There’s nothing like a good back massage after a long day’s work.
If your job involves sitting down at a desk working on a computer all day, every day, you most certainly understand the aches and pains it brings.
Besides finding some desk-side exercises to do, a good massage can help relax your mind, soothe your muscles, and improve your day generally.
Not everyone can afford to visit a professional masseuse every other day to get a good back rub and massage done. This is where a back massager comes handy.
This guide explores why you could use a back massager for your office chair, and the best options available on the market for your needs.
What Is A Back Massager?
A back massager, sometimes referred to as a back massage pad or massage cushion, is a device that provides you with relief from pain by mimicking the hands of a masseuse.
It can take the form of a hand-held wand, pillow, mat, or a pad/cushion that you can place on your office chair, instead of upgrading it, and save your lower lumbar. Many back massagers used with office chairs also have a car adapter such that you can quickly and easily switch it for use in your car.
While back massagers are primarily intended for your back, you can still use them to soothe other pains and aches like tired legs or a stiff neck, though there are portable pads for these parts.
The perfect back massager for office chairs delivers heat exactly where you want it to work by digging deep to loosen any stiff muscles.
If you can’t afford a proper massage chair or you’re not ready to ditch your office chair for the extra massage capability, you can throw a back massager on top of your current chair. Some even let you lay them flat on your bed or couch so you can experience massage benefits anytime, anywhere.
Benefits Of A Back Massager For Office Chairs
If you’re on a tight budget, or you need a portable and easier option to get a massage chair, a back massager is a good, affordable investment.
Plus, it’s compact as it fits snug on your office chair without taking up too much space. It’s almost the size of a chair’s backrest, but it can even be smaller than that. Some forms are even small enough to carry in a large purse or backpack so you can store them easily.
Back massagers are also versatile so you can use them on other body parts by leaning in with your arms or knees to get the massage.
You can also carry your back massager around compared to pushing a massage chair from one part of the room to another, and put it in your back to carry it with you on the go. Besides being portable, it’s also compatible with your car so you can connect its adapter to your car and get some back relief.
Finally, it’s a convenient way of getting a massage at any time of day or night, and from any location. Back massagers are also quiet so you can enjoy a discreet massage as you work, and they’re safe thanks to the safety features that ensure they don’t consume much electricity if you forget to switch it off.
This back massager for your office chair may not have all the power or bells and whistles of a massage chair, but for a lesser price, it’s a good alternative. If you want lighter, occasional massages instead of deep-tissue kneading, try this massage cushion.
Its features include an independent heat button, a car adapter to use on a car seat, four preset massage programs, and three massage speeds. You can even massage your upper/middle/lower back, neck, thighs, or multiple areas.
This massage seat cushion comes with a heating option and different vibration settings. It provides strong and relaxing vibrating massages that will soothe your tired, aching muscles.
Its heat is not hot, just warm enough to ensure your body is substantially warm and satisfied, and you can use it with the massage. You can use it on your car seat by connecting its adapter to your car’s lighter, or place it on your couch at home if you want.
This back massager uses eight massage nodes: four to work on your back and another four on your neck area. Unlike our second option, this one doesn’t come with massage nodes, but it has a vibration feature that’s used to work your lower back and buttock muscles.
Although it’s affordable, it has some of the bells and whistles of a more expensive unit, so you’re bound to get good value for your money, and have a great massage experience.
The Zyllion back massager can be installed on your office chair or sofa thanks to its slim design. It also features massage nodes that move up and down your back and neck for a comfy massage.
If you’re looking for a good deep tissue massage, this back massager will relax your body and muscles, and in case you get a defective one, there’s a one-year replacement warranty available so you can get a new one without issues.
This is a quiet and compact back massager that’s ideal for use at work with your office chair. It uses massage nodes that rotate and move up and down your back to massage your body.
One of its nifty features is the spot focus that lets you lock the nodes such that they’ll only massage a specific area of your back. If you suffer from back pain, this can target that painful spot directly and give you relief from the pain.
This massage cushion features a high elastic strap that holds it down firmly on your office chair or any other seat. Its design features a breathable mesh and high-quality PU leather, with four massage options to choose from.
Plus, there’s a Shiatsu option with 8 kneading nodes: 4 for the back and another 4 for your neck to deliver a relaxing massage.
If you want to relieve tight muscles around your neck area, use the rolling option that turns anticlockwise or clockwise based on your needs, and you can still use it to massage your hips or thighs and adjust the intensity.
Also included with this back massager is a heating feature that soothes your neck and back, plus it avoids overheating by turning itself off automatically. It’s convenient to use as you can simply control it using the corded hand controller.
This is an attractively designed back massager that you can still enjoy sitting on even when it’s not in use. It features a car adapter and uses two massage techniques to relieve muscle pain.
You can adjust the massage intensity, and enjoy the heating option that works really well on your back to offer you the much-needed relief from back pain and sore muscles.
This back massager has a wide range of functions. You can enjoy a rolling, kneading, or Shiatsu massage and even change the massage spots. It also concentrates on different massage options depending on your needs.
Among its nifty features is the ability to adjust based on what you want. For instance, you can adjust the back height to serve anyone else in the office or home, and control it through a hand processor. This way, you can do a spot massage and personalize it to suit the exact spot that needs some treatment.
Its heating function turns off automatically after 15 minutes though, and it doesn’t come with a neck massager, though you can buy this separately.
It’s pricier than other options on this list, but it’s still an effective and efficient back massager for your office chair.
