The 3rd and Final Part of my Interview with Pres. of Inada USA, Cliff Levin

Here is the 3rd and final video of my interview with Cliff. I hope you have enjoyed this series and learned much of the Inada products and the Inada way of doing things:

Transcript of Interview with Cliff Levin, President of Inada USA Massage Chairs (Part Three)

Dr. Alan Weidner: Well, I think also it intimidates, I think the most intimidating thing about a massage chair for the new buyer is the remote control, thinking that they can’t learn it or they can’t get it. But, yeah, I’d say that the Sogno and the Yu•Me are very, very simple to use. I found the Human Touch remotes also to be very simple. I think the Panasonic and the Sanyo are probably the most complicated ones to deal with, but again, all remotes, you get accustomed to it over time. But boy, just for ease-of-use right off the bat, Yu•Me and Sogno are quite easy. Now, one thing I was just thinking of, we talked about any upgrades to the Sogno, if there’s any plans for that, but I was thinking about this the other day, people ask now more and more about zero gravity. This is a feature that we’re seeing in more and more chairs. I think it’s a bit of a fad right now. It was kind of pioneered maybe, or introduced to the market primarily by Human Touch, I think, but it seems like everybody’s kinda gotten on the zero-gravity bandwagon, even the Yu•Me has a zero-gravity feature, though not explicit on the remote, in the rocking motion it does go to a zero-gravity position. Is that something that you think the Sogno may ever, they may ever integrate in to the Sogno? Or have they discussed it, is it even a topic of conversation? Continue reading “The 3rd and Final Part of my Interview with Pres. of Inada USA, Cliff Levin”

Part 2 of My Interview with Cliff Levin, Pres. of Inada USA

Here is part 2 of my 3-part interview with Cliff Levin, President of Inada USA massage chairs:

Transcript of Interview with Cliff Levin, President of Inada USA Massage Chairs (Part Two)

Dr. Alan Weidner: The Japanese, because of the cost of the Japanese manufacturing, we have seen other companies moving from Japan to China. Panasonic’s now moved all their manufacturing to China. I believe, I could be wrong on this, you may correct me on this, but I think Sanyo’s also moved to China. Of course, Osaki, Omega, Human Touch, are all Chinese-made chairs, and do you think there’s going to be a trend, where one day that Inada might start manufacturing some chairs in China, or they may already do, for other parts of the world, how does China fit in to Inada’s manufacturing picture, if at all? Continue reading “Part 2 of My Interview with Cliff Levin, Pres. of Inada USA”

Osaki 4000 Massage Chair vs. Inada Sogno Dreamwave (Part 2)

Comparing the Osaki OS-4000 to the Inada Sogno (Part 2)

This is Part 2 of a 2 part comparative review of the Osaki OS-4000 and the Inada Sogno Dreamwave. In Part 1, I discussed 5 general differences between these two very popular massage chairs, but today I will go into specific chair features and functions to help you in your due diligence.

Osaki 4000 Massage Chair

6. Zero-Gravity – The Osaki 4000 has a zero gravity feature which, by definition, is a 30 degree tilt of the seat in the zero gravity position. The Inada Sogno’s seat stays horizontal during all programs. Zero gravity is a great feature for decompressing the low back.

7. Airbags – The Inada Sogno Dreamwave massage chair is an airbag monster…over 100 airbags. The Osaki 4000 is a little more typical of most massage chairs with 32 airbags. Rollers are typically used for the spine, whereas airbags are used for every other part of the body, i.e. legs, feet, thighs, arms, shoulders, waist, etc.

8. Dreamwave Technology – One of the unique therapeutic features of the Inada Sogno is the use of airbags to move the seat from side to side and up and down in a figure 8 motion. It introduces passive motion to the pelvis and low back in a very gentle swaying motion that is very soothing to the user. The Sogno is the only massage chair that has this feature, as far as I know. The Osaki has airbags in the seat but not at all like the Dreamwave technology of Inada.

9. Thigh Massage– a lot of the newer chairs have airbags that compress the outer aspect of the thighs, where the IlioTibial Bands (ITB) are located. The Osaki 4000 and the Inada Sogno have these airbags, however the airbags on the Sogno actually massage the ITB in a wavelike motion and it feels like a true massage. The Osaki 4000 simply compresses against the thighs without the feeling that much is being done therapeutically. If you’ve ever had low back, knee, or hip problems, the ITBs are probably pretty tight on you and the Inada Sogno will make you realize how sore they truly are!

Inada Sogno Massage Chair

10. Heat – Both chairs have heat, but the heat of the Osaki 4000 is definitely more noticeable than the subtle sacral heat of the Sogno. If you like feeling the warmth, the Osaki wins that hands-down.

11. Cervical Traction Device – Inada innovated this feature. It is a headpiece that has airbags to massage the neck and the trapezia muscles (you know…the muscles at the top of your shoulders that get tight when you sit at a computer all day). It is a phenomenal feature in the Sogno. The Osaki 4000 has a headpiece that mimics Inada’s Cervical Traction Device, but doesn’t have the airbag massage that the Sogno does.

12. Arm Airbags – Both chairs have arm airbags, but the Osaki 4000 airbags basically just cover the forearm and wrists, whereas the Inada Sogno has extensive airbags that compress the fingers, wrist, forearm, and upper arm.

13. Roller Track Length – The vertical roller track length of the Inada Sogno is 28.5″; the roller track length of the Osaki 4000 is 30″. It feels like the Inada massages lower down into the buttocks, so I would say that the Osaki goes higher up the neck with the extra 1.5″.

14. Height and Weight Recommendations – Inada has always had the motto “If you can fit, you can sit.” So, regardless of your weight, if you can fit in the chair, it will function just fine. Osaki, on the other hand and like most massage chairs, express a weight limit for the chair’s optimum function, and that is 265 lbs. As for height, the Inada can cater anyone comfortably from 4’11” to 6’4″; Osaki best fits someone from 5’4″ to 6’4″.

15. # of Motors – Inada has 13, Osaki has 7.

16.  Remote Control – The Osaki 4000 has a pedestal remote, the Inada has a free remote that tucks into a small side pocket.

Those are the major differences between the chairs. Some features that they both have include body scan technology, ottoman length adjustment, calf and foot massager, quad-style rollers that knead, tap, and compress, vibration, auto and manual settings, and a stretch program.

I hope this assists you in your massage chair buying research. After reading through the comparisons, you will have to decide if the price of both chairs is justified. Remember you can always email me at alan@massage-chair-relief.com or call me at 801-417-8240 to ask any other questions. I am always at your disposal.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com 

Massage Chair Arm Airbags

Arm Airbags – Depends on the Massage Chair Model

Arm airbags is pretty much a standard feature in most massage chair models nowadays. People have come to expect arm airbags to some degree. As you may or may not know, arm airbags simply inflate and compress on the parts of the arm covered by the airbags. Most chairs will inflate and compress in a wave-like manner to simulate circulation direction from the extremity to the heart.

Omega Montage Premier massage chair

There are different modes that various massage chairs use to administer the airbag therapy to the arms. For example, the Omega Montage Premier and the Osaki 2000 massage chairs have clamps attached to the arm rests that can be slid from along the arm rests to be positioned at the forearm position or all the way down to the wrist and hand positions. When we used to have the old Inada D-5 Robochair in our showroom, I used to love using this feature on my hands and fingers. It felt wonderful. From years of knuckle popping, my fingers tend to get a little swollen and tight and this type of airbag massage felt great on my fingers.

Another style of arm airbag massage works similarly to the calf massage of the ottoman. An example of that type of arm massage would be the Osaki 6000 or 7000 massage chair. It basically has an arm “slot” wherein the arm is placed and an airbag above the arm and another below the arm squeeze simultaneously, again in a wave-like motion, to compress the arm…most from wrist to forearm. Here is a video demonstrating the use of the arm airbags in the Osaki 6000 massage chair:

Panasonic uses a nifty arm massage feature hidden underneath the arm rests. The top of the arm rest lifts up and the user slides the arms underneath the top of the arm rest. Then, airbags above and below the arm  inflate and compress. This type of arm massage works best on the hand and bottom part of the forearm.

The Inada Sogno Dreamwave massage chair is the first chair to have full arm massage. It has airbags that inflate on the hand, wrist, and forearm, but then also has an airbag on the upper arm as well.

Airbag intensity can be adjusted to the comfort of the user. Some folks don’t care much for airbags at all, regardless of whether they are on the arms or legs. But, for those that enjoy them and use them they can provide a very soothing massage of the extremities.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

 

Massage Chair Airbags – Helpful or a Waste of Air?

When the massage chair was first introduced to the market in 1962, it was Mr. Inada’s basic invention of rollers going up and down the spine. The concept of airbags did not come for some time after that. Nowadays, we see airbags in more parts of the body than there are rollers. For example, in some of the more feature-rich massage chairs, you will see airbags in the following places:

1. feet and calves
2. buttock
3. thigh
4. waist
5. shoulders – front, back, side, and rear!
6. arms and hands
7. trapezia muscles
8. neck
9. head (the new Osaki 7000 massage chair actually has a headband that you put around your skull that has airbags that massage your skull and suboccipital muscles…ideal for stress headache sufferers)

Osaki OS-6000 airbags

I’m sure there will be even more places that the manufacturing companies think of to put an airbag. Who knows, they may even be testing airbags for the front of your body for all I know.

Well, I guess the big question that I get from massage chair shoppers regarding airbags is not “How many airbags does this or that massage chair have?”, but “Do airbags really do anything?”

Great question and here is my input on that query. The primary function of airbags is to compress a body part. In some cases like in the Inada Sogno Dreamwave, airbags actually serve to also move the seat which induces passive motion to the pelvis and low back. A wonderful feature that is very unique to that model. But, for all the rest of the airbags, I can’t think of any other purpose than to compress body parts.

If you’ve tried out a massage chair, you’ve probably experienced the foot and calf massage. This is typically the most popular and commonly-seen airbag set on most chairs. You felt the compression on your calves and feet. For some of you, the compression was too much and too intense. For others, it is not enough or just right. Well, imagine having circulation problems. For poor circulation, many folks experience swelling of the feet and ankles. And, what is the typical home treatment for that? Compression hosiery/socks. Can you see how the airbags of a massage chair can mimic that compression, not just passively like with socks, but actively with motion of the airbags starting from the feet and moving upwards in a wave-like manner towards the heart?

Now, if it is helpful for swollen ankles, which we see that it is, can you see how it may serve a normal foot and ankle just by enhancing circulation back to the heart. In this case, I believe that the airbag compression encourages healthy circulation from foot to heart. I suppose the same could be said for hand and arm airbag compression, as these components also “milk” the body part towards the heart.

Massage Chair Airbags Do More Than Just Compress…

Some airbags compress not to improve circulation, but to move a body part in a particular direction. For example, we are seeing many massage chairs come into the market now that have waist airbags that push one side of the low back forward and then the other. Simultaneous to that, the airbags of the seat may inflate on one side or the other to induce a rotation of the low back. You see, on one side the waist airbag is inflated while on the other side the seat airbag is inflated. This induces rotation to the low back, which, in the past, has been a difficult motion to reproduce passively in a massage chair. I have felt that rotation in many of the massage chairs in my showroom and it is actually fantastic and appears to have a real therapeutic benefit for the soft tissues of the low back.

Now, as far as the other airbags go, I suppose it is truly a personal preference. An airbag in some body location may be just what you need to overcome some pain or other distress. What may work for one may not affect another the same way. I have heard from clients who thought that the shoulder airbag massage of the Inada Sogno or Osaki 6000 was the answer to a chronic trapezius muscle tightness. But, for others, they didn’t think it did anything but annoy them. So, as the spanish would say, “Cada cabeza es un mundo” or, in plain English, “to each his own.”

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

 

Are All Chinese Massage Chairs The Same??

