Three things tend to happen when you professionally sit in an office chair for 40 hours per week.
- Your neck feels like a giant weight has been hanging from it all day.
- Your back feels like someone tried to twist it into a pretzel.
- Your butt feels like thumbtacks are being regularly inserted into each muscle.
Even with proper posture, the fatigue that comes from sitting all day can wear you out. Without proper posture, there is a good chance that you are overusing your muscles. Over time, improper posture can even straighten out your spine, leading to long-term health issues and a higher risk for chronic pain.
That’s why one of the best massage chair pads that works with your office chair is a good investment to make.
Which Pads Are the Best?
Massage chair pads are designed to work with most chairs. They can be installed in your car, at your home office, or even in your recliner. You can even purchase recliners that offer this type of product. Here are the top-rated options that are available right now so you can begin to feel better right away.
|Picture||Name||Our Rating||Points of Massage||Price|
|Picture||Name||Our Rating||Points of Massage||Price|
|Gideon Seat Cushion Vibrating Massager||4.2||10||$|
|Best Message Long Rail Shiatsu Massage Chair||4.0||8||$$$$$+|
|Real Relax Full Body Massage Chair Recliner with Cushion||4.4||8||$$$$$+|
|Homedics MCS-510H Total Back & Shoulder Massage Cushion||4.0||4||$$|
|Zyllion Shiatsu Neck and Back Massager Cushion||4.0||8||$$$$|
|Gideon Vibrating Seat Cushion||4.1||8||$|
|Snailax Vibrating Seat Massage Cushion||4.8||5||$|
|Gideon Customizable Back & Neck Massaging Cushion||4.6||8||$$$$|
|Naipo Back and Full Body Massage Seat Cushion||4.8||10||$$$$$+|
|Homedics QRM-400H Therapist Select Shiatsu Seat Cushion||4.0||4||$$$|
A Glossary of Terms for Massage Chair Pads
As you read the best massage chair pad reviews and look at what features a massage chair offers, you’ll find several terms are used repetitively. It can help to know what those terms mean. This brief glossary will help to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Acupressue: This is a massage technique which targets specific points on the body to generate specific results.
Airbag Compression: This feature stabilizes the body part being massaged and simulates the techniques that a Swedish massage would provide.
Clapping: This massage technique provides a sharp burst of pressure from one of the massage points, creating alternating levels of pressure on the body when multiple points fire at different times.
Deep Tissue: This massage technique is designed to work the muscles, tendons, and ligaments instead of only targeting muscle tissues. It focuses on a single, targeted area. If the whole body is targeted, it is referred to as “deep pressure” instead.
Kneading: This massage technique uses the fingers and thumb to squeeze the muscles while providing a mid-level massage. It elongates the muscle tissue, stretching it out to provide relief.
Meridian: This is a reference to the muscle balance that a massage is intended to provide. You achieve a meridian when you are no longer feeling stressed or overwhelmed and have the energy to complete a new task.
Motors: This term is an alternative word that is used for the pressure points a massage chair pad or chair may provide. These points may provide tapping, kneading, rolling, and other types of massage functionality.
Vibration: This feature creates a shaking movement within the massage chair pad so that muscle penetration can be achieved. Each shake is like a small touch that encourages the muscle to begin relaxing.
Features to Expect with the Best Massage Chair Pads
Virtually all massage chair pads offer two features: heat and vibration. The goal of these features to reduce the amount of muscle tension which occurs from long-term sitting. Entry-level models will focus on the back, while mid-range units in this category will work along the buttocks and thighs.
If you work at a computer all day and experience neck pain, look for a model that extends the chair pad up to your problem area and provides at least two massage points there.
Several models will provide a roller stroke as part of the massage experience. You’ll want to take a length at the specifications of each stroke to ensure that your needs can be met. Longer roller strokes indicate a larger area of the back and neck will receive contact with the massager.
Shorter roller strokes won’t usually reach the neck and are designed more for specific problem areas in the upper or lower back.
