Shiatsu massage chairs seek to recreate the experience and health benefits of a opens in a new windowtraditional shiatsu massage. Shiatsu is a form of therapeutic massage that uses finger pressure to treat a variety of physical ailments while also enhancing the emotional and mental health of its users. Shiatsu was developed in Japan in the early 1900s as a hybrid of traditional Japanese therapy and Western research and medicine.
Shiatsu vs. Acupressure
Shiatsu is often associated with acupressure, but the practices do differ. Acupressure is similar to Shiatsu in that it uses manual pressure to the body as a way of restoring health. Acupressure, however, is used to treat specific points in the body. Shiatsu is a holistic practice, meaning it considers the entire body during treatment.
Best Shiatsu Massage Techniques
- Pressure: The most basic of techniques, pressure involves firm contact to specific points in the body to relieve tension and pain.
- Kneading: Kneading uses pressure to guide the muscle in upward and circular motions.
- Tapping: These are rapid, short-duration pulses that increase blood flow to soft tissue
- Stretching: Moving a muscle through its full range of motion to restore muscle length and clear lymph flow
A Custom Shiatsu Massage Experience
One of the foundations of Shiatsu massage is addressing the individual needs of each client. Only when the client’s functional energy, known as the Qi (pronounced “chee”), is assessed can a proper massage be applied. An effective Shiatsu massage balances the Qi by accessing and clearing vital points, allowing the Qi to flow freely. If the Qi is unbalanced or blocked, physical symptoms often follow, including frequent illness, headaches, or digestive issues, for example.
The top 5 best Shiatsu massage chairs feature a variety of settings to better align with the needs of its user. The chairs that reflect a deep knowledge and experience with Shiatsu massage give their users the greatest health benefits, including reducing stress and preventing physical ailments. According to these standards, we’ve found the five best Shiatsu massage chairs in the industry.
- OHCO M.8 – Best Shiatsu Massage Chair
OHCO’s M.8, built-in Japan, makes the list of best Shiatsu massage chairs for its intricate engineering. OHCO’s impressive roster of massage chairs is backed by the personal touch of sensei Akira Okabayashi, a Shiatsu master who worked closely with OHCO engineers to deliver one of the most lifelike massage experiences in the industry. The M.8 massage chair uses foundational Shiatsu techniques, including tapping, kneading, and rolling, but it’s the algorithms of its proprietary technology that take you to the next level. Sens8, as the technology is known, allows users to vary speeds and patterns in order to give an individualized experience that’s central to the philosophy
- OHCO R.6 – Best Shiatsu Massage Chair
Another of OHCO’s impressive massage chairs, the R.6 shares many of the M.8’s features, including Sens8 technology and input from Shiatsu master Akira Okabayashi. But the R.6 truly hangs its hat on its aesthetics. The OHCO R.6 features premium woodgrain trim to complement any opens in a new windowmodern living space or office decor. Its beauty doesn’t diminish its performance, however, as the R.6 delivers basic Shiatsu techniques as well as a scanning feature that assesses your body structure and applies the massage most appropriate to your specific build.
- Panasonic MAJ7 – Best Shiatsu Massage Chair
Panasonic is one of the most trusted brands in the world, and its made-in-Japan MAJ7 massage chair bolsters that strong reputation. The MAJ7 is the most advanced of Panasonic chairs, using a 3D massage mechanism, body scan technology, and infrared heating rollers to apply a variety of massage techniques. That includes a preset and manual Shiatsu program designed to penetrate and revitalize damaged muscles. In addition to its high-powered massage capabilities, the design of the MAJ7 projects luxury and refinement, making it a tasteful addition to your home or office furniture collection.
- D.Core Cirrus – Best Shiatsu Massage Chair
The D.Core Cirrus goes beyond the basics, as it is specifically designed to recreate the Shiatsu experience. That focus goes down to the smallest details with the D.Core’s patented True Shiatsu Action Mechanism — oscillating rollers that mimic the organic movements of a massage therapist. With a long list of features, including a heated back massage, zero-gravity position, and mechanical massage units for your arms and calves, the Cirrus offers a full-body experience that leaves you with a clear head and relaxed body. Its black walnut trim adds a nice aesthetic touch and is a tribute to its Japanese origins.
- D.Core Stratus – Best Shiatsu Massage Chair
D.Core delivers again, this time with the Stratus massage chair. The Stratus also features D.Core’s patented True Shiatsu Action, made possible by its L-Track, which aligns Shiatsu massage mechanics with your body type. The Stratus prides itself on functional superiority with its full body air massage feature in addition to its unmatched aesthetic appeal. We can envision the Stratus fitting seamlessly in a variety of environments, including your private home or public office. D.Core’s commitment to a true Shiatsu experience is reflected in all of their chairs, but especially the Stratus.
Choosing the right Shiatsu massage chair can be overwhelming. The long lists of features and technical jargon can put consumers like you at a disadvantage. But knowledge of Shiatsu massage and the massage chair industry can help you cut through the noise. If you’re looking for an authentic Shiatsu massage experience, any of the five massage chairs listed will start your path to good health and emotional well-being.