I got a great question from a massage chair shopper this morning about imitation massage chairs out there that look a like but are from different distributors. Here is the question and my answer:

Massage Chair Question:

Hi Alan

I have really appreciated finding the information you have provided in your blog during my journey of discovery educating myself on massage chairs. I am interested in your experience about chairs out of China. I have read your articles about the Osaki OS-7000 and your view that for the price is quite impressive. It is interesting that I have seen a number of companies trying to sell a chair that looks and reads exactly the same, under a different name! Do the Chinese factories send the same chair to any importer, or are they simply replicas that do not perform the same way? By way of example, here is a website of a company in China called Life Power that sends an identical looking chair to an Australian importer. http://life-power.en.alibaba.com/product/486151823-212080271/2011_new_zero_gravity_LP_6100.html. I am interested to get your perspective on the Chinese practices and if they are undermining the Osaki product by selling the same thing under a different badge, or if it is just copying of a good product.

Regards Scott

My Massage Chair Answer:

Hi, Scott

Thanks for your insightful email. Great questions. Here is what I know based on industry knowledge and my own experience with massage chairs…

1. Most, if not all, chinese-made chairs come out of three major manufacturing plants in China. Many companies around the world then buy the chair models from these “big 3” and then white label them under their own name. For example, Osaki does it, Fujita does it, Omega does it, etc. So, if you see a model somewhere else that looks just like another companies model, then you can be pretty sure that the chair comes from the same plant in China. I believe that most of the look-a-likes function the same, with maybe a little feature or design twist to make it look vastly different from another importers white label product from the same plant. 

Osaki 7000 Massage Chair
Osaki 7000 Massage Chair
I get emails all the time from Chinese companies wanting me to buy chairs directly from them that are “just like” other models that I already carry. And why, you ask, don’t I import them to increase my profit margin? Well, it all has to do with the kind of warranty support I am willing to give (or not give). That leads to this point…

The primary thing, in my mind, that would differentiate one US importing distributor from another is not just their warranty (they ALL claim to have great warranties!) but how good their customer support is after the sale. Can you get a hold of them by phone or do you always have to leave a message? Do they get back to you promptly when you do leave a message? Do they say one thing on their warranty before you buy, but then the story changes after the purchase when the need is there, but the legal terminology in their warranty contract is just nebulous enough that they can get out of servicing your chair. 

Those are the primary reasons why I went with Osaki over other chair companies…because I trusted their customer support department and they have taken good care of my clients. Any problems which have arisen, they have taken care of them for me. Plus, I can reach a live person almost every time I call…and that means a lot to me, as well. 

2. My experience with massage chairs have led me to believe that the Japanese-made chairs are of a better quality build than the Chinese-made chairs. I say this only because of the number of breakdowns I have witnessed in my own chairs in my showroom as well as the feedback I get from concerned owners who often will call me first when there is a problem with their massage chair. 

3. Although the Japanese-made massage chairs are better quality products, they are also more expensive as a general rule. That is why I have said in other blog posts that chairs like the Osaki 6000 and Osaki 7000 massage chair are a great bang for the buck. You get a lot of features, a good warranty and warranty support, and a screaming price. If you are looking for a good bang for your buck for a Japanese-made chair, I might suggest the Sanyo 7700, the Inada Doctor’s Choice 3A, or the remaining Panasonic 30007 stock, which is still Japanese-made (manufacturing moving to China after the current Panasonic stock runs out).

I hope this assists you in some way with your massage chair buying experience. Please feel free to contact me anytime with more questions. I am also reachable via telephone at 801-651-2026.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Massage Chair Warranty Confusion?

When Exactly Does A Massage Chair Warranty Begin??

I get this question a lot and, to be frank, I have always just said “When the chair ships out.” That sounds pretty good and most folks believed it…heck, I believed it. Well, I was discussing a massage chair purchase with a customer on the phone yesterday and the subject came up again.

This time, doggonit, I really wanted to know. I actually don’t like just saying stuff to satisfy a client, if I am not sure myself of the answer. So, I took it upon myself this morning to contact all of my massage chair manufacturer reps and find out exactly what the policy is regarding when the warranty kicks in.

Is it when the chair is purchased by the client? Is it when I place the order with the massage chair company? Is it when the chair ships? How about when it delivers? Of course this only really matters if a problem arises the week that the warranty is supposed to expire. Otherwise, a week or two won’t make that big of a difference. But, what happens if that scenario plays out…one year and two days after the client has purchased their massage chair, the warranty “expires” and something goes wrong with the chair. Will the massage chair company honor the warranty from the date of delivery to the home or business of the client? Well, here are the answers for each of the companies for which I sell massage chairs:

HT Massage Chairs

1. Human Touch – The company policy is that the warranty begins when the chair is purchased by the end user. So, I asked what happens if the order is placed and the chair is back ordered for a week or month…or more! I was told by the customer support rep at Human Touch that Human Touch is flexible in situations like that. If it comes to a situation like that, Human Touch will consider the delivery date as the beginning point of the warranty. Remember, this not in writing as company policy but it seems to be a general rule of thumb for customer support folks at Human Touch.

2. Inada – The purchase date of an Inada massage chair is considered the beginning of the warranty but, speaking with Inada directly, I am told that should a problem arise during that critical “end of warranty” period, Inada will check the Proof of Delivery date and go with that  date. No fuss, no muss.

3. Osaki – Osaki considers the delivery date to the client’s home or business as the beginning of the warranty period.

4. Infinite Therapeutics – Like Osaki, the company policy for IT chairs also considers the delivery date as the beginning of the warranty period.

5. Panasonic and  Sanyo – Same company now, so very similar policies. The purchase date is considered the beginning of the warranty, but should a situation arise, as I described above, Panasonic and Sanyo will side with the delivery date as the warranty beginning.

You know, come to think of it, it might not be a bad idea at all to save the receipt from the shipping company on the day of your massage chair delivery. You just might need it 1, 2, 3, or 5 years down the road if a problem arises on the “anniversary” of your warranty.

6. Omega – Date of purchase. Now, Omega was the only company that didn’t get back to me, so I can’t speak for them about using the Delivery Date as the warranty beginning. But, they are good folks over there, so I would assume that would be the case. When I hear from them I will share that info in this blog with an update.

By the way, if your massage chair comes with a warranty registration card, PLEASE MAKE SURE that you fill it out and send it back to the massage chair company. For some companies, like Omega, the policy is “no warranty registration card, no warranty.” So, just like saving the delivery receipt, make sure to send in the warranty registration card, should there be one with the massage chair you purchased.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Dreamwave Technology

What is the “Dreamwave” in the Inada Sogno Massage Chair?

The Inada Sogno Dreamwave massage chairhas a very unique feature to the chair that you won’t find on any other manufacturer’s massage chairs.  It has a seat that moves to allow for passive movement in the lower back and hip joints.  It is called “Dreamwave” technology and is unique to and proprietary to Inada.

Inada Sogno Massage Chair
Inada Sogno Massage Chair

This is a tremendous feature for anybody who may have chronic or acute low back and hip pain.  Typically, when a person has chronic or acute low back pain they tend to not want to move a whole lot, but what this does overtime is allow those joints to stiffen up, lose range of motion and possibly calcify so that they stay frozen permanently.  This only keeps the pain cycle progressing and perpetuating.  So, when a feature like this seat is utilized it can keep those joints free and loose and since it is inducing passive movement it doesn’t send off those pain signals!

The seat movement is something that is featured in the “Dreamwave” program, this chair’s signature program and namesake.  Throughout this program the seat will move in a slow figure-8 pattern and then at various times the air cells will inflate to work the lower back and create hip and thigh compression.  Airbags also continue to work the lower leg and foot while the Dreamwave technology is in play.  This is a very relaxing program even for people who do not have chronic low back pain.  If you need something to help you relax at the end of the day, to calm the mind and body, this is definitely the program that you want to use!

Massage Chair Seat Also Used in Inada Sogno Stretch Program

Another function of this rotating seat is felt when the client is using the “Stretch” program.  This is an amazing program on the Inada Sogno massage chair because it not only does a flexion and extension stretch of the spine but it also does a rotational stretch.  What I mean by this is that the seat will shift and tilt to one side and then the air cells inflate to lean you to that side.  After a few moments the seat will shift and tilt to the other side and then the air cells will inflate on the other side of the chair and lean you the other way!  It is truly an effective stretch and one that will leave you feeling loose and flexible!

The air cells are used in this chair in a much more sophisticated way than in most other manufacturer’s chairs.  Typically in the past, massage chair airbags were just used for straight compression but Inada has revolutionized how these air cells are used and, in turn, felt by the client.  If you have the opportunity to sit in an Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair, try the above mentioned programs and see for yourself how far this technology has come!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Video – The Remote Control

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Remote Control

The remote control on a massage chair can be a very, very intimidating thing. For me, the remote control for a Panasonic 30007 or a Sanyo 7700  was quite intimidating when I first had these massage chairs in my showroom. On the other hand, the Inada and Human Touch massage chairs were quite user-friendly for me and I had little trouble getting used to working them.

Today, I am going to show you a video we made discussing the remote control of the Inada Sogno Dreamwave massage chair. For such a sophisticated massage chair the remote is relatively simple and easy to use. It does not take much time to get accustomed to it.

It has the automatic programs visible on the top half of the remote and the manual settings under a cover on the bottom half of the remote. The only confusing things that take a bit of getting used to are:

1. The power lights. When the power button is green or yellow, the chair can be reclined and inclined. The button  must be green to use any of the programs. The yellow light is more of a standby signal. But, when the button is red, nothing works on the chair. I look at it as an emergency position where nothing will function, including the recline and incline functions.

2. You cannot adjust anything on the chair until the initial body scan has been completed by the chair. As soon as you turn on an automatic or manual program you must wait about 45 seconds for the chair to perform it’s sophisticated body scan, which determines what your body needs from the chair. During the scan nothing can be adjusted. You must wait. If you try to push another button, text will appear on the display that says something like “That function is not available.”  It doesn’t mean it is broken…just that it won’t be available until after the scan is completed.

One thing I like about the remote control of the Inada Sogno massage chair is the side pocket into which you can hide the remote when not in use. Some massage chairs have a pedestal remote which has the remote up on a stand that makes it look rather spaceship like, IMHO. The remote is a little more discreet with the Sogno.

Below is the video to which I have alluded. Enjoy…

I hope you learned something from that video. You can check out all of our videos on the Inada Sogno massage chair at our youtube channel, http://www.youtube.com/massagechairrelief

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Panasonic ma70 Massage Chair vs. Inada Sogno Dreamwave

Comparing the Inada Sogno and the Panasonic ma70 Massage Chair

It seems that when the discriminating massage chair shopper contacts me, it is usually a question about the Inada Sogno Dreamwave massage chair, either a question specifically about it or how it compares to some other massage chair model. This is the email I received from a massage chair shopper asking for a comparison between the Sogno and the Panasonic ma70. I make a point by point comparison between these to higher-priced but popular models.

Panasonic MA70 Massage Chair
Panasonic MA70 Massage Chair

Massage Chair Question:

Hi Dr. Weidner

I am interested in a top of the line chair.

Obviously the inada sognio is not a bad pick.

I wondered about the panasonic ma70. You have not written a review on your page.
How does it compare to the inada?
I kind of like the sleeker design, but obviously that is not the main issue with a massage chair.
Thank you for your help.

Kind regards,
Marc 

Massage Chair Answer:

Hi,  Marc

Thanks for your inquiry.
The Inada Sogno has typically been our top seller. However, the Panasonic ma70 is drawing a lot of interest and the clients of mine who own it…love it. The reason I haven’t done a review of it yet is because I don’t have one in my showroom at this point. When I do get one in the showroom, I will be doing written and video reviews of it.
Inada Sogno Massage Chair
Inada Sogno Massage Chair
I have written a brief literature review of the ma70 on my blog. Here is the link to that:

I also had a client buy the Panasonic ma70 massage chair after comparing it to the Inada Sogno. He wrote a brief review about his experience of the new ma70. Here is that review:

Here are the major differences between the two chairs, as I see them:

1. # of Airbags
The Inada Sogno has 100 airbags, while the Panasonic ma70 has 33. Once you see the Inada Sogno, you totally understand why there are more airbags. Between the calf, feet, full arms, seat, thigh, neck, and shoulders you will see more airbags than you have ever seen on any other chair.

