Transcript of Video Titled "Massage Chair Industry Update - February 2, 2021"
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Alan: Hi, I'm Dr. Alan Weidner from 'Massage-Chair-Relief.com' and today is our biweekly massage chair industry update for Tuesday, February 2nd, 2021. We still are dealing, well, of course, COVID is still raging, even though the vaccines are out, and the country's clamping down a little bit more on mask mandates and whatnot, but it is also still affecting our logistics chair for massage chairs.
[SCREEN TEXT: Port of Long Beach Slowdown of Chair Shipments]
Alan: I have been told that it doesn't take as long now to get the chairs out of the port, but there's still about a week-long delay to get chairs out of the port in Long Beach, and we still have a number of chairs that are back-ordered. I mean, we've got, well, I won't even go in to the different names, but there are chairs on back-order, and we are sensitive to this because we have back-orders from our customers, and we constantly checking to see how close we are to actually having containers get through the port. So, anyway, still a wait, still a week-long delay, one to two weeks, just like it was right at the end of the year. But if your chair is on back-order, trust us when we say the chairs are on their way, and they’ll be here, it just might take a little bit longer than everyone hopes.
[SCREEN TEXT: Auto-Programs - What are They All About?]
Alan: OK, I thought I would also mention that the, OK, so there, when you go on a massage chair, and you look at the programs, the auto-programs, you will see all kinds of different names of programs, preset auto-programs, like you know, vigorous, or gentle, or morning, or night, or sports, you know, recovery, or warm up, cool down. I've even seen programs that say you know, spleen, spleen program, or you know, woman's health, or gentleman program, just these odd programs that people wonder 'Well, what the dickens?' I wanted to get that program that, for the men's program, or the I don't know, maybe there's a prostate program out there for guys, I don't know, but I want you to understand something. These programs are all basically configurations of the same basic modalities of a massage chair, so all the massage chairs do kneading, tapping, rolling, or shiatsu. Some do knocking, or compression, or rubbing, or whatever the modality is, but all the chairs basically take those modalities and couple them with airbags in various and sundry locations on your body, foot rollers, maybe calf rollers, and they take those, and basically, they configure all those modalities in to a program. OK, so for example, a program that is called you know, morning, or energize, or refresh, or wake up, or whatever, probably very similar, a little bit more, faster kneading and tapping, a little bit more vigorous to wake you up. If you see a program called night time, or sleep, or nap, or whatever, that usually indicates a slower massage, less depth, less intensity, less tapping and knocking, more soothing and kneading, and more relaxing so you can go to sleep. And so, the difference, and then also like, something like the spleen, the spleen massage program, well, how does the chair go in and massage your spleen exactly? Well, it doesn’t, it hits the area of your spine where the nerves perhaps feed the spleen, or the viscera of your body, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it's affecting the, you know, it's actually massaging the spleen, or the men's, or the women's, you know, body parts. It's just, you know, in chiropractic, we always connected nerves to, you know, function of the body. So, nerves that go to organs, nerves that go to the autonomic nervous system, you know, you know, wherever the nerves go, the cranial nerves, they all go to certain places and maybe what they're doing is saying, when they create these programs, oh, we're going to focus on the low back area where the nerves go to the, you know, the stomach, to the reproductive organs, to the prostate, to the spleen, gallbladder, etcetera, etcetera. So, when you hear these programs, you know, it's not, you don’t necessarily, you don’t have to think that 'Holy cow, this massage chair massages spleens, well, or it massages men's parts,' or whatever. It just means that the chair is configuring the modalities of the chair, the airbags, the knocking, the tapping, the kneading of the rollers, and the foot rollers, etcetera, etcetera, they are configuring that in a way that addresses maybe that part of the spine, OK, or that part of the body. And so, don’t think that 'Oh my gosh, my neighbor has a chair that has a spleen massage, or a gallbladder massage, and the chair I got, it only says, you know, vigorous, or active, or night time, or whatever,' just know that it's a configuration and all the chairs basically have similar configurations. They just label, they just label the configuration differently. OK, so that is something that has come up a number of times, and I want people to understand that, that I'm breaking it down to the essentials of the massage, and it's, all the chairs do the same thing. They have the rollers and the rollers do different things, and they have airbags that squeeze and move and shift the body in certain places, and those configurations are what we end up getting in our preset, automatic programs. OK, alright, I've probably belabored that enough.
