Can Massage Chairs Hurt Your Back?

Can Massage Chairs Hurt Your Back?

Massage chairs are designed to make you feel better, but can they actually harm your back? The short answer is yes. The long answer is that the potential risks of using a massage chair on your back depend on how often you use it and what type of chair you’re using.

The more intense the massage, the more likely it is that you’ll experience some bad side effects. Generally speaking, though, most people don’t experience any problems. If you do find yourself experiencing pain or discomfort after sitting in a massage chair, it’s best to stop using it immediately.

You may be too sensitive to certain features or need some adjustments made to your chair before resuming use.

Are massage chairs supposed to hurt?

Massage chairs are typically used on people who are suffering from lower back pain, so it’s natural that many people are concerned that sitting in the chair for a long time could potentially cause problems. Pain is usually triggered when the disc between the vertebrae begins to spasm and “shut down” the nerve endings in the spine.

Spasms that cause this sort of pain can be set off by a number of things, including muscle stress, strain, and fatigue, or overexertion. When people get too tense from sitting in a massage chair, the discs can act “like a knotted rope,” preventing the nerve endings from firing correctly.

“Over time, this improper firing can lead to chronic pain and discomfort,” says Steve Greenberg, D.P.T.

Can a massage chair bruise your back?

This depends on the type of chair you’re sitting in, and not all massage chairs are created equally. An upright massage chair, like the various LazyBoy models, can bruise your back if you are sitting for too long or make contact with it while leaning back.

On the other hand, some recliner chairs have a wider base that may not be as forgiving to people with bad posture. Even so, the most common problems are probably minor pain or discomfort. If you’re still suffering from discomfort two weeks or so after using the chair, see your doctor.

It could be a sign of a more serious underlying condition, such as a pinched nerve, muscle imbalance, or spinal stenosis. The downside to most massage chairs is that they can put your back at a higher risk of injury.

Can massage chair cause injury?

It can be tough to know what might happen if you try to massage your back in a massage chair. The good news is that massage chairs are designed with safety in mind. Most massage chairs have a three-point restraint system, which uses a harness and other standard guidelines to safely keep your back supported and your body balanced.

If you experience any trouble or discomfort while sitting in a massage chair, check the backrest. A strap near the back of the chair may be tight or uncomfortable. Some chairs may be better suited to sitting more toward the front of the seat or near the floor.

Is it safe to put the seat in an upright position? Most massage chairs come with a footrest designed for either sitting or reclining.

Negative effects of massage chairs

Stiffness: One of the biggest issues that people run into when they try using massage chairs is the fact that some of them can be extremely stiff. You’ll often find them in the corner of the store in the “restricted” or “L3” category, which describes chairs that are designed for maximum back support. This means that most are extremely stiff and difficult to move, even if you adjust the seat and the height of the controls.

Complications: Another issue that people tend to run into with massage chairs is that they tend to give them a bad reputation. A large percentage of massagers don’t go the extra mile to make sure that the massage chair works properly and doesn’t cause issues for your body, especially if you’re using it too often.

Does massage chair help back pain?

This type of chair has a fixed, arm-rest style seat. If you’re feeling stiff, you can swing your legs back and forth to make sure they don’t get sore. If your back muscles are too tight, you can always adjust the seats to be a little more comfortable.

A massage chair that’s adjustable and has an adjustable armrest allows you to sit however you’d like. This type of massage chair also has an adjustable armrest. Once you’re seated, you can loosen or tighten it, depending on how you like to be positioned. With a fully adjustable massage chair, your personal setup is yours to create.

Can I use massage chair everyday?

While the risks vary, massage chairs are generally safe enough to use regularly over the course of a few weeks. That said, they’re more uncomfortable than anything, and regular usage can quickly take a toll on your back. Don’t use the chair unless you can handle the symptoms, because it may get even worse before it gets better.

Can I use massage chair while pregnant?

Maybe. Most massage chairs are sturdy enough to withstand several hours of use without damage. It’s worth noting that heavy users are at greater risk of injury and overheating, so it’s important to do your research before committing to the chair. You might want to opt for a lightweight, portable chair instead, since you may need to move it around and sit in different positions when you need to use it.

Do massage chairs actually work?

Your therapist will want to see how long you sit in a massage chair and what your posture and movements are. They’ll be able to determine if you’re comfortable in a specific position and how long you’d be able to tolerate it before feeling pain or discomfort.

So, how long do you usually sit in a massage chair? We asked you and you told us that you typically sit in a chair for 60 minutes to an hour. This may seem like a short amount of time, but keep in mind that you have to apply a lot of pressure to the pressure points of your back. It’s more than a quick message!

Massage chairs do have their advantages. If you’re looking for a quick, affordable, and effective way to alleviate back pain, massage chairs can do the trick.

Are vibrating chairs bad for you?

Sometimes, even more intense massages may cause a person to experience a similar feeling as a vibration, which is what some people refer to as muscle spasms. These are not dangerous, though. Most people can sit in a vibration chair for a few minutes and feel no ill effects at all.

It’s important to remember that, for every potential side effect, there are probably just a few people who have experienced serious side effects. While a massage chair or vibrating massage chair may not be safe, they are unlikely to cause serious injury, either.

When should you not use a massage chair?

Massage chairs are ideal for people who spend most of the day sitting at a computer or other desk job. Most machines allow you to adjust the height of the seat to accommodate people who are taller or shorter.

You should also know that a lot of people who work at a desk day in and day out suffer from bad posture. Sitting upright for eight hours a day with your lower back leaning forward will definitely take a toll on your spine.

If you sit in a massage chair for long periods of time, you could experience a situation known as “sitting reflex.” This occurs when the muscles in your lower back lengthen and contract, forcing your pelvis forward. In doing so, your pelvis forces your spine upward, potentially leading to increased pressure on your discs.


If you’re interested in using a massage chair, it’s important to think carefully about whether you’ll benefit from the use of the massage chair or how often you’ll need to use it. It’s also important to understand how they work and what you can do to minimize the risks of experiencing any uncomfortable side effects.

In the end, the right massage chair will provide a more relaxing experience than you could have with a heated bath or a warm seat. It’s something that can make the stresses of everyday life less of an issue and provide you with a sense of well-being that lasts long after your session ends.

Are Massage Chairs Worth It?


Lynn has been writing at our blog for over two years. She currently writes about topics such as sleep, massage therapy, and cooking. Recently, she has teamed up with other bloggers to write about their life stories. Lynn is also a certified massage therapist who loves to express herself through cooking recipes she finds on Pinterest or food blogs. Lynn's blog is an outlet where she can share her passions with others while encouraging them to live the best version of themselves.

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