2. Neck Traction
The Inada Sogno pioneered the idea of airbags in the neck area with its Cervical Traction Device, which really is a very fancy head piece. Airbags knead your neck muscles and it feels like fingers of a person massaging your neck. It also has the shoulder airbags that inflate and push down on the top of your shoulders (on the trapezia muscles). This is one of my favorite features of this chair. It feels like the elbows of a Licensed Massage Therapist digging into my trap muscles. Great for desk workers, by the way. 

The Panasonic ma70 does not have the cervical traction device, but does have some shoulder airbags that inflate towards the outside of the upper arm/shoulder area (deltoid muscles).

3. Dreamwave Technology
The Inada Sogno also pioneered airbags in the seat that make up what is known as Dreamwave Technology. These airbags move the seat from side to side in a figure-8 motion, as well as up and down. It is very soothing for the low back and pelvis, particularly if you acute low back pain. The ma70 has seat airbags which massage the buttock and thighs, but without the dreamwave motion.

4. Arm Massage
The Panasonic ma70 massage chair has arm rests that lift up and allow the user to slide their arms underneath for an airbag massage. It will massage the fingers, wrists, and forearms. The Inada Sogno has airbags that massage the fingers, wrists, forearms, and upper arms. 

5. Rotating Ottoman
One thing I really like about the ma70 is the rotating ottoman. It is a full foot and calf massager but you can rotate the ottoman when not in use to hide the calf and foot wells. This helps make the chair look more like a regular chair and not so much like a therapeutic massage chair. The user can just rotate the ottoman and lay their legs on the ottoman just like a regular recliner. The Inada Sogno has calf and foot wells in the ottoman but the ottoman is not reversible.

6. Heat
The Inada Sogno massage chair has heat in the form of a little element in a small area at the back of the seat. It is hardly noticeable when in use, but the heat creates the desired effect, which is to increase blood flow to the area. However, on the Panasonic ma70 massage chair, a new innovative heating system is built into the massage rollers. The rollers are actually jade stones that have a heating element built into the jade rollers. This provides a moving heat as the rollers go up and down the spine. It is a very deep heat as well.

7. Length of Roller Track
Because the Inada Sogno uses the airbags of the Cervical Traction Device (head piece), the roller track is shorter (28.4 inches) and extends deeper into the buttock area. You will love how low the rollers go in the buttock. This is a great massage for the Sacro-Iliac area, where many sciatica and buttock pain problems originate. The Panasonic ma70, on the other hand, has a 31 inch roller track, the longest of any chair we carry (along with the Osaki 7000 massage chair). The roller goes from the base of the skull down into the top of the buttocks. A nice long track that hits everything between the head and the buttocks.

8. Manufacturer Warranty
Inada has the best all-around parts and labor in-home warranty in the business. It is 3 years, whereas the head to toe in-home warranty for the Panasonic massage chairs is only 1 year, which is more typical of most other massage chairs in the market.

9. Auto Programs
The Inada Sogno has 8 automatic, pre-set programs, whereas the Panasonic ma70 only has 6. I don’t think that affects therapy too much, but it is fun to have different auto programs. 

10. UPDATE (03/10/12): I just learned that the Panasonic ma70, along with all other Panasonic massage chair models are now manufactured in China, and not in Japan as initially it was. So, this is another difference between the two models. The Inada Sogno is manufactured in Japan, while the Panasonic ma70 is now being made in China.

Some other minor differences include: massage speed adjustment in the Panasonic ma70, junetsu massage in the Panasonic ma70, less power consumption by the Inada Sogno, the Inada Sogno is a heavier chair, greater color selection with the Inada Sogno. 

I hope this helps you in your research, Marc. Please feel free to contact me if you have other questions or if you need assistance placing your order. You probably know this already, but we are offering $700 off on the ma70 for a limited time. You just have to check off the $700 discount box on the product page:

Dr. Alan Weidner

1 Week Left Before Inada Massage Chairs Price Increase

Inada Massage Chair Price Increase Coming!

1 week from today the prices of the Inada massage chairs will go up…substantially! The Sogno Dreamwave massage chair goes up to $7799 and the Yume goes up to $5599. The fellows at Inada made a fun little 30 second video graphically describing the increase.  Enjoy…

If you want to beat the price increase AND get a few extra ways to save money, call me at the showroom at 801-417-8240 and I’ll take care of you.

Massage Chair Comparison Chart Now Available!

By the way, our new chair comparison chart is up and ready to access. You can go to any manufacturer category page on our site and click any massage chair to get a comparison of over 50 features. This should do wonders in helping you choose the right chair for you. Of course, knowing about a massage chair and actually experiencing one are two different things.

This new comparison chart has been in the works for 3 months and is the most comprehensive massage chair comparison chart available. I go over more than 50 features as they relate to the more than 30 models that we carry. I would suggest approaching it in two ways if you are not sure what chair to get:

1. Write down what features you know you want in a massage chair and then go to the chart to see what chairs  meet your criteria, or

2. Take a look at the chart and see what features spark your interest. Then you can get down to which model suits your fancy more than another.

Hope this helps!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Brief Review of New Panasonic MA70 Massage Chair!

Panasonic MA70 Massage Chair
Panasonic MA70 Massage Chair

Panasonic MA70 Massage Chair Review!

I’ve been getting a lot of calls lately about the new Panasonic MA70 massage chair. I have done a couple of  literature reviews of it in the

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past (http://www.massage-chair-relief.com/blog/tag/panasonic-ma70/) but you never really know how a chair feels until you sit in one or, at the very least, read about another person’s experience with the chair.

Well, I finally got some feedback from a recent customer who purchased the MA70. We delivered the chair to him last Saturday and he was kind enough to give me a preliminary review of his experience with it. Below is that review (unedited, in his own words)…

Install went fine. Chair is really cool and spent some time yesterday working it.

Keep u posted on my findings, I think I made the right choice. Already registered the product and extended my warranty by 2 yrs.

It’s a “mans mans” chair. Looks like a recliner which is also awesome (unlike some of the others that are not aesthetic)

Aside from looks, its super strong in the delivery of the massage, which to me is very important and the rollers are “3d” so they move around well to find that right spot on your neck or traps/shoulder area in manual mode to hit just the spot you may need work done on. The rollers may not feel “exactly” like a hand but its pretty darn close to “grasping” the shoulders if you ask me especially for a machine obviously and it definitely loosened me up.

There are basic stretch feature modes as well that it seems the instructions don’t describe well that seem to be auto modes unto themselves that are relaxing and nice.

Ill tell you more later but the biggest differences I can find between this and the inada involve looks, remote, and the rollers hit you like bricks (in a good way). Inada is more soothing and you can fall asleep in it (just like the ads say)

You wont fall asleep in this puppy.

The heating is nice too…it does not get “too” hot so no worries.

Great feedback and information for all of you checking out the new Panasonic MA70 massage chair. It sounds like it is a very vigorous massage which, to many, is ideal. I suppose that if you are looking for a gently pampering this may not be the massage chair for you.

Save $75 On Your Massage Chair Purchase

I hope this assist you in your buying massage chair decision. By the way, if you want to get $75 off the price of this chair, click on this Facebook image Follow Massage-Chair-Relief.com on Facebook which will take you to our Facebook page. When you get there click on the “Like” button. You will then be given a promo code to use on our website shopping cart that will get you an instant $75 off the price of the chair that you want.

Just thought you’d want to know 🙂

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com 

Massage Chairs Christmas Shipping Deadlines!!!

van illustration
van illustration

Christmas Massage Chairs Shipping Deadlines

The holiday season is upon us and it is crunch-time for getting  massage chairs before December 25th. Christmas falls on a Sunday this

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year, so you are wanting to get your chair delivered by Friday, December 23rd. Each manufacturer and shipper has their own shipping deadlines to get you a massage chair by that date. Here is the schedule:

Osaki Massage Chairs:

  • December 16, 2011

Inada, Human Touch, Panasonic, Sanyo, and Omega Massage Chairs:

For standard delivery, plan on…

  • 5-6 days for the east coast
  • 4 days to Chicago to the states that boarder the east coast states
  • 3 days to the Midwest and Idaho.
  • 2-3 days to most western states
  • 2 days to Phoenix and northwest
  • Next day to California and Nevada

(Inada even has a shipping chart with more specific regions and dates. You can check it out here…
http://www.inadausa.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/Holiday-Shipping.pdf )

For White Glove Delivery

  • Inada: 3 business days prior to the dates on the above-mentioned link.
  • Human Touch: December 14, 2011
  • Panasonic, Sanyo, Omega: December 14, 2011
  • Osaki: December 9, 2011

Here are a couple of things you need to also consider regarding the Christmas shipping deadlines:

1. Dates are never guaranteed because of inclement weather. It is snow season and these massage chairs do ship from California and Texas. They may have to go through a state where winter storms are a norm. Just be aware of that. In other words, order as early as possible to make sure you are not pushing your luck!

2. Since we are in Utah, we do the white glove delivery ourselves. That means that it will not take any longer time to get white glove delivery than standard delivery.

3. I have my own shipping guy in Southern California. He can deliver on Saturdays. So, if you order a massage chair during the last week before the 25th, we can most likely get you your chair by the 24th.

4. For confirmed, guaranteed delivery on a particular date, you will have to pay extra!

Well, that should do it. Get your orders in ASAP to avoid any hassle whatsoever with these deadlines and Christmas delivery.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Massage Chair Relief News!

Montage Pro Massage Chair
Montage Pro Massage Chair

Lots Happening in our Massage Chair World!

It is an exciting time of the year for us as massage chair retailers! Black Friday and Cyber Monday kick off the holiday shopping and it starts to get a little crazy for us…and I absolutely love the energy associated with this time of year. I love getting your calls and inquiries about massage chairs. It is so fun interacting with all of you.

I get lots of calls about whether we have Black  Friday promotions going on at Massage Chair Relief. Well, yes we do! Call our showroom at 801-417-8240 and we’ll tell you what we have going on for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Here are some massage chair things you need to know:

1. The Inada i1 is replacing the i2A massage chair. The chairs are basically the same except that the i1 does not have arm vibration nor does it have the wood accent on the sides of the chair. Otherwise, it is the same chair. It is also a little cheaper at $3749.

2. Massage Chair Relief website redesign! Man, I am excited about this. We are completely revamping our website and it should be done this weekend. If you check in and find something lacking or anything that doesn’t work right, please let me know. It will be very easy to shop at www.Massage-Chair-Relief.com with the new design. We’ve been working on it for quite some time.

3. With the new site design, we will be adding a new  line of massage chairs to our repertoire. The Osaki line of massage chairs is a

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chinese-made line of massage chairs put out by the same company that introduced Titan chairs to the market. This line will provide a good line up of full-featured massage chair models in the under-$3000 price range. The models are the Osaki, 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, and 5000. You can’t see them just yet…not until our site redesign is complete (see #2 above).

4. Omega massage chairsare introducing a new offering to the massage chair market. It is the Omega Montage Pro. I don’t know the

Montage Pro Massage Chair
Montage Pro Massage Chair

pricing yet, but I do know that it will be available after December 1. It appears to be, like the Osaki 3000 & 4000 models and OSIM uAstro, a lookalike model of the famous and extremely popular Inada Sogno massage chair. This is a chinese-manufactured chair with some nice features. Based on the other massage chairs already in the Omega Montage series, I suspect this chair will be priced in the $4000 range.

5. Inada has discontinued the Cube chair. A cute chair but it didn’t quite take off as they had hoped. It is still up on our website, as you can still buy inventory, but if you call me at 801-651-2026, I can get you a screaming deal on one! The Cube will not be on our site redesign. Inada massage chairs still include the Sogno, the Yume, and the i1.