[SCREEN TEXT: Great Tip for the Ogawa Master Drive AI]
Alan: By the way, I had a great suggestion this morning from a customer that bought an Ogawa Master Drive AI, and for those of you that know this chair, it is a very beautiful chair, a beautiful design, it's got a lot of technology, it's got a, you know, a Samsung tablet, so it runs off an app wirelessly, the chair runs off an app wirelessly, it has, you know, the Chair Doctor sensor, it has you know, brushless motors, and whatnot. But one thing that this customer observed, and his name's Robert, and I really appreciated this because one of the problems I have is that the Samsung tablet runs out of gas, right, or gas, runs out of power, and so you have to take it off and go plug it in to the wall, and it comes with an adapter so you can plug it in to the wall and charge it, but how much nicer would it be, and I didn’t even think of this, if you had a power cord that went from the Samsung tablet and plugged in behind your chair. Well, this Robert, he had these little clamps, it looked like little suction cups that attach to the outer frame of the armrest and a power cord that went from the Samsung tablet down behind the, and he used twist ties, or some kind of cable ties, and it stuck close to the pedestal, and then along the edge of the armrest, and then to the back. What a great idea, that way he didn’t, and he commented, and he said 'This way, I don’t have to take off the, or either charge it during, or after a program. It's very frustrating when you run out of power on that Samsung tablet, and we run out of power on one, and so I took it off the chair, I went and plugged it in and left it for the night and came back the next day, and I put it back on the pedestal and turned it on, and it would not pair with the chair, so I had to go through the instructions to figure out how to pair it with the chair. So, a great idea from Robert is to, if you got a power cord that plugs in to the Samsung tablet, and then route it closely, you know, so it's not a wire flipping all over the place, but wire it, strap it in closely to the pedestal, and to the side of the armrest, and then back to the power source, and that’s a great idea. So, thank you to Robert for that idea.
Alan: Oh, the D.Core Cloud is on sale, and it has been on sale for a while, and it continues to be on sale. You know, that is a great chair. I'm a big fan of the D.Core Cirrus because I love the intense massage. D.Core stands for deep core, and that chair does have a deep massage and for people that are really, really tender and sensitive, it may not be the best option for you, but if you like a deep massage, it's fantastic, especially on the shoulders and on the neck, and on the glutes.
[SCREEN TEXT: Price Increase on 3/1/21 for the D.Core Cirrus & OHCO M.8]
Alan: But the D.Core Cloud, you know, the D.Core Cirrus is a $7999 chair, and I might add, that price is going up on March 1st to $8499, as is the OHCO M.8. The OHCO M.8 is going from $9799 to $9999 on March 1st, and so anyway, if you're thinking of getting those chairs, get them now, or before the 1st. But anyway, the D.Core Cloud has the same massage function as the D.Core Cirrus. It doesn’t have the arm rollers, which is kind of unique to the Cirrus, it doesn’t have the calf rollers, it doesn’t have heat, it doesn’t have as many of the wooden panels that the Cirrus has, but the massage is essentially the same, and that chair is on sale for $4999, which is a fantastic price for a 3D L-track Japanese-designed-and-engineered massage chair, a very, very nice chair. Anyway, that's on sale for $4999, and take a look at the D.Core Cloud. If you like the D.Core Cirrus, and you can live without the arm rollers, the calf rollers, and the heat, and the extra wooden panels, and it's real hardwood, by the way, it's US-sourced hardwood, a beautiful-looking chair, beautiful-looking chair, both of them, the Cirrus and the Cloud, but the Cloud has less wood accent.