For best results, look for a massage stroke that is a minimum of 30 inches. This will allow the massage chair pad to reach your neck and your lower back while you continue to sit with proper posture.
Another feature to think about with the best massage chairs is an automated program. Massages work best when they operate within a cycle. This combines multiple massage techniques and target areas to offer quick relaxation. Some models will allow you to design and store your favorite programs so the muscles that are consistently sore can experience relief.
A premium feature that is nice to have will automatically map your body to determine where your primary areas of tension happen to be. After completing the scan, you’ll receive a targeted massage that can quickly relieve the muscle pain being experienced, adding more time to each recognized area of concern so that it can be resolved.
What If I Want to Recline for My Massage?
Most massage chair pads will work with whatever chair you prefer. Many are designed to work in an office chair, but you can install them on a regular recliner to receive a reclining massage. Some models do not have the flexibility in the pad to accommodate this movement, however, which is why the best massage chair pad reviews can be a real asset.
Other models feature varying degrees of recline that can be accommodated. Some can recline up to 175 degrees, which takes the pressure off the neck and spine for a very therapeutic massage at home. Some models have multiple recline settings that work with varying levels of massage strength for a customized experience.
If you’re on a budget, however, many entry-level massage chair pads will struggle to provide a meaningful feature in this specific area.
How to Find the Right Massage Chair Pad for Me
Most massage chair pads are designed for general use. It’s like purchasing a one-size-fits-all clothing product. If you fit into the “most” category, then you’ll be able to use the massage tool very effectively.
Determining if you fit into that category can sometimes be a little tricky. Not every body type or body size will accommodate the general design functions of the average massage chair pad. If you fit into one of these categories, you’ll want to read the best massage chair pad reviews to determine if the tool you prefer will actually meet your needs.
- You are over 6 feet tall.
- You are under 5’2” in height.
- You weigh more than 250 pounds.
- You weigh less than 100 pounds.
If you’re right on the edge of one of these categories, one way to provide more certainty to your purchasing decision is to consider the type of clothes you purchase. People who purchase Big & Tall clothing, Petite clothing, or wear skinny jeans and fitted shirts and still have room to move inside them may need to purchase a customized massage chair pad instead of a generalized one.
Once you do find a massage chair pad that works for you, the material of the product must be the next consideration. Most chair pads are made from a mesh material, though some are made with leather or a faux leather.
If you’re purchasing a massage chair, almost all are made from natural or synthetic leather.
In terms of longevity, you can’t go wrong with a leather massage chair pad. They require more ongoing care to keep them working well, but they work better with most chair and furniture types. Synthetic leather can handle the heat from certain massagers, but can be sticky if sweat occurs during the massage.
For affordability and low maintenance, mesh massage chair pads do provide a tremendous value. They just aren’t a good long-term investment. You’ll get about 5 good years out of a leather massage product, but 1-2 years out of a mesh massage product in this category.
How Much Should I Budget for the Best Massage Chair Pads?
Massage chair pads are one of the most affordable relaxation tools that you can purchase today. Even entry-level models offer vibration and heat and at least 4 points of massage contact Several options are available for less than $40 and most entry-level massage chair pads cost less than $50.
At the mid-range price point, you’ll find most massage chair pads have 8 points of contact instead of 4. You’ll find some natural and synthetic leather options at this price level as well, along with specific sizing for those who struggle to use one-size-fits-all products. Expect to pay at least $100 for a massage chair pad here, with some models reaching $200.
Above $200, you’ll find leather massage chair pads that are rich in features, including different types of massage.
Once you get above $300, your better investment is a full massage chair. Pricing for massage chairs can go above $5,000 for a medical-quality product, but most homes can benefit from a chair that is priced in the $400-$800 range.
Choose the Best Massage Chair Pad for Personal Use
The materials of the Homedics Massage Cushion are a soft polyester, with a bit of a mesh backing, so the product is reasonably easy to clean. There’s some breathing space for your back as well, but their cushion does tend to stick to you if you happen to be sweating. You get to control the heat function and the width of the massage can also be controlled. The programmable remote control is pretty easy to use, though the buttons are somewhat small to the touch. If you wish to change the intensity of the massage, you can remove the cover on the cushion to give yourself a deeper massage experience.
