the various massage functions utilize light motors – such as to move the massage hands, move the massage block up and down, and for things like kneading motions and 3D mechanisms. 

    Also there are variously air compressors for the inflation of the Acupressure airbags located throughout the chair, including the shoulders, arms, back, legs, hips and feet.

  • The most common problem is caused by not plugging your massage chair into a surge protector or power strip. The main board of the chair is just like the motherboard and powerboard on your computer.

    If you have a lightning strike, power surge or power outage it can affect your chair. Fortunately power boards – and motherboards if they are affected from any electrical issues – are fairly easy to replace. Periodically since massage chairs are machines, some things can break – but we know our chairs inside and out and can always repair them pretty easily – either under warranty, or for a reasonable repair fee after that.

  • If all functions are operating, most massage chairs utilize about 200w of electricity.

    For comparison, a waffle iron uses between 800-1000 watts of electricity, a refrigerator uses between 500-700 watts, and desktop computer with a monitor uses between 200-400 watts.  Given their size, massage chairs use surprisingly little power when compared to these common household appliances.

  • Elite provides three tiers of delivery services, each is priced individually. From curbside delivery to “white glove”, we can provide the delivery method that works best for you.  Please take care to ensure before ordering that you have at least 30” of width clearance and 60” of depth clearance where you would like to have the chair placed.

    Having said that, some chairs such as the Alphasonic and Brio models utilize something called “Zero-Space” design, allowing you to position the chair right up against the wall.  The chair pivots forward as the backrest reclines, so requires significantly less space than traditional recline mechanisms.

    Below is more information on shipping options for your Massage Chair.

    Standard

    For standard deliveries, the chair will be delivered to the threshold of your door, as long as the entry is on the ground level.  The driver must have clear access to the threshold without climbing any stairs or entering into any type of building.  If there are obstacles beyond these restrictions at your location, please contact us prior to delivery to discuss necessary specifics.

    2-person In-Home Delivery

    Available for an additional fee, this enables the delivery into (or inside) your home.  Unpacking and simple assembly will be the customer’s responsibility.  Please note the threshold must be 35″ or wider in order to have enough room for the box.

    White Glove Delivery

    This option can take 7-14 days – but the right option for customers who wish to have the chair delivered into the preferred placement of their home, have the chair set up for them, and have the boxes taken away (however we strongly encourage you to keep all packing materials for warranty purposes).  

    For White Glove Delivery you will be contacted in advance to schedule a delivery time that is convenient for you.   There are circumstances that may lead to additional charges – such as more than two flights of stairs, spiral staircases, etc. – so please contact your Elite representative to learn more about these circumstances and any fees.

    To see all the options and compare pricing, visit our shopping cart on the Elite website to experiment.

  • Depending on stock and availability of colors, our typical delivery is 7-10 business days.  There are rare cases – the holiday shopping season for example – when these delivery windows might extend beyond this period due to high shipping volume.

    Your best bet would be to give us a call and provide a time frame when you’d like to receive your chair, and we can help find the best option and give you accurate guidance.

  • Most extended warranties are 3 years parts, and 3 years labor.  In the case of the Alphasonic, this is standard at 5 years parts and 5 years labor.

    For those massage chair models with 3 years warranties, there are extended warranties available for purchase at the time of the massage chair purchase to extend the coverage to  5 years.  

    Extended warranties can run anywhere from $250 to $450, depending on the model and manufacturer.

  • We offer financing options through secure, industry-leading financial institutions. There are also ways you can use your FSA HSA or flex spending account through your medical insurance. To learn more about using your health insurance to cover the cost of your massage chair, click on this link.  Or if you would like to learn more about our massage chair financing programs, click here.

     

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  • 3D Depth Technology:  An advanced feature that allows the rollers to push forward into your back as they roll, knead and tap your back. There are only a few models on the market today that utilize true 3D movement.

    Rolling Stroke:   You could actually add two inherent terms to this one – “Actual” Rolling stroke and “Published” Rolling stroke.  Either way rolling stroke is the measurement in inches from the top of the rollers at the highest pint of the massage to the bottom of the rollers from the lowest point of massage.  It’s worth asking if the Rolling Stroke for each massage chair has been actually measured and verified, or the number is what the factory specifies in the manual.