[SCREEN TEXT: Shipping Costs Going Up, Thanks to COVID - Will Reflect in Some Chair Prices]
Alan: OK, oh, and I told you the last couple of issues that the freight charges are starting to be increased with many of our suppliers. So, you know, I've seen it with Cozzia, Ogawa, JPMedics, and now Human Touch, and I think Furniture for Life has added a little shipping premium as well, because the cost of shipping has become so high, and I guess, oh my goodness, I have numbers quoted to me by one of the principals at Cozzia, how the cost of, I can't remember what he told me exactly, I should’ve taken better notes. But they have to pay, prepay before a container will be available for them to load up, and what used to $4000 for a container to ship, is now $10,000, and so the shipping costs, plus there's an increase in the trucking costs, because there's less truckers available to haul the inventory coming in to the port out to the various and sundry distribution points. So, the bottom line is the costs are going up, so you know, Human Touch just came out with a new schedule for shipping costs. As a matter of fact, well, I'll take a look at it, like the Super Novo, the shipping used to be for a, let's see, let me make sure I've got this, I don’t want to give you, to throw out numbers here, oh yeah, I think it used to be $370 for Super Novo for threshold delivery, or $375, something like that, now it's $475. White-glove delivery used to be $450, now it's $550, so you know, cost of shipping is going up, and of course, it'll be a little bit more based on the weight of the chair, and maybe even the dimensions of the chair, but and just know that the costs are going up, so you may see increases in the prices of the chairs. I know that there are some, or one company in particular told me about their, that their MAP pricing is going to go up a little bit. MAP is the minimum advertised price, they're going to do that to try to preserve the profit margin for the retailers, and at least try, but it's not, the MAP pricing will not go up as much as the cost of the shipping. It seems like the massage chair companies are eating a lot of the increased shipping costs. But anyway, just be aware you might start seeing some fluctuations and changes in the pricing of chairs. This is temporary, from what I've been told by all the companies, is that it's only during this COVID pandemic when the logistics chain is screwed up, and I've talked about this ad nauseum in other videos, and in interviews, and whatnot. So, just be aware that you may see some price increases.
[SCREEN TEXT: Cozzia Brookstone - Infinity Sharper Image]
Alan: Alright, now, interesting, I mentioned this a couple of videos ago, or maybe in both of the last couple of videos about the Cozzia company buying the Brookstone massage chair name, buying the license to it, and so now we're seeing Brookstone chairs again. Brookstone, for those of you that aren’t familiar, is a, was a chain of mall, pretty much mall stores, that had all kinds of interesting electronic gadgets, including massage chairs, and they sold chairs. When I first started this business 16 years ago, they sold like Panasonic, and Human Touch chairs, and then a company called OSIM bought them out, and introduced just their OSIM chairs, took out all the other ones, and just brought their own chairs, but people, and now they’ve basically gone in to bankruptcy, and you'll see their stores at airports and whatnot. We've got one here in the Salt Lake airport, but it's not quite the conglomerate of mall stores that it used to be, but people still look for Brookstone massage chairs, so Cozzia has purchased the rights to that name. And now, ICE, which is the parent company for Infinity massage chairs, they have purchased the licensing rights to Sharper Image massage chairs, which is very similar, because Sharper Image was a network of stores around the country and online, where people could buy electronic gadgetry, including massage chairs and other things. And so, people still look up, on Google, they still look for Sharper Image massage chairs, and so you're going to start to see the Sharper Image chairs. There's two models they’ve come out with called the Revive, no, the Revival, and Relieve. Revival and Relieve, and they're both reasonably-priced chairs. I think the Revival is $2499, or $2999, and the Relieve is $3999, for a 3D L-track with 20 programs, not a bad deal. And of course, the Brookstone chairs, I can't remember all the names of them, but we have the I, or the IX, the Mach IX, on our website, also the numerical model number is the BK750, and there are some other ones that we're just not going to probably carry on our website just yet. But anyway, I just thought I'd let you know that so you got a little background on the Brookstone, the new Brookstone, and the new Sharper Image chairs. The names Brookstone and Sharper Image still strong names in the massage chair industry, or I should say, still strong names in the minds of the consumers, and it's translating to these licensing agreements to provide these chairs with these names.
