Pros and Cons of an Inversion Chair & How to Use It

a man in an inversion chair

Are you wondering what an inversion chair is? Curious about the potential benefits, as well as what potential side effects may exist? Then keep reading, because we’re going to cover all of those details for you. If you’re new to the concept, then the idea of hanging upside down may seem bizarre–but according to some folks, it’s an excellent way to benefit your health.

We’ll also be discussing the difference between an inversion chair and an inversion table. Looking at these differences can help you choose between the two types of inversion therapy.

What Is an Inversion Chair?

An inversion chair is a seat which is suspended on a frame. Get in and fasten the straps, and then you’ll be able to rotate the seat to an almost upside-down position.

These chairs are very similar to inversion tables. However, an inversion table keeps your body straight, while an inversion chair allows you to maintain a seated position. This allows you to experience a gentler type of inversion therapy.

While the full benefits of hanging upside down like this haven’t been well studied, research done in 1978 found that “inverted positioning for short periods significantly increased spinal length.”

Using inversion therapy allows gravity to stretch out your back, rather than compressing it the way it typically does when you’re standing normally. This means that if you’re experiencing back pain, an inversion chair may be a great way to get some relief.

This type of traction isn’t a long-term solution for those who are dealing with chronic back issues, but it can certainly provide short-term relief. It may also solve minor back problems, for those who simply have a sore back due to poor sleeping posture or some other minor complaint.

Other benefits may include many other things as well, according to some proponents of inversion therapy. Cleared sinuses, better flexibility, reduced headaches, improved circulation, faster workout recovery, and better sleep are all said to be benefits of using an inversion table or chair.

Pros and Cons of Inversion Chairs

an inversion chair and its features

Inversion Chair Advantages

  • Using the chair doesn’t take long. Unlike other forms of back relief, using an inversion chair doesn’t require much planning or time, which means it’s a great way to get immediate relief.
  • Inversion chairs are gentler than tables. The flat surface of an inversion table means that all of your weight is suspended by your ankles, which can result in soreness and pain. The setup of an inversion chair distributes your weight more evenly, making it a far gentler experience.
  • Flipping upside-down on an inversion chair is also easier. Turning an inversion table requires you to redistribute your weight in a way that some people find difficult to do. However, an inversion chair makes the process far simpler and more intuitive.
  • Even if you don’t suffer from back pain, there are many potential health benefits of inversion therapy. Even the simple act of uninterrupted relaxation can be soothing to your health!

Inversion Chair Disadvantages

Vertigo is one potential side effect of using an inversion chair. If you feel dizzy or nauseated easily, then using this device may be unpleasant for you. If you have other health conditions, using inversion therapy may not be possible. Heart conditions, high blood pressure, as well as glaucoma and other eye conditions, may make it too dangerous for you to use. Investing in an inversion chair can be cost-prohibitive. If you have a tight budget, it’s wise to look into whether or not your health insurance will cover the cost.

How to Use an Inversion Chair

Before you even invest in an inversion chair, you should double-check with your doctor. For most people, there shouldn’t be any problem. However, pregnancy, heart conditions, high blood pressure, recent injuries, and some other medical conditions can prevent you from using an inversion chair. Getting your physician’s approval is important.

When you’re ready to try inverting yourself for the first time, you’ll want to have a friend or family member nearby. Learning how to setup and use the chair may seem easy, but you really don’t want to find yourself stuck in an upside-down position without someone nearby to assist you.

Be sure to strap yourself in properly, reading the instruction manual to make sure you don’t miss any steps or secure yourself improperly. Adjust the straps and other parts of the seat to fit your body well.

Start out slowly, rather than trying to flip yourself over right away. Lean the seat backward until you’re just slightly inverted, at about 15 degrees or so. Then pause for a minute or so. If you feel well after that, you can invert the chair further. If you’re feeling ill or stressed, slowly return upright and try again later rather than forcing yourself back further.

Fully inverting yourself doesn’t mean that you have to be hanging totally upside-down. Many people stop at about 60 degrees, and you may find yourself comfortable at an even less severe angle. Once you’ve reached this level, relax for as long as you find comfortable, up to five minutes, before gradually returning yourself to an upright position.

Repeat this process as needed to alleviate your back pain.

Bottom Line

Getting used to the process and feeling of using an inversion chair can take a while. Your body isn’t accustomed to being in these positions, so you may find yourself surprised at how odd the feeling is. But once you’ve adjusted to the feeling, being upside-down can be surprisingly relaxing. The reduced strain on your joints and spine is a great feeling.

Using an inversion chair after a long day of work can help you enjoy the rest of your evening and sleep better. Inversion therapy is certainly worth a try if your current methods of stretching and relaxing aren’t enough and you want to try something new.

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Steven D. Schiller -

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