Well, that’s about it. Have a fun shopping season. Please call with any and all massage chair questions. I’m always around. I told a customer last night in the showroom that my cell phone is like a body part to me…it goes with me everywhere I go and I use it at all times of the day and night.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Brand Name Vs. No Name Massage Chair – How To Tell The Difference

HT-9500 Massage Chair
HT-9500 Massage Chair

Brand Name vs. No Name Massage Chairs

I get calls all the time from people searching for someone to help with their no name massage chair problems. They bought their chairs for “a song” and now they are paying the price for it. This article will help you see the difference between a no name chair and a brand name model.

When you buy a massage chair, it not unlike when you make other major purchases. You want to know there will be guarantees if something goes wrong. You expect good customer service if you need help figuring out how to operate an item.

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The same goes for your massage chair purchase. You should do some research to find out about the manufacturer before you make a decision. You want a reputable company that serves its customers after the sale. High sales volume generally means the product is of good quality.

With an electronic gadget like a massage chair, things can go wrong. Rollers, airbags, or circuit boards can fail. You want a good warranty, but just because the warranty sounds great, doesn’t mean it is good. One of the best ways to check on a warranty is to ask for customer reviews. Reputable companies do not mind giving these out. They may post reviews on their website.

There are cheap Chinese knock-offs of name brand massage chairs sold for much less than their original counterparts. People get burned because they rush into a purchase without doing much research. It is such a good deal, they can’t pass it by. There is a saying, “Pay me now or pay me later.” This certainly applies to massage chairs.

Here are the pro’s and con’s of buying a name brand vs. a no-name massage chair:

No-Name Brand Massage Chairs

Pros:

1. The products look good.

2. Big savings on a less expensive chair.

3. That’s about it

Cons:

1. High rate of failure.

2. Warranty support lacking.

3. Usually cannot find parts.

4. Inaccessible customer support. Generally you have to email or leave a message and hope to hear back from them.

5. Generally the reseller does not stay in business more than a few months.

6. Outrageous warranty claims. I know of one reseller that boasted a ten year full warranty. No-names are lacking in warranty support.

Brand Name Massage Chairs

Pros:

1. Parts are available. With thousands of chairs having been sold, the brand name companies have parts for your chair.

2. Customer reviews are more available now than ever before with so many chairs being sold. You can find them online.

3. Good customer service includes phone numbers that are generally answered right away and live chat on the company website. They stand ready to help you with any problem.

4. Continual upgrading of their chairs. Name brand companies spend money on research and development.

5. Even after expiration of the warranty, name brand companies can refer you to a technician nearby.

Cons:

1. Cost. You will pay more for a brand name chair with the same features as a knock-off. Many brand name chairs are made in Japan and are generally higher quality than those from China.

2. Well…I realy can’t think of any other cons.

I hope this information convinces you to avoid the cheap, no-name massage chair trap. Maybe you like taking risks and don’t care if you lose money. If you want quality that will give you years of satisfaction, then go with the name brand.

Some good brand names include Inada, Panasonic, Elite, OSIM, Omega, Osaki, Sanyo, and Human Touch. There are other good ones, as well. The internet makes it easy for you to check on many companies and models for the features that interest you.

Do your homework if you decide to purchase from an online retailer. It is good to investigate customer support, even with brand name chairs. Call them before you buy and see how you are treated. Local showrooms will give you the opportunity to sit in the chairs and see how they feel.

Whatever you do, find a source with a solid reputation in the industry. With this information about no-names and brand names you should be able to decide wisely on a good massage chair for your home or office.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada Massage Chair News

Inada Yume Massage Chair
Inada Yume Massage Chair

New Inada Yume Colors…

Inada recently announced the addition of two new colors to the increasingly popular Inada Yume massage chair. It began it’s existence earlier

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this year with black and bright red. It has now added dark brown and creme, both colors that were made popular by the Inada Sogno. If you’d like to read  more on the Inada Yume, check out these blog posts I wrote a while back:

http://www.massage-chair-relief.com/blog/general/review-of-the-new-inada-yume-massage-chair-part-i/

http://www.massage-chair-relief.com/blog/chair-models/review-of-the-new-inada-yume-massage-chair-part-ii/

 

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Back-Ordered!

The Inada Sogno slate color is now completely out of stock and discontinued. It has basically been replaced by the black color, which had heretofore only been available in the genuine black leather.

Also, regarding stock of the Inada Sogno, there pretty much is nothing available until late October. Here is the back order schedule (the only color that is not on back order is the black genuine leather):

Currently on Back Order:

– HCP-10001A (RD) Sogno DreamWave Red – Submit orders immediately to insure shipping by the second week of November.
– HCP-10001A (CH) Sogno DreamWave Chocolate – Submit orders immediately to insure shipping by the week of the 14th of November.
– HCP-10001A (B) Sogno DreamWave Black – Submit orders immediately to insure shipping by the first week of November.
– HCP-10001A (BR) Sogno DreamWave Dark Brown – Submit orders immediately to insure shipping by the week of the 24th of October.
– HCP-10001A (CW) Sogno DreamWave Crème – Submit orders immediately to insure shipping by the week of the 14th of November.

Now, I should remind you that the busy Christmas season is just around the corner. If you are thinking of getting any massage chair, let alone an Inada, you should think about ordering early so that you get the best pickings of the colors and models before back order issues happen again.

We recommend buying a chair by the end of the Black  Friday/Cyber Monday weekend. It gets quite crazy after that.  The Inada Sogno is a very popular model at Christmas-time, so if you are considering that model, order ASAP and take my advice by not waiting until later in the season to get your chair. If you snooze, with the Inada Sogno, you will more often than not lose! Just my two bits worth to save you some hassle later one.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Japanese vs. Chinese Made Massage Chairs

Massage chairs are made either in China or Japan, for the most part. All Inada massage chairs and Sanyo massage chairs are manufactured in Japan. Human Touch and Omega have their chairs manufactured in China. Panasonic has a couple of models made in Japan, with the rest being manufactured in China. Japanese massage chairs are typically more expensive than the less-expensive Chinese counter-part. Pretty much ALL of the cheap online massage chairs are what I like to call “Chinese knock-offs” because they are made in China at a lower price and many of these chairs are created to mimic quality name-brand massage chairs, but feedback we get is that those “knock offs” are of a poor quality.

Inherently, we tend to think that the Japanese chairs are of a better quality workmanship and that the Chinese chairs are of a lesser quality workmanship. I don’t know exact statistics from the massage chair manufacturers for which we carry their chairs, but based on feedback from clients, the Chinese-made chairs tend to have more warranty issues than do the Japanese chairs. Now, I don’t hear from every customer, but I do hear from some and there seems to be a tendency to a higher failure rate amongst Chinese-made chairs. I’d really like to see some legitimate stats from the manufacturers to support or debunk that hypothesis. But, I doubt that they would surrender that information for obvious reasons.

I did a little search on Google for any chatter or information about the comparison of Japanese and Chinese product quality…not just massage chairs. I didn’t find much, but I did happen upon an online political forum discussion that addressed the question. The reason I am putting it here is because the question and the responses are very similar to and indicative of what I hear from customers and shoppers in my industry (the link to this conversation is here: http://www.politicsforum.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=71&t=123607)

Sphinx: I am wondering why there is much difference in quality between Japanese and Chinese products, although as far as I am concerned they have similar IQ statistics.

Potemkin: Japanese products weren’t always of high quality. Back in the 1950s and 60s, ‘Made in Japan’ meant pretty much what ‘Made in China’ means now – shoddy workmanship and poor quality control. It’s what you bought if you couldn’t afford to buy American or British. It has nothing to do with IQ points, and everything to do with infrastructure, training and investment.

Eauz: Part of this reason was that they were just advised to produce goods and services, not perfect upon them. The Japanese given an idea of a commodity, and were advised to just reproduce it or copy it, in the cheapest way, in order to provide cheap consumer goods to society. As the Japanese society grew, they started to design and manufactor their own products similar to those that were originally imported from a foreign country and were highly successful, as we saw that within the span of one decade, Japanese manufactured goods were covering the world, with products that were superior in quality and design. This concept of continuous improvement is found in the word Kaizen (改善).

Although, the Japanese had a more refined culture of analyzing and studying products (master-apprentice approach) to their smallest concept, from 1860’s until 1960, the Japanese, just like the Chinese were required to just copy and reproduce American made products in the cheapest way. It was not until the Japanese manufacturers became strong enough, in the global market, did they dump the foreign junk and start to reproduce more efficient commodities, with higher quality and design. I don’t think China has this concept of kaizen in its society, thus, I doubt it has anything to do with race or intelligence.

Potemkin: I believe the Chinese do have a concept similar to ‘kaizen’ in their culture. An interesting case study might be the recent development this year in Taiwan of a new and genuinely innovative fountain pen at an affordable price, which seeks to improve on the fountain pens available in the same price range in the West, as documented in this thread in The Fountain Pen Forum. The way in which the manufacturers have sought and incorporated feedback from the user base of consumers is exemplary, and bears comparison with the efforts of Japanese manufacturers to improve the quality of their products in the 1960s and 70s. The pen has even won a design award. This is clearly ‘kaizen’ at work, but in China (Taiwan) rather than Japan. Manufacturers in mainland China have also recently shown awareness of the need to improve their quality control and to produce genuinely innovative products.

I hope this post sheds some light on the Japanese vs. Chinese made massage chair issue. We are always asked about the country of manufacture for our massage chairs.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

 

Massage Chair Warranties – Who Covers What?

This is a frequent question for us at www.massage-chair-relief.com, so here is a brief overview of the warranties from the major massage chair manufacturers:

1. Human Touch Massage Chairs

Here is a chart that Human Touch uses on their website that explains the warranties very well for their chairs:

Standard Consumer Product Warranty 2011
In-Home Service Parts Structural
Elite Series 1 year 3 years 5 years
Signature Series 1 year 2 years 3 years
iJoy / Casual Series 90 days 1 year 2 years
Perfect Chair Recliners 1 year 2 years 3 years

The Elite Series includes the HT-9500 and the HT-7450. You can purchase a 5 year extended, in-home service and parts warranty for $369.

The Signature Series includes the HT-3300, HT-5320, HT-5040, and HT-7120. You can purchase a 2 year extended, in-home service and parts warranty for $199 and a 5 year extended, in-home service and parts warranty for $369.

The iJoy/Casual Series includes only the iJoy HT-2580 on our website. You can purchase a 2 year extended, in-home service and partswarranty for only $99.

The Perfect Chairs offer a 2 year extended, in-home service and parts warranty for $159 and $179 for a manual and power chair, respectively. There is also a 5 year extended, in-home service and parts warranty available for $279 and $299 for a manual and power chair, respectively.

You can purchase all of Human Touch’s extended warranties at www.massage-chair-relief.com.

2. Inada Massage Chairs

Inada offers industry best 3 year comprehensive, on-site warranty on all their massage chairs, including the new Yume massage chair. An extended 5 year on-site warranty can purchased for $449. We include that warranty on the Inada Sogno. It should be mentioned that, as with all warranties, there are some logical exceptions to the comprehensive, full warranties, and Inada lists theirs as follows (this applies to most manufacturer warranties as well):

EXCLUSIONS – This Limited Warranty does not include service needed on Equipment as a result of any of the following: (1) Installation, set-up, moving, or relocation from the originally installed location; (2) Cosmetic changes, tears, or failure of fabrics, woods, foam, pads, plastics, upholsteries, exterior coverings, and damages and changes resulting from normal wear and tear; (3) Negligence, misuse, abuse, improper maintenance, electrical disturbances and power surges, acts of nature, or work, attachments, additions, alterations, or modifications by persons other than authorized Administrator service providers. (4) Failure by the Customer to use a high-quality surge protector during the entire Service Period; (5) Improper operating environment; (6) Any problem not involving a defect; (7) Damage or malfunction whatsoever caused by an animal or pet; (8) Damage or malfunction whatsoever caused by liquids of any kind; (9) Rental, business, commercial, institutional or other non-residential use; (10) Unnecessary service calls. If no problem is found upon diagnosis by us or any other third party, you may be charged our standard rate for service calls, shipping costs, and parts; (11) Dropped product or components (including remote controls); and (12) Use of any item with the Equipment if the item is not designated for use with the Equipment. Floor models that have been on display for more than nine (9) months are not covered under any provisions of this Limited Warranty.

