One of the challenging things (and great things) about trying to come up with a list of the best massage chairs for 2023 is that there are so many outstanding manufacturers and models out there. In the early days of massage chair technology, there were, as you might expect, few companies producing these technological marvels. It is a different story today.
Several factors have caused the demand for advanced massage chairs and the number of companies looking to meet that demand to skyrocket in recent years. For one thing, people today tend to have a much more holistic approach to health. They are much more aware of and attuned to the mind-body connection. Simply getting an annual physical and seeing their doctor when sick or injured is not enough to optimize their health. They understand that the stress they carry around with them day in and day out can be a sort of “virus” that adversely affects their well-being.
Another reason for the growing popularity of massage chairs is the tremendous advances that have been made in technology. Devices that decades ago were just a few rollers moving “mindlessly” up and down the chair back have evolved into finely-tuned massage systems with highly orchestrated movements of rollers, air cells, and other components that produce sensations almost indistinguishable from the hand movements of a Shiatsu master or Swedish massage expert.
And then, of course, life can just be stressful at times. Perhaps now more than ever, 24/7/365 access to your own “massage therapist” can be vital to your overall health and happiness.
As a result, many people are wondering, “What is the best massage chair in 2023?” This article will help you understand your options so you can make a well-informed decision.
The Best Massage Chair in 2023 for You
Before describing some of the characteristics that might put a massage chair on someone’s “best of” list, it is essential to note that there is no one “best” chair. That would be like saying vanilla is the “best” ice cream. You cannot argue with its worthiness for consideration, but you will never get buy-in from a chocolate ice cream lover!
The entries in the list below all offer the basic requirements for an exceptional massage chair—things like carefully designed choreography, high-quality components, excellent craftsmanship, attractive aesthetics, industry-leading warranties and customer support, etc.—but they do so in a way that surpasses other chairs and delivers truly unique experiences.
Top-Rated Massage Chairs 2023: Leading Contenders
As a company deeply immersed in the massage chair industry and one that works with a long list of providers, we feel confident that virtually any model from these six manufacturers could comfortably be crowned “best,” depending on your criteria for the title.
For a massage experience that beautifully blends modern technology and the ancient art of massage, many massage chair aficionados will not get into anything other than an OHCO. The OHCO M.8 features the design of industry legend Ken Okuyama with choreography by Shiatsu master (sensei) Akira Okabayashi.
When the M.8 comes to life, you will swear you are in the hands of a skilled Shiatsu massage practitioner. Features like the gentle neck traction the chair can apply, neck-to-hamstring capability in upright, zero gravity, and lay flat positions, and deep calf kneading are favorites with chair owners. Plus, there are other useful functions, like aromatherapy, air ionizer, and white noise generator. The word “serenity” comes up often from people who purchase OHCO massage chairs.
For discerning consumers who know massage modalities and massage chair technology, the name Panasonic sends delightful chills down their spine! That is because its various models are revered by users who “find pleasure in pain.” Pain may be a slight overstatement, but Panasonic is known for chairs that can deliver expert deep tissue massage therapy.
The Panasonic MAK1, in particular, is the world’s most advanced chair for deep tissue massage. But these chairs are not brutes. They are as smart as they are strong, with sensors that detect a user’s needs over 100 times a second and adjust the massage pressure appropriately. When you have some muscle kinks to work out or just a body carrying around far too much stress, a Panasonic massage chair can be your best friend.
Positive Posture Brio Sport
For “next level” massage therapy in their homes, many massage chair owners turn to the Positive Posture brand. For example, active people and athletes get tremendous benefits from the Brio Sport—the first and only massage chair specifically designed to speed and improve recovery after exercise. From reducing inflammation to improving lymph drainage and blood circulation, the Brio Sport enables people to work out more vigorously and more often to achieve their health and fitness goals.
The D.Core Cirrus is unique in how it blends a True Shiatsu Action massage mechanism and traditional Japanese aesthetic styling featuring real black walnut wood. There is no reason a massage chair cannot also enhance the design and beauty of the room where it resides, and these chairs do exactly that while providing deep, penetrating massages that release stuck fascia tissue and enable muscles to move more freely. Japanese massage therapist Dr. Takehiro Izawa is the genius behind the perfectly choreographed movements.
Made by the Korean company Hutech, KAI massage chairs are designed to delight and surprise users with an amazing massage experience—and they do not disappoint!
With the KAI GTS9 specifically, you will get a stylish, comfortable massage chair that delivers wonderfully relaxing body work with proprietary Sonic Wave Technology. And it offers additional features that help to relax your mind as well.
“Best of” list entrants often have a sub-qualifier, and here we could say that KOYO is the best massage chair for the money made in Japan. The KOYO 303TS, for example, is a truly remarkable feat of massage chair engineering. Within a feature set too long to list in this article are things like full-body air massage, auto body scan, and advanced 4D massage mechanism.
It also scores points for its zero gravity recline capability, Bluetooth sound system, and intuitive touch screen remote. If you are looking for a feature-rich massage chair made in the country where the industry got its start, you cannot go wrong with KOYO.
There are certainly others that we could add to this group of the best massage chair brands. However, the four above really should be on every shopper’s shortlist.
Features To Consider in the Best Massage Chairs of 2023
The best massage chairs earn that label for many reasons—their quality, the type of massage experience they deliver, etc. The assessment is not simply about their features. Still, functionality is something you should consider when shopping for massage chairs.
Below are some massage chair features with which you should familiarize yourself. However, keep in mind that the best massage chair for you may not have all of them.
- Body scanning. This functionality enables the chair to sense your shape and optimize its massages.
- Massage types. Rolling, kneading, tapping, and other movements are used to deliver an effective massage. It is a good idea to understand which types a chair offers or does not offer.
- Massage programs. These are sets of movements typically created in a collaboration between a skilled massage therapist and the manufacturer’s engineers. The number and types of programs can affect your enjoyment of a massage chair.
- Heat therapy. Heat helps loosen muscles and improve circulation. Knowing where a chair can apply heat is crucial if you need or want heat therapy.
- Zero gravity position. This is a specific reclined position that takes pressure off the spine, improves circulation, and enhances relaxation.
- Additional therapies. It is common for chairs to have other therapy modalities like color, sound, etc. If these appeal to you, it is important to check on their availability in a particular chair model.
- Bluetooth connectivity. This feature allows you to connect to your smartphone or other mobile device.
This list is not comprehensive, partly because new features are always under development. But it gives you some good points to ponder.
More Help Finding the Best Massage Chair for You
For more insights, get a copy of our Massage Chair Buyer’s Guide. Or better yet, visit a Furniture For Life location to experience The World’s Best Massage Chairs® in person and find the perfect one for you!