Inversion tables are an important part of spinal decompression therapy. Similar in concept to traction, which uses gravity, spinal decompression therapy using an inversion table lets gravity help pull the spin back into place. The basic premise is to have a table-like surface that is able to shift, not unlike a see-saw, and to be locked into place so that the occupant is at a particular angle from the ground. The degree of incline determines how much gravity is applied towards pulling on the spine. While it is not for everyone, anyone considering purchasing an inversion table should not do so without consulting their spinal health doctor. Many patients, especially those with ruptured discs, may experience a worsening of symptoms, or even develop new ones. Standard warnings aside, for those who are already cleared to use an inversion table, the following is a brief guide on what to look for when purchasing once, what pricing to expect, and examples of some popular models.
Inversion tables are not only for back pain relief, it can also be utilized as exercising equipment to let you crunch you abs; vertically, giving you the extra workout needed to reach your ideal body shape even faster. There are a lot of sources and tutorials available online that show exactly how to harness the power of inversion tables through multiple exercising routines.
Like any piece of fitness of health equipment, when it involves the necessity to not only bear the weight of the user, but to remain stable as well, for any good one it will costs a few hundred dollars. On average, some of the best rated tables range between $250 and $800. The variance comes from the amount of weight it has to bear and the severity of the incline it can achieve. The smaller the user, the lighter the table can be, whereas larger users will need to purchase tables that are made of sturdier and often-times, reinforced, metals. There are also two general classes for inversion tables among users; the travel table and at home table. The former is typically less expensive and meant to be manageable enough to take along on vacation, while the at home is not generally meant to be taken out as its often too heavy to do so with ease.
Weight And Size
Inversion tables in general will hover around the 75lb to 100+lb range. It again depends on how much weight it is going to be expected to bear. Aside from the significant weights of the tables, they also take up a fair bit up space. Much like a stationary bike or other larger piece of equipment, inversion tables will tend to take up a fair bit of space. Some are designed to be folded up slightly for easy storage, but many often set up and left established and ready.
Ease And Degree of Incline
Another important aspect of inversion therapy, and thus of the table, is the degree of incline the table can reach. It is also important that it not only be able to reach the desired amount of incline, but that it is easy to get there and back. As many people intend to use inversion tables without assistance, it is important that the system used to initiate and return from incline is easy to use for the intended patient undergoing therapy. As many people shop online, this is one of the hardest aspect to gauge from pictures and descriptions alone. It is important to read through reviews or ask questions on forums regarding particular models of interest, especially if there is any limited upper mobility. Most inversion tables rely on the user being able to make full use of their arms to operate them.
Some Popular Inversion Tables
The following are brief product overviews on some of the markets most popular models. These reflect both the lighter end and heavier use inversion tables.
Teeter Hang Ups EP 960
- Supports users up to 250lb officially.
- Weighs 75lbs and measures 84 x 28.8 x 86 inches.
- Inclines to multiple degrees, including 20, 40, and 60 degrees.
On average, according to both positive and negative reviews, this particular inversion table is ideal for the heavier set users. Despite it only having an official weight limit of 250lb, many users report that being a little over proved no issue, though each is allowed to make that judgment call on their own. Weight limits aside, it has a very solid construction and comfortable table portion, as well as supports for the ankles. Like many inversion tables, the feet are intended to help secure the body against the table while inverted. It has a patented easy strap system for adjusting the angle, as well as easy of use when returning from incline.
Body Champ Inversion Table IT8070
- Supports users up to 250lbs.
- Weighs only 47lbs and measures 55.5 X 29.5 X 58 inches set up and a paltry 13 X 29 X 75 inches when folded.
- Full inversion up to 180 degrees.
In striking contrast to the former example, this model of inversion table is designed to fold away for easy storage, or even travel depending on the destination. Designed for both beginners and experienced practitioners and inversion therapy, this particular table is an example of simplicity and craftsmanship. The biggest issue that users commonly remark is that despite the higher weight limit, they don’t think people at the 250lb mark would likely feel that secure. The ankle restraint bars also have less padding than some models, so there is potential discomfort for sessions going over 10 minutes.
Iron Man Locking Inversion Table LXT850
- Supports users up to 300lbs.
- Inverts up to full 180 degrees.
- Locks in place for ab training exercises.
In addition to being able to use a table like this model for inversion therapy, this particular style also locks into positions that allow users to perform specialized abdominal exercises. The benefits of which include increased resistance from gravity, which turns into better results for some. Among inversion table reviews, tables that allow both inversion only and exercising are not often included on the same list, but they should merit the same attention. Inversion based stretching can sometimes benefit people post and or before exercising routines, as well as those suffering with back problems.
Which Is Best
When it comes to determining which is the best for you, there are several factors to consider. The first thing to take into mind, is why. Why do you want an inversion table? When possible, it is best to try out inversion therapy under medical supervision to ensure that it will potentially benefit you. As mentioned previously, not every spinal injury can be alleviated with spinal decompression, and some can even be made worse. Before investing in even a low end table, it is wise to be sure one is needed and can be of benefit. The second steps towards shopping for the right table involves planning how much space you have to work with, if you want a table to stay set up, or does it need to be moved out of the way on a regular basis? Once you have these bits of data, add in the weight limit you require and budget before shopping. Always be sure to verify a table meets your weight limit needs, and when possible be sure it exceeds that figure. One of the most common remarks when people ask about a table’s weight limit and security, is that those who are close to its limit may feel that it is slightly wobbly. Given the nature of how inversion tables are used, improper usage by ignoring weight limits can lead to serious neck and back injuries as a result of falling from the device.