3. Panasonic Massage Chairs

Panasonic offers a 1 year parts and labor in-home warranty on all their new chairs. They also have a 3 year limited warranty, which covers the “motor block” and mechanics parts, but not labor. You can get an extended warranty from Panasonic after your purchase and the chair is in your home. A card comes with the chair that offers the extended warranties, but you must purchase them directly from Panasonic. A 1 year extension on the parts and labor in-home warranty costs $199, while a 2 year extension costs $299.

4. Sanyo Massage Chairs

Sanyo explains their massage chair warranty as follows: “SANYO massage chairs are covered under a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty which includes in-home service. The roller mechanism is covered for three years from date of purchase.” The first year, like Panasonic, Human Touch, and Omega, is covered fully and comprehensively for 1 year. The next two years are limited in that the warranty only covers the roller mechanism and that coverage is for parts only…not service. Oddly enough, Sanyo claims that they do not offer any extended warranty at all, which is very interesting.

5. Omega Massage Chairs

Omega’s warranty varies according to the chair model, ala Human Touch. Here is the breakdown:

Aires/M-2 Orion:
6 months parts*
1 year frame

Serenity/Skyline:
90 days in-home service (parts and labor)
2 years parts*
3 years frame

Montage Elite/Premier:
90 days in-home service (parts and labor)
3 years parts*
5 years frame

*motors, solid state controls, electrical or mechanical parts and assemblies or leg rest mechanisms (collectively the “parts”)

So, there you have it…a breakdown of the warranties for the major massage chair manufacturers. Hope this helps!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Japan Disaster Affects Massage Chair Production?

flag of Japan
flag of Japan

We have had a lot of inquiries about the effect of the Japan tsunami on massage chair production, so I figured I’d address that in this blog post. But, first of all, I feel to mourn with those who have suffered so much as a result of this natural disaster. I am absolutely amazed at the grace with which the Japanese people handle this crisis, but so sad over the pain and suffering of this wonderful people. Our family’s thoughts and prayers are with the people of Japan.

The only company that has addressed the effect of the disaster on massage chair production is Inada. Here is a quote from their last correspondence with their retailers, yesterday:

“As of right now the recent earthquake in Japan will not affect shipments in April. However, some components are manufactured in areas of Japan that were affected by the earthquake and, as a result, we may see some delays in May. We will pass along more information as soon as it becomes available. Please submit purchase orders immediately as dates for back orders are continuing to move back.”

The Inada chairs are already back-ordered until mid-April. That back-order status is not because of the Japan situation…it is just inventory control issues. But, May chair inventory will be affected.

I know the Panasonic 30007, which is the only Panasonic model manufactured in Japan, is back-ordered until April 10-15, but the US distributor did not know if that was related to the tsunami or not.

Human Touch and Omega chairs are not affected as far as I know because they ship from China and not Japan.

I hope this helps.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Back-ordered Inada Sogno and HT-9500 Massage Chairs – Part II

Just got notice that Inada is back-ordered on all colors of the Inada Sogno massage chair, except for slate, which will probably be back ordered in the next 7 days. That is really the only chair they carry and they are back-ordered up the ying-yang on it. Delightful! I have noticed a 15% drop in visits for the Inada Sogno on my website since the price increase on March 1st. The phones have been rather silent as well, when ordinarily the phone is always ringing about the Inada Sogno. So, based on that feedback and statistic, I suspect that Inada will have plenty of chairs available once the inventory is replenished. If you haven’t been able to tell, I am a little grumpy  about the whole thing. Not only has the price gone up, but there are no chairs to be had…all in one nugget. Double whammy.

So, again, the red, chocolate, dark brown, and creme Inada Sogno chairs are back-ordered until mid-April. Slate is available for the next 7 days and the black leather is currently not under inventory pressure. PLEASE don’t wait until mid-April to order your Inada Sogno if you want one soon. By that time, the back-order date will probably be May or June. In other words, if you want an Inada Sogno…order it now!

Regarding the new Human Touch HT-9500 massage chair, it will not be in until near the end of March. Because of the popularity of this model, again I would encourage you to order your HT-9500 now so that you can have a chair spoken for when the shipment comes in at the end of the month.

Hope this helps!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Base Colors

Inada Sogno massage chair
Inada Sogno massage chair

I am always grateful to our clients who point out things about our chair and our website that often escape us. One of our clients asked me about the color of the base of the Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair. The pictures that we

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have on our website for the Inada Sogno show different base colors depending on the model. Well, we were asked by our client if it was possible to choose the base color for their new chair prior to ordering it. Well, I contacted Inada because it did appear that different color chairs had different base colors (the base is the bottom part of the chair that sits on the floor and supports the whole chair).

We were told by Inada that the base on ALL the Inada Sogno massage chairs was the light gray color. Well, that answered that! So, we naturally asked for new images from Inada that showed the true base color on all the models. They are working on that presently. We will update the images once they are sent to us by Inada, but in the meantime, just know that the base color on ALL the Inada Sogno massage chairs is the light gray color.

On another Inada side-note: the D-5 and D-6 massage chairs are officially gone. These chairs were discontinued some time ago and now all existing stock has been sold. They are now dead and gone. The i2A massage chair has also been discontinued but there will still be available stock until March or April of 2011. I’ll keep you in the loop of that inventory situation.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Important Inada Massage Chair News!

Some big news out of Inada this week that I thought you should know about:

1. Inada i.2 Massage Chair to be Discontinued on April 1, 2011
A remarkable 10-year run of the world’s best selling massage chair is coming to an end. If any customers have ever expressed an interest in the i.2, there is no time like the present. This product’s official discontinuation date is April 1, 2011.
As is the case with all discontinued product, we will provide parts and product support for a minimum of 5 years from its official discontinuation date.  We will most likely run out of the i2 in Chocolate and Black by year end 2010. Beige should be available through the first quarter of 2011.

2. Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus Massage Chair Price Going Up
It’s official! Due to the devalued US Dollar and the strength of the Japanese Yen, the price of the Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus will increase by $200 to $6999 on March 1, 2011. The MSRP will be $8499, but our price will always be the Minimum Advertised Price, which will be $6999. This price increase will occur on March 1, 2011.

The price of the Genuine Black Leather Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus will not increase. It will remain at $7999.

By the way, all colors are in stock right now for the holiday shopping season. Order soon so that you don’t miss out on the color or model you want.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Christmas Massage Chair Shipping Deadlines!

This is a very important blog post, as it lays out for you the deadlines for ordering a massage chair. If you are considering a massage chair purchase for yourself or a loved one, you need to know these deadlines:

Human Touch Massage Chairs
Shipping to a business the deadline is Dec. 17th
Standard shipping to a residence is Dec. 16th
White Glove Delivery to a residence is Dec.15th

Inada Massage Chairs
California, Arizona
Dec 17 / Ground
Dec 20 / Expedite
Dec 21 / Expedite +
Dec 22 / Expedite ++
Dec 23 / Overnight

Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas
Dec 17 / Ground
Dec 20 / Expedite
Dec 21 / Expedite ++
Dec 22 / Expedite +++
Dec 23 / Overnight

Remainder of continental USA
Dec 17 / Ground
Dec 20 / Expedite ++
Dec 22 / Expedite +++
Dec 23 / Overnight

Panasonic, Sanyo, Omega
Anything that ships on or before Dec 15th should get anywhere in the country by Christmas.
To go back east or into FL it needs to ship by the 15th to be safe.  You might get away with the 16th as well.  Anywhere in the central part of the country needs to ship by the 17th possibly the 20th.  Utah, Colorado, Mtn states needs to ship  by Monday the 17th.  AZ, NV north cal should ship by the 21st, possibly 22nd.

ATTENTION SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA RESIDENTS:

We have our own personal delivery company that does our Southern California deliveries for us, who can deliver as late as Christmas Eve. If you order as late as the 23rd, we could probably accommodate you!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

International Massage Chair Orders

Shipping logo
Shipping logo

There are certain times when we get more overseas buyers inquiring about massage chairs than others, and now is one of those times. We can go for literally months without an international massage chair inquiry and then all of a sudden have 3-4 a week. I have decided, and this is only observation, that when the US dollar is weak and the international dollars are stronger, the US massage chairs are a better bargain for our international customers.
So, given that now is a popular massage chair shopping season for our international clients, I thought I would review our policy for sales outside of the USA.

1. Generally speaking, warranties on chairs sold in the US are not valid overseas.

2. Inada’s warranty will cover chair sales to Canada and Mexico, in addition to USA. Also, if you buy an Inada massage chair that is shipped overseas, the warranty will pay for parts, but not shipping and you will be responsible for the labor on the chair in your country.

3. Panasonic and Sanyo are international companies and have a presence in most countries. You will probably have a better chance of getting warranty coverage overseas for a Panasonic or Sanyo massage chair (even though it may be a “crapshoot”, depending on where you live).

4. We do not offer refunds on international chair sales.

5. The buyer is responsible for shipping costs. We do give some breaks on some chairs, in lieu of the free shipping that we offer on domestic US sales.

6. Generally speaking, free shipping does not apply to Hawaii, Alaska, and Puerto Rico (call us to be sure, depending on the model of chair you get).

7. No online ordering for international orders, unless you are having the chair shipped to a US destination where you will take care of shipping from there to your country.

8. We need your shipping city and zip/postal code in order to get you a shipping quote.

9. We can get you freight quotes for sea and air shipping.

10. Wire transfer is the preferred payment method for international orders. In some rare cases, we will accept a credit card.

11. Bonus gifts and 90 day money back guarantees do not apply to international orders.

12. You will be responsible for customs and duty taxes, if applicable.

13. We use 110 V electrical outlets in North America. Many foreign countries have 220 V outlets. You will need a step-up/step-down transformer in that case. We can provide you with a heavy duty transformer which runs $195.

Well, that should just about do it. Please feel free to call us at our showroom if you live overseas and are interested in a massage chair from Massage Chair Relief. Our number is 1-801-417-8240.  Here is the link to our policy page on our website regarding international orders:

http://www.massage-chair-relief.com/international_orders.html

Looking forward to hear from you!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Video-The Headpiece

Inada calls their headpiece on the Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair a cervical traction device. Maybe a little too technical or medical for most of us, but just a fancy name for a headpiece. But, this headpiece does some pretty interesting stuff which differentiate it from other massage chairs. First of all, it has airbags that massage your neck like fingers and airbags that push down on the shoulders, i.e. the trapezia muscles. This is where the “traction” title comes from…the airbags push down on your shoulders thus tractioning your neck, while it is being massaged by those airbags.

But, if you like the old-fashioned roller massage on the neck, the headpiece can be lifted out of the way and the neck can be then massaged by the underlying rollers. I love the trapezius massage. It is very unique to this model and feels great on tight shoulder muscles. Check it out here on this video we created discussing this feature in more detail…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yigD9kEm2J0

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Sogno Massage Chair For Your Pedicure!

Inada just recently announced the production of a new and modified Sogno massage chair, made specifically for the manicure/pedicure industry. I have had many clients tell us that they sat on a massage chair whilst getting a pedicure and

Inada  Sogno Spa massage chair
Inada Sogno Spa Massage Chair

that it felt fantastic. As a matter of fact, many of our clients were introduced to the concept of  massage chair through their nail technician. Of course, many of the chairs are cheap and not too feature-rich, but Inada has now come out with a model for that industry. It looks just like the typical Sogno massage chair but without the traditional ottoman. In lieu of the ottoman, is the place for the feet and the technician to go. From a marketing perspective, I think it is a great little niche for Inada to zero in on. I’m not exactly sure, but I don’t believe the other major manufacturers cater to that industry at all.

