Table of Contents
- 1 How to Choose a Good Massage Chair
- 2 Features, Features, and More Features
- 3 Core Massage Chair Technologies
- 4 Therapeutic Features
- 5 Convenience Features
- 6 Making Your Selection
- 7 How to Choose a Massage Chair Conclusion
Are you in the market for a massage chair, but overwhelmed by the sheer number of choices available?
Are you at your wit’s end trying to navigate through the labyrinth of features available to settle on the one that’s right for you?
In this piece, we’ll step you through the process of how to choose a good massage chair, so the one you ultimately buy will be a perfect fit, meeting all your needs at a price you can afford.
We’ll cut through the noise and distil the process down to its essentials, so you’ve got a clear, no-nonsense blueprint to follow that will make finding the right model a snap. Let’s get right to it!
How to Choose a Good Massage Chair
There are two key questions to ask before you even start. They are:
- How much do you have to spend?
- Why do you want one?
Your answers to these two questions provide the framework that will guide your thinking through the rest of the process. One you have that information, what remains regarding figuring out how to choose a massage chair is a lot simpler, but answering them can be more complicated than you might first think.
How much do you have to spend?
The budget side of the equation is easy. You know your expenses, and you know how much you have to spend. In terms of broadly classifying massage chairs, use the following as a general guide:
- Under $1500 – Value-Priced Chairs – These are inexpensive, but they trade features for the reduction in price. In some cases, massage chairs in this category rely on outdated tech (though sometimes well-implemented) technology. In others, they simply use a scaled back or narrowly focused feature set.
- $1500 - $6500 – Mid-Range Chairs – This broad price range includes the vast majority of the massage chairs on the market today.
You’ll find a variety of options here, from well-appointed generalist chairs to tightly focused chairs that utilize a more limited, but exceptionally well-implemented set of features designed to meet specific needs.
- $6500 and Up – High-End Chairs – This is a vast category that can extend as high as $14,000 or more, and of course, the more money you’re willing to spend the more features, and better implementations you can expect.
Some of the chairs in this group are insane. They do just about everything and include plenty of convenience features that make them a joy to use and own.
Even though the chairs at the low end of the price spectrum are more limited, feature-wise, there are excellent models in every price bracket, so whatever your budget is, you can find something you’ll be pleased with.
Why do you want one?
The second question is a bit trickier, but here, the industry makes it a little easier for you. There are two basic types of massage chairs: Therapeutic and Hobbyist.
Therapeutic chairs are designed to meet specific medical or chiropractic needs. The reality is that 8 out of 10 Americans will suffer from severe back pain at some point in their lives, and the numbers aren’t all that different in other parts of the world.
While relief from back pain is the most common reason why people consider buying a therapeutic massage chair, they can certainly be used to treat a number of other conditions, including neck and shoulder pain, leg pain, high blood pressure, and stress-related conditions.
Based on what your specific needs are, your “ideal” feature set will change.
Hobbyist chairs are more generalized in nature. They often include some therapeutic features, but tend to place as much or more emphasis on conveniences like MP3 support, memory slots that allow you to program and save your favorite massage settings, LED lights, and the like.
Of course, there’s considerable overlap, and just because your primary needs are therapeutic, that doesn’t mean you don’t appreciate certain convenience features too, but we’ll get to that in the next section.
So – how much do you have to spend, and what do you need it for? After all, if you suffer from chronic back pain, sciatica, or if you have a job that sees you spending several hours a day, all of those point to a very different set of features.
On the other hand, if all you want is a chair to kick back in and enjoy a soothing massage at the end of a long workday, that’s going to lead you down yet another different path.
Features, Features, and More Features
So once you’ve gotten the answers to the two fundamental questions, the next step is to identify which massage chair features are most important to you.
Features fall broadly into three categories:
- Core Massage Chair Technologies
- Therapeutic Features
- Convenience Features
The best approach here is just to list all the ones you’re interested in, then rank them in order of importance to you. Let’s take a look at each of them in turn.
Making Your Selection
So, now that you have a sense of what features are available, the real fun begins.
Once you know what your budget is, and once you’ve got a good feel for why you want one, start thinking about what features are most important to you. If you wind up listing more therapeutic features. A good rule of thumb is:
- Pick five features (including core features) for a value-priced chair
- Nine for a mid-range chair
- As many as you want for a high-end chair
Then, base your search on the collection of features you’ve prioritized. You may not find an exact match, but with the vast number of chairs on the market today, you’ll come quite close to finding your ideal!
How to Choose a Massage Chair Conclusion
As you can see, the question of how to choose a good massage chair is a lot more complex than first meets the eye.
Using this process, though, makes finding the perfect massage chair for you and your family a simple proposition. You’ll have a clear sense of what you want, and how many features you can reasonably expect to find at each price point, bearing in mind of course, that there will be some variance from one model to the next.