The IDODO massager comes with a car adapter, and you can lay it flat too, which is a useful addition.
This back massager offers three different massage options: Shiatsu, vibration, and rolling. It comes with four massage nodes that relieve tense muscles as they move up and down your back, plus its rolling option can cover harder to reach parts, while the vibration option stimulates your muscles.
You can pick from three different intensities, adjust the nodes’ height and width to target specific painful spots, and for better back support, you get a detachable neck pillow.
The massager fits on office or home chairs, and you can prevent it from sliding or slipping using the integrated strap. It also has a heating system that independently heats the seat, but the back heat is only available with the vibration mode.
Like other massagers on this list, you can control this massager using a remote for your convenience. It doesn’t have a car adapter though.
This neck and back massager by Comfier offers full-body relaxation by utilizing innovative 2D/3D finger pressure rolling, Shiatsu, air compression, heat, and vibration functions. This way, you get an omni-comfortable massage to ease tension and soothe your muscles as you would at a spa.
Its creative 2D/3D Shiatsu massage has four rotation nodes that continuously offer deep kneading massages for your shoulders and neck, while incorporating outward motion to create finger pressure massage for your back.
It also has adjustable rolling and spot massages along your spine to combat pain across your back, and you can adjust its massage heads width to fit your body. The spot massage lets you focus on one area for maximum relaxation, but you can still select upper, lower, or full-back to massage the desired target spots.
Optional infrared heat on the Shiatsu nodes delivers gentle warmth that relaxes tense muscles further. Plus, the adjustable air compression massages your hips and waist from two airbags to relieve tension and provide deep tissue massage by your office chair.
Three adjustable intensity settings are provided, and you’re assured of the ultimate comfort while sitting on your office chair enjoying a therapeutic massage.
Types Of Back Massagers For Office Chairs
There are several different types of back massagers, each with its own benefits and drawbacks. However, the main ones you’ll come across when searching for a good back massager for office chair include:
This is a Japanese form of massage that just means finger pressure as it involves adding more finger pressure to stimulate your body’s different energies.
It focuses on energy circulation and uses the massager’s rotating nodes, which act like the masseuse’s fingers, elbows, and knees.
Some of its benefits include reduced stress and tension, pain relief, injury recovery, help with digestion, skin stimulation for blood circulation, and much more. If you’re pregnant, check with your doctor before choosing this type of massage.
This type involves vibration – jostling and shaking movements – produced by a motor in the massager. It offers different effects based on the speed and pressure applied.
Quick and firm movements stimulate your body while slow and light movements soothe it. They’re more effective compared to the strokes used in casual massages, and offer pain relief while stimulating your nervous system. It’s not recommended for pregnant women though.
This type uses heat to massage your back like a masseur would with heated stones. It relaxes your muscles, improves blood circulation, enhances the immune system through blood flow stimulation, improves muscle flexibility, and offers relieving symptoms among other benefits.
This kind of massage uses massage nodes to stimulate the kind of movement a masseur uses when lifting and rolling your skin between his or her fingers and thumbs.
It relaxes the muscles by moving the nodes up and down your back. Among its benefits include loosening your skin to look younger and healthier, relaxing muscle spasms, managing chronic pain, relieving back pain, relieving muscular tension, and much more.
Kneading consists of compressing and squeezing by grasping or compressing the tissue against underlying structures of your bones.
In a spa, the masseur would use the surface of her hand to compress the tissue, but the back massager stimulates movement using massage nodes.
Its benefits include treating tight muscles, relieving pain, stimulating nerves, improving blood circulation, treating swelling, promoting muscle relaxation, and much more.
What To Look For In A Back Massager For An Office Chair
A good back massager offers the following spa-like features:
Shape: A back massager for your office chair should be able to target the source of your pain and reach where it needs to go.
Size: The size should be able to fit well in your space and be portable for when you want to move it around.
Electric or non-electric: Check for a back massager you can easily carry around or take on the go, and still meets your needs. It should also be easy to use with your office chair.
Massage nodes: Back massagers come with massage nodes but they vary in number depending on the brand and model. If you want a deep and intense massage, check the number of nodes it provides.
A variety of intensities for massages: Check for the Percussion or Shiatsu style of massage with the back massager you pick as these closely replicate the hands of the masseuse, and give a deep tissue massage by thundering on your back. If you want a massage that’ll work on knots on your back, check for a kneading function.
Adjustable vibration: Some back massagers provide extra vibration functions for added relief.
Heat: This relieves pain by heating your skin and stimulating the sensors. Consequently, it blocks pain signals from reaching your brain, so you feel comforted and relieved.
Intensity and speed settings: A massage that can flex with you is good to have so check for one with a selection of intensity settings as some only have one. Speed is good if you want a gentle or rigorous massage so you can adjust accordingly.
Other features to check for include a timer, portability, if the massager is rechargeable, any attachments that target other body parts, and memory functions so you don’t have to keep adjusting the settings.
Finding the best back massager for your office chair may not be as easy as it seems, what with the crowded market today.
There are many different competing brands and models available, all advertised as the best possible for your needs, so it’s easy to feel confused and not know where to start.
To ensure you buy the right back massager for your office needs, check out any of our 10 best picks and be sure to keep in mind the buying guide considerations for better results.
Diana Paul is a certified nutritionist who writes for leading health blogs. She is a master herbalist, yoga teacher, forager, and wild-crafting writer She is focused on helping people transform life blocks to opportunities. Based in NYC, she often holds health seminars and lectures.