Speaking of catering to industries, I have always thought that the massage chair companies should come out with potentially interlocking massage chairs for home theaters. These two industries are natural fits but not much creativity has gone into this type of chair from the major massage chair manufacturers. Just a thought…

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Follow Up To My Panasonic Experience

I wrote a blog post a couple of weeks ago that talked about my experience with Panasonic after one of my clients experienced some trouble with a damaged Panasonic 30007 massage chair delivery (www.massage-chair-relief.com/blog/general/changes-at-panasonic-thank-goodness-i-hope/ ).  I am happy to announce that Panasonic has stepped up to the plate and offered to pay for delivery of a new chair and pick up of the damaged massage chair.  I don’t know if my blog post or the letters from  my client made any difference, but I am just happy that my client has a chair that is working for them now!

On another Panasonic note…I just heard yesterday that Panasonic is raising the price of their 30007 model by $450. I have been told by inside sources that the reason for the price increase is NOT because of an increase in the cost of production, but because Panasonic does not like it’s retailers/dealers selling the chair for so low. Remember in that same blog post I wrote a week ago what I thought about the lack of integrity in Panasonic’s terrible pricing policies (or lack thereof)? Well, who knew that this would be their answer!!

So, rather than police their retailers to maintain price and product integrity, Panasonic decides to raise it’s price by almost $500 to get retailers to charge more for the massage chair. Oh my…it’s a wonder that so many retailers, including myself,  put up with this for their clients and for themselves.  I have no idea if the price of the their other models will go up as well, but I am sure I will find on Monday morning price increases across the board.

For  now, I will keep my 30007 price at $3999 to see how things work out. But, I will also tell you, for sure, that I will not be doing any low price matches on Monday until the new pricing has filtered through to all the retailers. As it was, I was doing price matches that left me with such a minimal profit margin, that if the credit card that was used by the buyer was an American Express  card (which charges me 3.5% on a purchase) and if shipping was to the furthest corner of the country away from California (which is where the chairs ship from) I came extremely close to losing money on the transaction (in one or two situations, I actually DID lose money).

But I asked for that now, didn’t I, with my 110% low price match guarantee. So, I have to sleep in the same bed I make.

Well, there you have it folks. On Monday morning, the Inada massage chairs AND the Panasonic chairs are all going up in price. “Just another manic Monday…”! It will be so interesting to see how you, the consumer, reacts to all of this. By the way, if you are planning to beat the price woes, you had better give us a call this weekend to place your order. Call 888-259-5380 or call Steffanie, my showroom manager, at 801-680-4229.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Massage Chair Warranties on International Orders

We sell a lot of massage chairs overseas and into Canada and Central/South America. And I often get the same question for each international inquiry: “Is the warranty any good in my country?” I want to address this a bit today. For all massage chair manufacturers the warranty is only good for US orders. Once the massage chair leaves US soil, the warranty is considered void.

Inada is the only exception to this. If someone in Canada buys an Inada massage chair from a US retailer (such as www.massage-chair-relief.com) the warranty is good in the Great White North. But, not anywhere else.

Having said all this, it is important to know the following:

Although the warranties are void, most companies, particularly Sanyo, Panasonic, and Inada, have an international presence. They have resources available for you to get parts and service for your massage chair should you ever need them.  So, if you are an international customer and you purchase a massage chair from us, you can still get support overseas even if the warranty is not applicable.  Feel free to call me if you have any concerns of questions about this subject. We have had a lot of experience in international massage chair sales and can give you a lot of great input.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Changes at Panasonic…Thank Goodness!! (I hope)

I just saw a press release announcing a new head of the Home and  Health Company at Panasonic. This division of Panasonic includes the massage chair division. A fellow named Dan Silver is moving up from the Home Appliances Group to head the Home and Health Company.

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/dan-silver-to-head-panasonic-home–health-company-as-president-82784402.html

You may ask why I say “Thank Goodness” and why I say “I hope!”. Well here are my reasons:

1. Panasonic is notorious for pricing their “new” models high and then letting retailers butcher the pricing to where their is little to no profit margin. Why is this a concern? Let me explain…

When we carry a new model for Panasonic, we are told that we have to charge the Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) or else we can’t carry the model. So, we price it accordingly. For example, when the new Panasonic 30007 massage chair came out we were told that we had to charge $5999 for this massage chair. Obediently, we charged that amount (Panasonic still charges that amount on their website). Well, before long I get calls from folks around the country telling me that they can get the 30007 on another website for $5499…then, a little later, $4999…then, $4499, then $3999, etc. As a matter of fact, now you can get this $5999 massage chair for about $3300 – 3400!! It is laughable. It cheapens the image of the chair, it makes retailers who are obediently charging the MAP look like money-grubbing idiots, and it builds distrust in the mind of the consumer. They wonder, “What is wrong with this chair that it keeps dropping in price?”. I just tell them that Panasonic is terrible at price-integrity and, eventually, they will discontinue such-and-such model, and come out with some new super-duper chair that will be priced high and then butchered again. I have seen this happen already to the Panasonic 30003 and 30004, which were just introduced 2 years ago! They are already discontinued. Unbelievable. It won’t be long before the 30007, the top of the line Panasonic massage chair, is discontinued. Then I will get the same old questions, like “What is wrong with this chair?”, “Will I be able to get parts for this model now that it is discontinued?”, etc.

Needless to say, I have dropped my price and I STILL honor our 110% low price match on even these low priced chairs (I have actually LOST money on some of these price matches!). Inada and Human Touch have had many of their models around for years and their prices remain consistent. Hhhhmmmm…I wonder if there is a correlation between price integrity and longevity of a product in the market.

2. I had a very disturbing experience with a customer of mine, named Lou. Lou is a wonderful client who was great to work with every step of the way. Well, she ordered a Panasonic 30007. It was delivered on time, as promised. When she opened up her box and pulled out her new massage chair (which was a Christmas gift, by the way), she noticed that it was warped when she first sat on it. It didn’t sit level on her floor. The box it was delivered in was in perfect condition…no holes, no dented sides, no sign of abuse by the shippers. When she called Panasonic customer support they told her it was not their problem. She called me about this issue. I called my Panasonic rep. He provided two companies in her state who dealt with Panasonic warranty work. Lou called them both…only one would help her. They came out and, after working on the chair for awhile, determined that it could not be fixed. She would have to call Panasonic back.

So, Lou called Panasonic back and they said that there was nothing they could do about it. After some complaining and pleading, Panasonic agreed to replace her chair but that SHE had to ship it back…at her expense or at my expense!! Neither of us could believe it. Again, I called my Panasonic rep and told him what Panasonic was suggesting. He said he was aware of this situation and, when I said that it was ludicrous that myself or the client should be held responsible for the return shipping, he simply said, and these are his words, “They (Panasonic) just don’t care!” Unbelievable. Here is a chair that my customer ordered from me, that I ordered through Panasonic, and that Panasonic delivered. Yet, with a structural problem that neither of us had anything to do with, Panasonic would not replace their chair with a new one AT THEIR EXPENSE. Every single other massage chair manufacturer who I represent on my website would have changed out that chair in an instant, without a murmur of complaint or resistance. That is why I carry their chairs…because I love their customer service. This incident of customer service by Panasonic was atrocious. I shudder to think how many other innocent customers have gone through a similar experience.By the way, Lou is now thinking about exchanging her Panasonic for an Inada or Human Touch massage chair.

Don’t get me wrong…I love the chairs; I just can’t stand for customer service like this.

I sure “hope” Mr. Dan Silver can make a change for the better for his retailers and his product consumers!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

“Why Aren’t Inada Massage Chairs In Your Special Report?”

Lately, I ‘ve been asked the same question a couple of times about my special massage chair report that you can download on my site. I will include one version of the question below, along with my answer. Hope this answers this question for the rest of you who are wondering…

Question:

Hello,

I would like to ask The Dr. for an explanation as to why Dr. Alan Weidner did not include the Inada Brand in his article Titled:

5 Things You Absolutely Must Know Before You Even Consider Investing In A High-Quality, Robotic Massage Chair ?

What’s the reputation of the brand? Beware of strange sounding or “rare” brands. Yes, it’s possible that a little-known brand has a high-quality product, but with an investment like a massage chair you want to be safe, not sorry. In my experience, I’ve found Human Touch, Panasonic, Sanyo and Omega to offer high-quality chairs backed by great warranties.

I am a potential Buyer of an Inada I2A but I am now concerned and confused after reading this article!

Sincerely,

Tim


Answer:

Hi, Tim
Thank you for your thoughtful inquiry and comment. Actually, we began carrying the Inada massage chairs after I wrote the report. To be totally  honest, I completely forgot to update the report! It truly needs to be updated and we are currently working on a rewrite for the express purpose of adding Inada massage chairs and adding a few more things to think about when purchasing a chair.

Let me tell you a little about Inada:
1. They are the oldest massage chair company in the world. Mr. Inada made the first massage chair back in 1962!

2. Every feature which we all take for granted in massage chairs, i.e. 4 rollers instead of 2, vibration, automatic programs, air bags, etc. , were all pioneered by Inada.

3. Inada massage chairs have been private labeled for years. In other words, they have been making quality massage chairs for so long for other companies. It has only been recently that they have “come out of their shell”, so to speak, and sold chairs under their own label. But, they have been one of the top massage chair manufacturers in the world for decades…a lot of us just didn’t know it!

4. Most massage chairs are manufactured in China…Inada chairs are all made in Japan.

5. The Inada Sogno massage chair, introduced at CES in Las Vegas in February 2008, is the most technologically rich massage chair in the industry and, by far, our top seller. I, as a chiropractor, absolutely love this chair. The cervical traction unit and dreamwave technology are incredible innovations (and therapies) that have taken the massage chair world by storm.

6. Inada just came out with another trend-setting chair last month. It is called the Doctor’s Choice 3A massage chair.You can check it out here: www.inada-3a-massage-chair.com

7. Inada has the best factory warranty in the biz….3 year comprehensive, on-site warranty. They just introduced that last November. And should you ever need warranty work from them, you reach the head technician for the company in North America, Ken Kojima, directly when you call. Top notch customer service.

I hope this answers your inquiry. I appreciate the great question. It just motivates me to make sure that we get the report updated ASAP.

You need to know, also, that the Inada Sogno and i2A massage chairs are going up in price on February 15. The i2A is going up to, I believe, $3999 and the Sogno up to $6799. So, if you are interested in either of these chairs from Inada, act fast!

If you have any further questions or inquiries, please email me back or call me at 801-651-2026. I am always at your disposal.

Dr. Alan Weidner
President
www.massage-chair-relief.com

PART III: Inada Sogno Massage Chair vs. New Sanyo 8700 Massage Chair

Here is the final installment of our comparison between the Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair and the Sanyo 8700 zero gravity massage chair:

Comparison between Sanyo 8700 and the Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus Massage Chairs (Part III)

The remotes are very different.  On the Sanyo 8700 the remote stays on a remote stand pedestal and has a separate hand held sensor that detects stress, your areas of stiffness, and your height, so that it can personalize the massage

Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair

experience to be as unique as you are! The Inada Sogno has a hand held remote that tucks away into a side pocket on the chair when not in use.  It has a one button touch system for the 8-auto programs that you can choose from on the top.  Under the panel on the bottom of the remote you can use the many buttons to personalize your massage experience every time you use your chair! I feel that the Inada Sogno remote is easier to use and a little more intuitive.

The foot ottoman on both of these chairs is extendable.  This is great to accommodate many different users’ body types.  The Sanyo 8700 massage chair foot ottoman extends out only 8” and can comfortably fit users up to 6’4”.  The extension is made possible by a lever at the side of the seat that, when pulled back, allows the user to push the ottoman out another 8″. The Inada Sogno also has a foot ottoman that extends out to accommodate users up to 6’5”, but it is extended simply by the user extending his/her legs. To retract the ottoman of the Sanyo 8700 the user must pull the lever at the side of the seat and the ottoman will “pop” back into neutral position. The Inada ottoman will automatically retract when the user leaves the chair after the session.

