To chose the best massaging recliner, customers should determine how much money they wish to spend on the chair, and the intensity level of the massage they want to receive. Inexpensive models can provide stress relief, but may not target problem muscle areas. Deep tissue massages are available in high-end chairs which cost up to ten times that of the base massaging versions. Additional features to look for include pre-programmed massage sessions, remote controls, and heated seats.
The most economically priced type of massaging recliner is one that is compatible with a desk. This chair resembles a traditional high backed executive office chair and is fashioned around a durable metal frame. Most models are capable of reclining slightly and are sold with a non-massaging ottoman. These recliners are typically sold for a few hundred US Dollars (USD) and feature basic vibrational motors. Chairs are equipped with between six and 10 motors for massaging purposes, and vibrate in high tension areas, such as the lower back, shoulders, and thighs. This type of recliner can relax the user and relieve stress, however it is not designed to provide the same benefits as those of a deep tissue massage.
Customers who require a higher intensity level of therapy may wish to invest in a massaging recliner that uses rotational kneading balls. The rotational motors replicate the motions created by a human hand and wrist, and move in circular patterns over common stress points. Tension knots are greatly reduced by this type of movement, and blood flow can be increased to problem areas. Recliners are typically sold with a non-massaging ottoman or are built with a massaging fold out foot rest. This type of chair is typically sold for around $1,000 USD and is slightly larger than desk compatible models.
A full body shiatsu massaging recliner is the best type of chair available for deep tissue massage and intensive muscle therapy. These chairs are equipped with rotational motors that are free floating, and may be positioned in any location along the neck, shoulders, and back. A massaging seat operates separately to target both the thighs and buttocks. The chair features an air ottoman that is designed to surround the calves and ankles with firm, massaging pressure that improves blood flow and reduces swelling in the lower extremities. This type of recliner is the most expensive, traditionally sold between $3,000 and $5,000 USD, and is one of the few massage chair models that has been endorsed by the American Chiropractic Association (ACA).
Other features which customers may find useful in a massaging recliner are built in massage programs, an attachable remote control, and heat therapy. All three types of chair offer several models that include five to ten pre-programmed massage sessions which alternate the motor speeds and locations to simulate receiving a hands-on massage. The remote control allows the user to change the settings manually, or begin a new program without moving from the chair. Heat therapy warms the chair along the seat and lower back areas to relax and comfort sore muscles.