Are Massage Chairs Bad for You? Let’s Have A Look?

Do you ever feel achy after sitting in your massage chair? You are not alone.

Despite being designed to help us relax, there are potential risks associated with using massage chairs that could leave us feeling worse instead of better.

In this article, we will look at the possible side effects and how to use them safely and comfortably.

Are Massage Chairs Bad for You?

While massage chairs can provide therapeutic benefits, improper use or overuse may cause some issues. There are both positive and negative effects associated with massage chairs, and be aware of all the potential risks before using one.

For example, using a massage chair with improper form or incorrect settings could strain your back and neck muscles. 

One study found that using a massage chair for more than 20 minutes can cause fatigue and even sleepiness in some people. 

The main disadvantages of using a massage chair include: 

  • The risk of injury
  • Strain on muscles
  • Skin irritation
  • Blood clotting
  • Overstimulation of nerve endings
  • Other medical conditions

Side Effects of Using a Massage Chair

Despite the numerous benefits of massage chairs, you need to consider some potential drawbacks before investing in one.

Are Massage Chairs Bad for You?

Let’s have a look at some of the potential drawbacks:

1. Overuse Can Lead to Injury

The risk associated with massage chairs is overuse. 

Just like any other form of exercise or activity, when used too often and for too long, massage chairs can put a strain on our bodies and result in injury. 

This can range from mild soreness to more serious conditions like back pain or even herniated discs.

2. Poor Posture While Using

Poor posture while using the massage chair is another potential risk, which can lead to stiffness and strain on your muscles and cause pain in the long run.

Remember to sit up straight and avoid slouching while using the chair.

3. Risk of Skin Irritation

There is also a risk of skin irritation from using massage chairs. This is more common if you have sensitive skin, but it can happen to anyone.

The combination of heat, vibration, and pressure from the chair can irritate and inflame the skin, leading to discomfort and even pain.

4. Blood Clotting

Extended use of the chair could lead to the development of blood clots, which is another risk.

This can be dangerous if not addressed quickly as it can lead to serious medical conditions such as deep vein thrombosis.

5. Overstimulation of Nerve Endings

Massage chairs can cause overstimulation of the nerve endings in the body. This can lead to negative reactions such as nausea, dizziness, and headaches.

Using Massage Chairs Safely & Comfortably

Now that we have discussed some of the negative effects of massage chairs. Let’s look at how we can use them safely and comfortably.

1. Start Slow and Listen to Your Body

To start, take it slow and pay attention to how your body feels while using the chair. If you feel any discomfort or pain, stop immediately and take a break.

2. Set the Intensity Level

The next step is to adjust the intensity of the massage chair to a level that feels comfortable for you. 

Ensure that the massage chair is not too strong and does not cause any pain or discomfort.

3. Do Not Overuse

It is important not to overuse the massage chair. Stick to recommended usage times and take regular breaks in between sessions. This will help prevent any potential injuries or discomfort.

Massage chairs provide a fantastic way to relax the body. But they can also have potential side effects.

To avoid any potential issues, remember you use massage chairs in moderation and for no more than 15-20 minutes at a time.


1. Who Should Use a Massage Chair?

A massage chair can be an excellent tool for relaxation and stress relief if you use it safely and responsibly.

However, if you have any existing medical conditions or injuries, it’s best to consult your doctor before using one.

2. Is it Bad to Use a Massage Chair Every Day?

Using a massage chair every day is not necessarily bad, but it’s essential to listen to your body and take breaks when necessary.

If you feel any discomfort or pain, stop immediately, and take a break.

3. Is it Safe to Use a Massage Chair during Pregnancy?

No, it is not recommended for pregnant women to use massage chairs due to potential risks. It’s best to consult your doctor before using any massage equipment while pregnant.

4. Is there an Optimum Usage Time for a Massage Chair?

You use the massage chair in short spurts, no more than 15 minutes at a time, and take regular breaks in between sessions.

Prolonged use can worsen existing conditions or even cause new ones. Listen to your body and adjust accordingly for optimum results.


In conclusion, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks associated with massage chairs and use them safely and comfortably. 

Taking regular breaks and paying attention to your body can help reduce the risk of overexertion. 

If you find that the risks outweigh the benefits, there are plenty of other ways to relax and reduce stress. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what works best for you so you can reap all the benefits from your massage chair without any of the associated risks.

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About the author

I am Dr. Arjun Patel. Sharing my 20+ years of experience in Massage & Physical Therapy. I am an active member of the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA). To learn more about me and our team, visit the about us page. Click here to contact me for questions, concerns, and consultation






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