The look of the chairs are very different.  The Inada Sogno is more of a rounded chair and when reclined back seems to cradle you like a hammock.  It has a very contemporary design, for which Inada won a design award at the CES show in 2008. The Sanyo 8700 sits more upright and looks more like a traditional massage chair with an attached foot ottoman.  You can recline this chair back into its zero-gravity position to take all the pressure off of your back. Zero gravity simply means that the seat tilts up to 30 degrees to allow decompression of the lower back. Also, the Sanyo 8700 covers approximately 300 square inches of the body with massage mechanisms whereas the Inada Sogno covers over 1200 square inches of the body with massage mechanisms…significant difference.

Sanyo 8700 massage chair

So, after reading this comparison you can see that there really isn’t much in common between these two chairs, they are very different and both very good in their own rights! Best thing to do now is to get out there and try them out and see which one fits your body the best and feels the best to you! Have fun doing your research! According to our experience, the Inada Sogno massage chair outsells the Sanyo 7700/8700 series by quite a bit.

I hope these 3 posts help you in your shopping experience. I hope these posts are part of your research and due diligence. Call us at 888-259-5380 or our showroom at 801-417-8240 if you have any questions.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada Sogno Massage Chair vs. New Sanyo 8700 Massage Chair PART I

Sanyo 8700 zero gravity massage chair
Sanyo 8700 zero gravity massage chair

I just had an inquiry about the difference between the new zero gravity Sanyo 8700 massage chair, which was released last month in the USA market, and the popular Inada Sogno massage chair. It seems everyone wants to compare chairs to

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the Inada Sogno. No problem. Here is Part I of a three part series on the comparison between the two chair models (written by our showroom manager, Steffanie Wistos, LMT):

Comparison between Sanyo 8700 and the Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus Massage Chairs (Part I)

Let’s start from the top and work our way down!

The Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair has an amazing head cradling unit, called a cervical traction unit, that not only kneads and massages the neck muscles but also provides gentle neck traction.  It also has the capability of working the muscles on the top of the shoulders (traps); this is a great way to release tension in these easily abused muscles.  This traction unit is also able to be moved and easily secured at the top of the chair and out of the way, to allow for 2 different ways to use this chair allowing for stronger intensity if so desired.   The Sanyo 8700 incorporates neck massage into the back massage created by the rollers that run the length of the track.   In other words, it does not have a separate unit to specialize in working the neck muscles, like the Sogno.  It does, however, have a neck pillow that allows for some extra support in that area if needed or you can move this pillow out of the way and that will allow for stronger intensity to be felt as well.

The back massage on the Inada Sogno massage chair is going to feel very different than the massage you get while sitting on the Sanyo 8700 massage chair.  The Inada Sogno has 3-D Roller technology.  This is a sophisticated mechanism that works the body from all different planes and not just the X-Y axis.  It feels a lot more realistic…more akin to a massage done by human hands.  The Sanyo has exclusive GK rollers that are wider and have been redesigned and reshaped from the rollers in older Sanyo models. Like most other massage chair models, it only works the X-Y axis of the body.  The track on the Inada Sogno goes very low into the mid-buttocks area and up all the way into the neck. The Sanyo track is also very long and runs from head to hip, but does not go down as low into the buttocks as does the Inada Sogno.

Tomorrow I will post Part II for your enjoyment.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Price Increase Coming For Popular Inada Massage Chairs!

We just learned today from Inada USA that they will be increasing their prices on their famous Sogno Inada massage chair to $6799 from the current price of $6499 on February 15, 2010. The i2A massage chair price will increase from $3299 to $3799 on that same date. This is a big deal to us. We are very eager to see how this affects the amazing response we have seen on the very popular Sogno massage chair since it was introduced to the U.S. market in February 2008. The Inada Sogno has been, by far, our most popular seller and price has been an issue with many of our customers. I am interested to see if the popularity of the chair outweighs price sensitivity in this economy.

I have been so pleasantly surprised to see how massage chair sales have remained strong for us during this economic downturn. Well, this price increase will be an interesting “test” for you, our massage-chair-relief.com visitor. You never know how folks will respond until you test a variable. Price is a very important variable to test…something that most people are sensitive to, in one way or the other. Some people will think the price too high and will bow out of the market for this model. Others will see the price increase as a contributing factor to enhanced exclusivity that this product already enjoys. I will be so interested to see the consumer’s response to this. I will report on  it later next year once I have a good feeling for how it is going.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Massage Chair Christmas Shipping Deadlines!!

With  Christmas fast approaching, I’m sure most of you are wondering when the last day to order a new massage chair is going to be, since you want to procrastinate until the last possible moment (we are kindred spirits!). Here is a list of last minute shipping dates for each of the manufacturers:

Human Touch Massage Chairs:
Monday, December 7: Last day to ship for guaranteed White Glove Delivery by December 23
Monday, December 14: Last day to ship for guaranteed business or residential delivery by December 23
Wednesday, December 23: Last day to ship for 2009

Inada Massage Chairs (White Glove Delivery only):
Monday, December 14: Last day to ship for guaranteed White Glove Delivery by December 23

Sanyo, Inada (non-white glove service), Panasonic, Omega:
Wednesday, December 16: Last day to ship for guaranteed business or residential delivery to East Coast by December 23
Friday, December 18: Last day to ship for guaranteed business or residential delivery to Central/Midwest states by December 23
Monday, December 21: Last day to ship for guaranteed business or residential delivery to West Coast by December 23

Remember, these dates are for GUARANTEED delivery. You can still have a chance to get your chair if you order after these dates. Last year, we had quite a few orders after the deadlines and they still got to their destinations in time for Christmas. So, don’t give up!!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Human Touch Massage Chair Extended Warranty Special

HT 1650 Massage Chair
HT 1650 Massage Chair

Hey, I just found out that Human Touch is offering a full 2 year on-site, comprehensive warranty for their massage chairs until early next year. What they have right now is a 5 year limited warranty, which is basically 1 year on-site parts and labor and 5 year structure/chasis. They are extending the 1 year on-site parts and labor to 2 years. A great offer for the holiday shoppers.

Massage Chair Relief is also offering a comprehensive 5 year warranty on the HT-7450 and HT-1650 massage chairs for the holidays! Aren’t we nice? Well, we know how much an extended warranty means to many of you, so we figured we’d offer that on the Human Touch chairs for this time of the year.

Some other massage chair notes:

1. Inada is offering a standard, factory 3-year warranty on their Sogno, i2A, and Doctor’s Choice massage chairs.
2. We have the Inada Cube massage chair in our showroom now and I sat on it for 1/2 hour last night and I must admit, for such a small and cute chair, it has a great low back and leg air bag massage. I was quite impressed. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much because of it’s deceptively small size, but the quality of the massage truly impressed me. And only $799!!
3. Your company’s FLEX plan pays for massage chairs. Take advantage of that before year’s end.
4. We have the new zero gravity massage chairs from Omega on our site…the Serenity and Skyline models. Pretty cool, eh?
5. Omega is discontinuing the Prestigio 510 model. Manufacturing costs have gotten too high so they are selling existing stock and then it will be no more! So, the bottom line is…if you want an Omega 510 massage chair, you better order now before existing stock is gone.

Have a super day!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Massage Chair Relief Showroom Thanksgiving Hours AND the Inada Cube Chair!

Massage Chair Inada Cube
Massage Chair Inada Cube

The holiday season is upon us at Massage Chair Relief, with Thanksgiving coming around this week. We will be offering a Black Friday/Cyber Monday special to our email list. You can call us toll-free at 888-259-5380 if you don’t get the emails. Our showroom hours will be as follows:

Thursday November 26 – Closed
Friday November 27 – Closed
Saturday November 28 – Open

Last week we added the new and very interesting Inada Cube Massage Chair to our website:
http://www.massage-chair-relief.com/inada_cube_massage_chair.html

It is the dangdest little chair. It folds up into a cube which can be lifted and hauled around almost anywhere. It unfolds out into a full-fledged massage chair, of course not the same caliber of massage chair as the “big boys”, but a massage chair, nonetheless. It is the cutest thing I’ve seen in this industry in a long time. It retails for $799. It only comes in black and white, right now, but may come out in the advertised red color in the next shipment.

Dr. Alan WeidnerInada Cube Massage Chair
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Incredible New Standard Warranty From Inada Massage Chairs!

News is out from Inada that their standard massage chair factory warranty has been changed from the typical 1/3/5 year warranty (1 year comprehensive, 3 years parts, 5 years chasis/structure) to a 3 year comprehensive, head-to-toe, in home warranty on all their current models.

No other massage chair company has ever offered something this comprehensive for their models. You can still get the extended 5 year warranty if you still feel insecure with 3 years comprehensive warranty. I figure you probably don’t need the 5 year warranty with this kind of factory coverage. Most problems, if there are any at all, are usually evident early on.

Now, the comprehensive warranty includes full parts and labor in your home or business. You won’t really have to lift a finger. Many issues can actually be figured out or explained over the phone, but, in the rare case that you need additional help with any problem, you will have a technician come to your home to fix it. And, in the extreme case where the chair needs to be replaced, you don’t have to pack anything or send anything anywhere. Inada will ship a new chair for you, set it up, and then pack up your original chair and ship it back to the warehouse for you. You just watch and then sit.

This is really quite a remarkable offer now from Inada massage chairs. I am very impressed with it. I suspect that this will affect how the other manufacturers will deal with the warranty offers. This is the new gold standard.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

New Massage Chair From Inada

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Inada has created a new massage chair that will be sold principally through the clinics/offices of health care providers, i.e. chiropractors, physical therapists, etc. Inada, of course, is the maker of the Inada Doctor’s Choice 3A massage chairrevolutionary Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair and the near-zero failure i2A massage chair. They are a very innovative company and have come out with very technologically progressive massage chair models.

The new model is called the Doctor’s Choice 3A massage chair. I can tell you that it is a chair that is designed to work on posture correction, as well as pain relief and muscle tightness relief. It will not be sold en masse on line but, as I said, it will be available only through health care providers. We will NOT be carrying it on www.massage-chair-relief.com. However, there is a new blog that has been set up that will provide info about this chair as it comes available.  You can go to www.inada-3A-massage-chair.com now and enroll on the pre-notification list to get updates about the chair as that info becomes available. I have sat on the chair and it is a pretty cool chair, to be honest. As a chiropractor, I must say that the posture correction features are great and very clever.

This chair is scheduled to be released in the first quarter of 2010. It will only be coming in black until demand determines additional colors.  The price point has not been determined yet, as far as I understand.

Check it out…pretty cool chair.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Free 5 Year Warranty For Inada Sogno and i2A Massage Chairs

Massage Chair Relief just added a little something special for our readers interested in the Inada Sogno Dreamwave Plus massage chair and the Inada i2A massage chair…a free 5 year extended warranty. So, now for every purchase of the crazy-popular Sogno Plus massage chair and the near-zero failure rate i2A massage chair, you will get the extra peace of mind that comes with a full head-to-toe warranty.

Currently, both chairs have a standard 1/3/5 year warranty for comprehensive, parts, and structure, respectively. But, the new 5 year extended warranty covers everything from top to bottom should ANYTHING go wrong with this chair for a full 5 years. Not bad, eh.  The price of the chairs remains the same, but Massage Chair Relief will foot the bill for the extended warranty. Remember you also get free shipping for both chairs (and free white glove delivery and setup for the Sogno chair).

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

New Discounted Massage Chair Section At Massage Chair Relief!

As we grow as a company, and as we sell more and more massage chairs, we introduce more and more models into our showroom and we get a few more returns and exchanges.  We have also found that with all the massage chair manufacturer’s that we represent, we see many different models become discontinued. The bottom line is that we have used, discontinued, floor, returned, and exchanged massage chair models for sale from time to time. I usually will notify my clients through an email or on this blog, but now we have added a page to our website that will display exactly what models we have available at very deeply discounted prices.