[SCREEN TEXT: What Really is Zero Gravity? What About Two-Stage & Three-Stage Zero Gravity?]
Alan: Also, another thing I can just, I'll share with you right now, the zero gravity, here, this is a point of confusion for some people, I have defined the term zero gravity in my blog posts, my videos, and my industry updates. Zero gravity, by pretty strict definition, is a 30-degree tilt of the seat, the front of the seat 30 degrees up, and then a 120 to 128-degree articulation between the chair back and the seat, and some people believe that the legs should be up high, or the legs should bent down at 90 degrees. Others believe that the head should be forward, the arms should be, you know, in front, like on top of a chair, and there are different definitions in those respects, as far as the extremities go, but the basic 30-degree and 120 to 128-degree articulation, those are pretty firm. And those are established by NASA, who kind of, didn’t create, but invented, the zero-gravity positioning for the astronauts so that their weight was more evenly distributed when they were traveling weightlessly through space. Well, pretty much all the chairs nowadays have zero gravity. It's kind of a feature that almost every chair has. There are still some of the older, old-school Japanese chairs that don’t have them, like the Inada DreamWave, or the Osaki 4S, or the Panasonics, or the what's the other one, oh, the Synca JP1100. They don’t have, typically have, a zero-gravity feature. You would never know, unless someone explained it to you, and pointed it out to you, what it feels like and what it looks like. But you wouldn’t even know, and most people don’t. But now, and we have seen this, but I'm seeing more of it recently, it's been coming to, it's been brought to light a little bit more recently, but some chairs have a two-stage zero gravity, or a three-stage zero gravity, and again, kind of like 4D, 3D, it's terms that are thrown out there to make people think that they get something special with these extra numbers, whether it's 4D, or, and I've talked about that, my feelings about that. Or, but now about two-stage or three-stage zero gravity, listen, zero gravity is what I just told you, it's a 30-degree tilt to the seat with a 120 to 128-degree articulation between the chair back and the chair seat. That primary zero-gravity position. When a chair says it's got a two-stage zero gravity, it means that the first stage is the true zero gravity, the second stage is a farther recline back, but it's not zero gravity, it's just more reclined. And if it's stage-three zero gravity, it's a third stage going back, and it just means more recline. It does not mean that you have another zero-gravity position that’s even better, or more zero gravity. It doesn’t make sense, it's just numbers thrown out, and people tend to think that 'Oh, I got a chair that’s three-stage zero gravity.' Well, you know what, it just means that you can push an automatic, a button and it'll recline it farther and farther. You can still do that with the chair back button on any chair. So, pretty much every chair has multiple stages of zero gravity, if you're going to define zero gravity that way, but true zero gravity is what I told you. So, don’t be fooled by these numbers, you know, one day we're going to have a five-stage zero gravity, and one day we're going to have a 5G massage chair, and everybody's going to go 'Wow, it's just like the phone networks, 5G, or five-whatever-it-is, but it's not, it's just, just be careful, just there's a lot of marketing stuff out there, and some of it is justified, some of it, not so much, but just buyer beware. And speaking of buyer beware, you can download my report where I talk about some stuff like that, and it's on the website, a free download.
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Alan: Alright, you know what, I think that’s just about it for this week. I've probably talked enough about some of these suggestions and tips and things that you need to know about.
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Alan: But anyway, if you found the video helpful, please feel free to thumbs up 'Like' us on our YouTube channel, and of course, give us a call if you have any questions, you can reach me at 888-259-5380. I'd be happy to answer all the questions you have, or as many as I know, I can answer, and we don’t have the answer, we'll figure it out for you. I think that’s just about it for this week. Feel free to spread this or spread the word about massage chairs by sharing this video with your friends and family. We appreciate that. But I'm Dr. Weidner from 'Massage-Chair-Relief.com,' and I will see you again in two weeks. Bye bye.
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