In total, there are more than 50 different air bags that are used on this recliner, giving your entire body the chance to experience a reduction in tension. This is combined with 8 massage points that are installed in the backrest of the chair. Each feature and component is tied into the automated massage programs, providing a highly effective massage. There is also a built-in heater with this recliner that generates warmth around the waist. The goal is to encourage blood circulation. It can make you feel a bit sweaty if you use the feature long enough.
The chair as a unit is very solid. It’s composed of a well-made thick plastic shell and offers modern ergonomics that add to any interior design. There is a Bluetooth speaker element to this chair design as well, making it feel almost like a gaming chair in some respects. You can stream music to the chair to create your own spa-like effect. The manufacturer calls it “3D surround sound.” It’s more like a decent automobile speaker system for all practical purposes. The weight of the chair is nearly 70 pounds, so keep that in mind for delivery. The size of the chair and its shape makes it a little awkward trying to navigate some tight walkways.
In addition to the 10 vibration points on this massage chair pad, there are 4 massage nodes that can be used at 4 different levels of intensity. When combined with the vibration, the massager provides a very effective way to relieve tension, stress, and pain that develops during times of prolonged sitting. The design is mostly effective, though the power cords do provide some limitations. You must be within 6 feet of an outlet to use this product effectively and the remote control is corded to the massager as well.
This is an excellent massage chair pad for those who are tired of products that don’t even attempt to massage the neck. You’ve got three zones of comfort from which to choose. Four nodes work the neck, another 4 work the back, and then two vibration centers are located in the seat to provide additional comfort. You can have the nodes perform a Shiatsu massage or a rolling massage for a soothing, relaxing sensation. It works in most chairs, fits most body types, and is one of the best options available in this category.
Sometimes the best type of massage is based on healthy kneading actions provided by automatic nodes. Then there are the times when simple heat and vibration can make all the difference in the world. This seat cushion is designed to provide proactive results for those who have made a career sitting in front of a computer. There’s enough padding to make the cushion comfortable and 8 vibration points spread comfort throughout the body. You can use this massage chair pad as a basic heating cushion as well if you prefer.
This basic massage chair pad gets the basics of heat and vibration right. It isn’t designed to be an all-in-one type of massager, but what it can do is provide three vertical points and two seat-based points of vibration. A heating mechanism provides comfort along the back. In total, you’ll receive 4 selective massage zones, 5 different modes, and three different levels of intensity to create a customized experience. It is also one of the few products in this category that is truly suitable for in-vehicle use.
If you prefer a fully customized back massage option with a chair pad, then this product is your best choice in the category. You have full control over the zones, nodes, and certain movements the chair offers. All the nodes offer reversible rotation for the massage, while the massage nodes along the back move vertically at the same time to provide rolling comfort. Your upper and lower back will feel better, especially with the adjustable spot focusing that is available.
This massage chair pad centralizes all the benefits you receive from 8 contact notes. One set moves clockwise, while the other set moves counter-clockwise, which provides a very helpful kneading action. Muscle knots don’t stand a chance when you give this chair pad about 20 minutes of your time. There is gentle squeezing that can feel like a pinch at times, especially if the back is fully pressed into the product. For the most part, however, the 13 air chambers work with the massage nodes and vibration to help make any back feel better.
For those who are looking for massage options with their chair pad, this model from Homedics offers exactly what is wanted. You have access to advanced microprocessor controls which allow for 6 different programs to be incorporated. Hand controls make it easy to set the program so you can focus more on leaning back and relaxing. You customize the command track, adjusting the width of the massage to fit your body. Although the number of advanced features is somewhat limited, the massage customization can’t be overlooked.
The best massage chair pad reviews will help you find a way to stay relaxed and comfortable all-day long. Stop suffering just because you sit at a computer all day or have a long commute. Grab one of these massagers and begin living the good life.