Here is the link:

http://www.massage-chair-relief.com/closeout.html

My web guy just set up the page and he hasn’t yet taught me how to add products, but we do have some wonderful floor models for sale and very, very good prices. Once he teaches me, I’ll get them up over the next couple of days. Stay tuned and check back periodically if there isn’t something that suits your fancy just yet…things change all the time in this biz and chairs come available all the time.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

P.S. Rumor has it that Inada may come out with a new massage chair later this year or next year. Don’t know much yet, but will keep you posted as I learn about it.

Cliff Levin from Inada USA visits Massage Chair Relief!

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We had the distinct pleasure of having Cliff Levin, President of the Family Inada USA, spend the day with us at Massage Chair Relief. The day started with 18 holes at Mountain View Golf Course, with Cliff beating me by 4 strokes (I could have sworn that I was ahead!! – I will keep score next time). The clouds were out, but we only got drizzled upon once. Otherwise a beautiful day for golfing. If you would like to know what kind of golfer I am, two words – Happy Gillmore!

Then it was off to lunch at Cafe Rio, a wonderful local chain of mexican restaurants. My wife, Mona, met us there and we got to talk even more about massage chairs and Massage Chair Relief with Cliff. The Cliff Levin of Inada and Dr. Weidner of Massage Chair Relieffood was spectacular. Cliff gave us some advice for our business plan and then we discussed the Sogno, the i2A, the recently discontinued D-5 and D-6, and the soon-to-be-discontinued Sogno Standard model. We also touched on future projects at Inada that may come to the USA.

Then Cliff came to our Massage Chair Relief showroom where we got to sit with Steffanie, my office manager and corporate sales manager, and chat for the next 3.5 hours. Cliff went over the Inada Sogno with her in detail while I fell asleep on an Inada prototype chair. We learned that the stretch program is best used with the cervical traction unit lifted up and out of the way, leaving just the rollers of the chair to work the head and neck. Steffanie said it was the best suboccipital lift that she had ever experienced on a massage chair (suboccipital means under the head). You see, there is something to be learned every day.

Cliff left us at 5:30 to head to the airport, but not without a photo as you can see to your right (he’s the tall one). It was wonderful to have Cliff here. He is a very good man with integrity. We have known that from the get-go of our relationship with Inada over a year ago.  But, getting to know him better has been a great experience. We look forward to a strong relationship with Inada Massage Chairs for years to come. Thanks for the visit Cliff. We thoroughly enjoyed (except for that golf score thing!).

Speaking of golf, Massage Chair Relief has been invited back to the Longest Day Golf Tournament in Midway, Utah this weekend (golfers love massage chairs…they help their game). Hope to see you up there.

By the way, one last reminder…this weekend is Father’s Day. If you haven’t got anything yet, get a doggone massage chair today or tomorrow. You won’t have the chair for Sunday but at least you can tell your father, husband, grandfather, son, self that you have one on the way. Now, get on the phone and call me right now to get the order in before the big day. Dads, TVs, and massage chairs just seem to go together really well!

Happy Father’s Day!

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada D-5 and D-6 Massage Chairs To Be Discontinued…Great Pricing Now!

First of all, I must say that Inada NEVER offers price discounts on any of their chairs. Well, that has changed for a very limited time.

Since you have been shopping for a massage chair, you haveprobably heard all about the new Sogno PLUS massage chair by Inada. It has become the biggest selling massage chair because of it’s unique cervical neck traction, Dreamwave seat massage, and contemporary look (among many other things).

www.massage-chair-relief.com/sogno_plus_massage_chair.html

Well, this chair has become so popular that Inada has decided to discontinue it’s previously popular D-5 Robo Chair and
D-6 Robostic models. Their prices have always been $5799 and $6799, respectively. This is where you come in…

Until existing stock is gone and the chairs are completely discontinued, you can get the D-5 Robo Chair for $4299 or the D-6 Robostic massage chair for $4799.

These are absolutely unheard of prices. I’ll do the math for you…that’s $1500 off the price of the D-5 Robo Chair and $2000 off the price of the D-6 Robostic chair. In my opinion, these prices are unbelievable.

But, once the existing stock is gone, so are the prices…these chairs will no longer be available for purchase AT ALL.

Here are links for you to take a look at these models:

www.massage-chair-relief.com/hcp-d5_robo_massage_chair.html
(notice the voice response microphone…amazing feature)

www.massage-chair-relief.com/hcp-d6_robostic_massage_chair.html
(notice the joy stick remote…another amazing feature)

By the way, here are a couple of other things you need to know about:

1. These chairs are manufactured and assembled in Japan (virtually all other massage chairs are made in China).
2. Inada has a reputation of making some of the finest massage chairs in the world.
3. Both these chairs have 5 year warranties.
4. Our Visa Gift Card offer does NOT apply to these sale prices.
5. Both chairs include free shipping, bonus gifts, and free white glove delivery.
6. Your new massage chair will arrive in about 7 days.

Well, I thought you’d appreciate knowing about this deeply discounted pricing since I know you have been shopping for a massage chair. Please take advantage of this while these chairs are in stock.

You can call us anytime if you have any questions. Our toll-free number is 1-888-259-5380. If you are overseas, you can call us at our showroom number at 1-801-417-8240. You can order these chair online (we changed the pricing today) or call us and we’ll handle it for you over the phone.

Have a super day!

Dr. Alan Weidner
President
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Massage Chairs In Our Showroom

It just occurred to me, after talking to a massage chair shopper, that I haven’t given a list of the massage chair models in our showroom. For the rest of America and the world, it probably doesn’t matter, but to Utah residents it just might be important to know. So, without further adieu, here is a list of the models that we carry in our Salt Lake showroom:

1. HT-1650 massage chair

2. HT-7450 massage chair

3. HT-7120 massage chair

4. Inada Sogno PLUS massage chair

5. Inada D5 Robo massage chair

6. Inada i2A massage chair

7. Panasonic 30007 massage lounger

8. Sanyo 5000 massage chair

9. ijoy 130 massage chair

10. HT-125 massage chair

11. HT-5005 massage chair (on the way!)

Please feel free to check them out on the site before coming down to the showroom so you know what to expect and what chairs you might want to take a look at while you are here.

Oh, and by the way, have a super Thanksgiving tomorrow.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Special Orders!

inada sogno massage chair creme color
inada sogno massage chair creme color

I had a phone call a couple of weeks ago about getting the Inada Sogno massage chair in a green color. This customer had Inada Sogno Massage Chairseen a green one in his mother-in-laws home that she had purchased in Taiwan and wanted to know if we could get him the same color. I called the distributor and they said “Sure”, but with a couple of caveats:

1. $1000 extra to make a special order (you see, green is not a standard color in either of the Sogno models), and

2. the buyer has to pay for shipping from Inada in Japan to USA.

So, after learning that the customer decided to get a regular “stock” color.  But, this is good information for those of you that may be pondering a special order. I’m sure it will make some of you think twice!

Also, I just wrote an article about the Inada Sogno massage chair and posted it on the web. Here is a link to the article:

Inada Sogno Massage Chair Article

I rather like this article, if I don’t mind saying so myself! I hope you enjoy it, too. If you are interested in more information on this amazing chair or if you would like to purchase one, feel free to call us at our showroom, 1-801-417-8240, or call us toll-free on our website at 1-888-259-5380. Steffanie or I will gladly take care of you.

Did you know that the Sogno massage chair comes in two boxes?  White Glove Service (WGS) is a must-have when ordering these chairs. We include the WGS whenever a Sogno is ordered through our website. Steffanie and I actually put together our Sogno Dream Wave PLUS on our own when we received it and it did take us quite a bit of time to assemble it. It is not that it is terribly hard, but it is just time-consuming. It definitely is better to take advantage of the WGS when ordering this chair.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

Another Massage Chair Question From A Site Visitor…

I have decided that as I receive massage chair questions from visitors to our site, and if the question is one that I feel would benefit my readership and visitorship, I will post the question and my subsequent answer on this blog. How does that sound? I am sure that many, if not all, of you have similar questions on your minds as you shop for a massage chair.

Here is the question and response…

“Which chair has the best features for the lowest cost?”

Hi, Brian!
Thanks for your email. A great, but loaded question. I would have to say with the temporary low price on the Panasonic 30003 massage chair, that would be the best bang for your buck. If you are quite tall, however, this chair would not be the best for stretching out and also having the foot massage. When one is too tall, over 6’2″, the leg extends beyond the foot massager and the side of the foot and ankle get massaged instead. This chair has 5 auto programs, but no heat or seat massage. It comes in black or brown and is upholstered with man-made leather.

For aesthetics and function, we would also pick the Human Touch HT-7120 massage chair, which has a very nice look, leather upholstery, and has massage intensity adjustment along with calf width adjustment. It also has low back heat. No seat massage, no foot massager. The HT-125/135/136 chairs are a step down from the HT-7120…they do not have massage intensity adjustment, calf width adjustment, or lumbar heat. They are very reasonably priced quality chairs, however, but I would still take the HT-7120 over them for the few extra hundred  bucks.

We just received the Inada i2A massage chair and have been quite impressed with the chair. It feels very comfortable to sit in it and has pre-programmed settings, but we notice that it does not have massage intensity adjustment. Folks that have tried it out thus far, have given it rave reviews. You are looking at a little more money than the HT-7120 at $3299, but a very nice chair. It is also synthetic, man-made leather and does not have heat. It has pre-programmed settings and also has a seat massage.

I hope this helps in some way. Let me know if there is anything else I can assist you with. We are currently working on a chair comparison chart which will address so many comparative issues.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com

The Sogno Massage Chair…Holy Cow, Now This is Cool!

Dr. Weidner here again. I am just so excited about the new model from Family Inada called the Sogno massage chair. I have seen images of this chair and the first thing that struck me is how amazing and contemporary it looks. It will be released to the US public at the end of April or the first part of May. We have already pre-ordered one for our own showroom. Some of the things I like about it include neck traction, along with regular neck traction, a hip air massage on either side of your seat that undulates in a figure 8 to work the side of your hips, and arm massage air bags hidden within the frame of the chair. It is really quite unique. The US distributor says that this massage chair will blow away all other chairs. I can’t wait to see it!!

Family Inada has been making high quality massage chairs since at least the early 1970’s and has progressively developed new chairs that are industry leaders in design and function. They are created in Japan, whereas most other chairs are manufactured in China, and are usually priced at a higher point than most other chairs. The Sogno will have two models, one for $5999 and one for $6499. The higher priced massage chair will be sold through health care providers and has some additional features over the lower priced model. Once we get all the data on the chair, I will post it on this blog. In the meantime, here is a video that describes more of the features of this unique and amazing chair…

We Are Now Inada Massage Chair Dealers!

We are pleased to announce that we have  become dealers for the Inada Massage Chair family! I am quite excited about this. We used to carry the i2A massage chair model, which was distributed by Human Touch a few years back as the RMS-10 chair, for those of you that remember.

These chairs are Japanese-made and are very nice, quality chairs. They are coming out with a new model in May, called the Sogno, and it is one of the “coolest” chairs I have ever seen. I am so excited to try this one out. We have one ordered already for our show room. We also have ordered an i2A for the showroom. We will be carrying 5 models, in all, on the website, including the following:

Inada HCP i1a
Inada HCP i2A
Inada HCP D5A Robo Chair
Inada HCP D6 Robostic
Inada Sogno

We will soon have product pages up on the site for the models we will be carrying. Now, Inada is quite strict about how their chairs are sold. We are not permitted to sell their massage chairs on the website. Although we will have product pages up on the site and the prices will be listed on the site, the actual purchase will get to be made over the phone or in our showroom. The reason we have not been a dealer for  Inada massage chairs before now is because they will only enroll dealers who have a brick-and-mortar store. Now that we have ours, we are on board. And I couldn’t be happier about it.

Feel free to contact me if you’d like to chit chat about any of these models, or any of our other models.

Dr. Alan Weidner
www.massage-chair-relief.com