    Auto Programs:  These are automatic programs built in to the massage chair right out of the box.  Auto Programs allow you to press a single button that sends the massage chair into a pre-programmed routine. These routines typically provide for a particular massage type, for example relaxation, recovery, or stretching.

    Body Scanning:  Body scanning is an advanced feature that allows the massage chair to “scan” or take measurements of the users back to customize the massage roller movements for various body sizes.  The most important scan input is the location of the shoulders – and your massage chair should ideally allow you to override the scan results with a slight manual adjustment if you don’t feel the massage hands (or rollers) are hitting your shoulders right where it feels best.

    Combination Massage:  You might see these as various massage techniques bundled together, such as “Kneading, Tapping, & Rolling” or “Kneading & Tapping”.  These are simply automated programs that deliver these massage techniques simultaneously versus just one or two at a time.

    Heat or Integrated Heat:  Higher end massage chairs often add heating elements to the back rests of their chairs to add to the comfort of the massage chair as well as to help loosen the back muscles. Some models also incorporate heating elements into the lower legs.  The most advanced heating elements are those using infrared heating, which is an optimal method of heat delivery for muscle loosening purposes.

    Intensity Settings:  This indicates that the intensity of the massage motion can be manually or quickly adjusted with a click of a button.  Lower end chairs typically incorporate 2-3 intensity levels, and higher end chairs 3-5.

    Manual Courses:  Manual courses allow you to incrementally control the movements of the massage rollers to customize the massage to your needs; for example to focus on a specific area of the body with a specific massage movement, and particular width or speed.  The higher end the massage chair, the more granular (or full-featured) the manual courses.

    Manual Rated Time:  This is the maximum time that the massage chair manufacturer recommends that you use the chair for a session. The massage chair will automatically turn of at the end of the manual rated time.  The maximum recommended time (or manual rated time) is typically shorter for lower end chairs, and longer for high end massage chairs that are capable of deeper massage motions.

    Multi-Directional Kneading:  Advanced massage chairs offer multi-directional kneading so that the user can change the circular direction of the massage. Changing the kneading direction allows you to receive either an upward or downward stroking massage that changes the effects of the massage on your muscles.

    Quiet Rating: Rated 1-10, this rating is the chairs operating noise level based on a subjective 1-10 scale.

    Rolling, Kneading, Tapping, Shiatsu:  Rolling, kneading and tapping and Shiatsu are the different massage movements that chairs perform. Each massage chair will perform these movements with various degrees of efficiency, and either one movement at a time, or in the case of advanced chairs two or three motions at a time.

    Seat Massage:  Seat massages are offered in certain models. The massage can be administered either by air bags or mechanical vibration to work your buttocks, glutes or hamstrings.

    Shoulder And Neck Massage:  All massage chairs deliver different shoulder and neck massages. Chairs with stroke lengths under 25 inches typically will not reach high enough to deliver a comprehensive neck massage. Also look for chairs that offer neck cut-outs which allow the chair to better focus on your neck and shoulder regions.

    Strength of Massage:  Typically rated on a 1-10 scale.  This measures the strength of the massage rollers, or how deeply they can penetrate muscle fiber during massage motions.. Stronger massage chairs more closely resemble the work of massage therapists. The strength can be softened through intensity adjustments and added back pads.

    Two Directional Kneading:  A different term used for Multi-Directional Kneading. Advanced massage chairs offer multi-directional kneading so that the user can change the circular direction of the massage. Changing the kneading direction allows you to receive and upward or downward stroking massage that changes the effects of the massage on your muscles.

    Vibration:  Vibrating motors add vibration to massage chairs for improved massage and better relaxation. Vibration can also assist in some cases in enhanced blood flow to the treated area. This function should not be confused with tapping.

    Width Adjustment:  The width the massage rollers can be adjusted by the user to change the feel of the massage and to provide a customizable fit.

    Leg and Foot Massage Features

    Extendable Footrest:  This allows the leg massage to rise for added comfort and leg support.

    Foot Massage: Foot massages can be delivered either by inflatable air bags or from kneading mechanical rollers and paddles. Chairs that use mechanical massage are more effective and offer more therapeutic benefits than chairs that use air bags, to provide for reflexology.

