Massage Techniques


Swedish massage therapy is the most common type of massage. It involves soft, long, kneading strokes, as well as light, rhythmic, tapping strokes. This type of massage can be both relaxing and energizing by relieving muscle tension, increasing the level of oxygen in the blood, and decreasing the amount of toxins in the muscles. The massage rollers located in the backrest of a massage chair mimic the motions of a Swedish massage, which include sliding, kneading, tapping, friction, and vibration.


Deep tissue massage focuses on certain painful and stiff spots in your body. It involves slow, deliberate strokes that focus pressure on layers of muscles, tendons, or other tissues deep under your skin. This type of massage can be therapeutic by helping with muscle pains and relieving chronic patterns of tension.


Shiatsu massage is a Japanese massage technique, and the word shiatsu means “finger pressure”. Similar to a Western massage, the technique combines touch, tapping, rolling, kneading, stretching, mobilization, and acupressure to promote relaxation but also to encourage healing. While often referred to as massage, the Japanese use shiatsu as a form of energy work to release energy (or Qi/chi) blockages and balance energy flow within the body. They believe that blockages in the Qi (chi) energy are what cause pain, and releasing them helps the body to heal itself. As a form of massage, it can help with releasing muscle tension, reducing stress, and promoting relaxation. But as shiatsu works with the whole body, it can also help relieve headaches, relieve painful symptoms of chronic conditions such as arthritis, improve circulation, aid with digestive and skin disorders, menstrual difficulties, depression, and even emotional issues.


Tapping massage, also known as percussion massage, involves a series of rapid, rhythmic, tapping strokes that energize the body and stimulating the spine. This type of massage can tone and strengthen the muscles, and is associated with the breakdown of scar tissue, as well as increased blood flow and circulation. 


Kneading massage technique involves small, circular motions on both sides of the spine, which eliminates toxic materials from the muscle tissue and revitalizes the nerves. Through manipulating and stretching motions, this technique relieves tense and sore muscles, as well as promotes deeper blood and lymph circulation.


Vibration massage involves pressing and releasing the tissues of the body in an up and down movement. This technique can relieve soreness and discomfort, as well as help promote circulation while soothing and calming the nerves. Massage chairs usually have several rhythmic or pulsating settings in the seat and even the back. 


Compression is a safe and widely used technique to improve blood and lymph flow. A popular example is compression socks, which are used to improve blood flow to the feet and help improve circulation. The compression massage created by the airbags in a massage chair provides the same effect, helping enhance circulation while also massaging tired, aching muscles. Swelling can also be relieved using compression massage. Just like compression socks, the compression of tissues improves lymph flow (the fluid that cells are immersed in) which helps reduce swelling and prevent swelling from re-occurring. Improving blood flow to an area is also a key way to help muscles recover from injury or sports, as blood carries oxygen and nutrients which will help the muscle to repair itself.


Rolling massage technique applies a constant pressure by rolling gently up and down the back near the spine. This technique relieves muscle tension, improves circulation, and relaxes the back. Most massage chairs have massage rollers that warm and loosen the muscles by performing this rolling technique.  


The Zero Gravity position is inspired by NASA as it imitates the position of astronauts when they launch into space. The zero G position used by NASA was carefully designed by engineers to distribute weight evenly across the the body. During liftoff, astronauts’ bodies are put through immense stress and pressure as they leave the Earth’s atmosphere. Sitting in a reclined position helps their bodies endure the pressure of zero gravity and minimize pain. So how does zero gravity all translate into a full body massage chair? When zero gravity mode is selected, the massage chair eases the user into a reclined position where your thighs are relative to your back to maximize comfort and minimize pressure. There are typically two stages of zero gravity. The second stage brings the user further back placing the legs above the heart level. This helps to further increase blood flow which can help the heart and body.