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The massage chair recliner is a wonderful device for those of you seeking relief from any type of muscle pain. It can be used successfully in place of the usual professional therapies. Headaches, neck and back pain, hip, buttock and leg pain, and even stress, all respond well to a good massage chair.

Most folks interested in a massage chair suffer from one or more of these conditions. Since massage chairs offer such dramatic improvement for any of these symptoms, I find that many of my patients after buying their own chairs require fewer and fewer visits to our clinic. These common, often stress related conditions respond well to regular use of a good chair. You may not have severe symptoms and may simply want a good-looking massage chair for your office or home. It provides needed relaxation while you listen to music or watch a movie. By regular use in this manner, you will prevent your muscles from getting too tense over time and avoid future problems. Before buying your own massage chair recliner, you should investigate to be certain this is a good decision for you. Simply trying out a chair to see how it feels is not necessarily the way to determine which model is best for you. Since there is a lot of information to share with you, this article will cover the first 2 areas you should think about. The other 8 items will be discussed in Part II of this same topic. So, lets get started. #1.

#1. Durability - Of course, you want a massage chair that will last for many years. There are several ways to find out the reliability of a given model.

#2. Warranty - Always read the manufacturer's information regarding the massage chair you are considering. Included should be a good warranty. A longer warranty by a reputable company can give you assurance in your decision making process. Also, check for loopholes in the warranty guarantee to be certain it is truly a good warranty. Reputation - Do a little research online or at the library to find out about the manufacturer of the massage chair. Find out how long the company has been in business. At first glance, does the customer service appear to be good? Satisfied customers are probably the best source of this information and we will go into that in more detail in Part II. At the very least, there should be a toll free phone number you can call if you have problems. Endorsements from the healthcare professionals are other good signs. New vs. Used - You may be tempted to check out a used chair, since there are many out there. Unfortunately, it is a little like buying a used car. How can you be sure you are getting a good deal? The chair may look good on the outside, but may have had hard times with with such abuse as children or pets jumping on it. Of course, you will not have a warranty with a used chair. #2. Features - You may be familiar with the old massage chairs that did nothing more than vibrate. The modern chairs include many more features to help you relax. As you do your research, you should find the following: Full recliner - Be sure to select a chair that reclines at least 170 degrees. There are chairs that only recline 135 degrees. This feature assures that your massage will be deep. Your body weight against the chair intensifies your massage. The resulting deep massage you enjoy is not possible in less expensive models. Kneading - "Shiatsu" is another name for kneading which mimics hand movements a licensed massage therapist uses in a traditional massage. Percussion/Tapping - This tapping feature on your back is like the light "karate chopping" you may have experienced in traditional massage. Muscles loosen, your blood flows more freely, and you feel great. Rolling - We have a "roller table" in the clinic that cost $2800.00. Patients recline on it and it feels wonderful as the wheels roll up and down each side of your spine. It gently stretches the spine and muscles and actually moves the spinal bones as well. This is a feature you want in your massage chair. It will save you a lot of money! Foot and calf massager - Look for an ottoman that attaches to your chair. Found on the newer chairs, this feature uses an airbag system to relax your foot and calf muscles. Anyone who is on their feet all day will want this feature. In Part II, we will discuss items #3-10.

In Part II, we will discuss items #3-10.