    Reflexology:  Another term for foot massage; reflexology is the more traditional term in massage therapy and Asian countries.

    Leg Massage:  Leg massages can be delivered either by inflatable air bags or from kneading mechanical rollers and paddles. Chairs that use mechanical massage are more effective and offer more therapeutic benefits than chairs that use air bags.

    Other Footrest Features:  OK we admit this one is a bucket for various elements of foot massage units incorporated into today’s massage chairs that allow the user to make slight adjustments to the action of the massage rollers and airbags.  They include Width adjustments, length adjustments, intensity adjustments, speed adjustments, padding adjustments. Adjustments allow the user to customize the fit and massage to the individual user.

    Massage Chair Construction

    2 Motor Recline:  This allows the leg and back rest of the chair to recline independently of each other.

    Arm Material:   Just depends on the make and model, but arms on a  massage chair can be constructed ofood, leatherette, leather, fabric or plastic.  Plus some chairs have airbags and channels for the arms and hands, and other don’t (however it’s become almost a standard feature these days, and we figure why forgo this feature if you’re buying a massage chair!)

    Dimensions W x D x H:  Width x Depth x Height in inches (that is, if your massage chair manual is printed in the USA – if in Europe expect metric inputs).

    Power Rating:  The amount of power a massage chair uses or draws to power itself.

    Frame Type:  Different frames offer different levels of stability. Steel square frames are the best followed by standard square frames and then pedestal designs. Weaker frames can cause the chair to shake and squeak during massage.

    Manual Recline:  This means that the chair does not recline automatically and reclines with using manual levers.

    Matching Chair Back Cover:  Matching back covers offer a more traditional appearance to the chair and indicate a more refined design.

    Material or Upholstery:  High end massage recliners are covered in high quality stretchable synthetic leather. This allows the chair to maintain its new appearance much longer despite stress from the massage rollers, heating elements and daily wear and tear. Other materials such as leather and cloth are also used but tend to stretch over time and show wear sooner.

    Number of Massage Rollers:  This is the number of rollers that massage your back. Massage chairs typically use a four roller system although other models use two. Be wary of chairs that offer more than four rollers as this means the rollers are most likely fixed in position and cannot travel up and down your spine.

    Number of Motors:  The quantity of motors effects the strength and durability of a massage chair. As a rule of thumb, the more motors the better.

    One Touch Recline:  One touch recline allows the chair to move to its fully reclined position automatically with a click of a button.

    One-Touch Return:  One touch return allows the chair to move to its full upright position automatically with a touch of a button.

    Reclining Angle:  Reclining angle measures the fully reclined position of the massage chair (180 degrees is flat)

    Removable Arms:  Removable arms make the chair easier to transport around the house through narrow doorways and around tight corners.  In some larger chairs you won’t be able to move it inside without taking off the arms.

    Removable Back Pad:  Removable back pads offer the user a choice regarding the amount of padding that rests between the massage rollers and the user. More padding softens the massage and less padding strengthens the massage.  Some pads are simply pieces of fabric or foam that come with the chair.  Higher end chairs typically incorporate removal back pads via a zipper or velcro.

    Reduction Pad:  A different term sometimes applied to Removable Back Pad.

    Single Motor Recline:  Single motor recline means that the leg rest and back rest automatically recline together versus independently.

    Chair Weight: Weight of massage chair measured in pounds.  Typically this number will be an indication of the massage chair’s weight outside the box and not including packing materials.

    Weight Rating:  The maximum weight of the user for which the massage chair was designed. A higher weight rating typically indicates a more robust frame and components design, to tolerate larger-framed users.

    Return Policy:  Each massage chair brand and retailer has a different return policy, and often times this varies widely. Always consult your retailer on specific models of interest.

    Warranty:  Warranties are offered through the chair manufacturers.  Typically warranties will include internal or mechanical components, and not cover external components such as the remote control (if it is dropped and cracked, vs. malfunctions) or upholstery.  Additional warranties that extend the duration of coverage can often be purchased at extra costs. Warranties vary in their coverage over parts, labor, shipping and time – so it’s worth comparing them side-by-side if you are trying to narrow your purchase from among a few different models.

Want to see our 2018 Massage Chair Buyers Guide?  Click Here