how to Choosing the Right Inversion Table: A Comprehensive Guide

Do you remember how great it felt as a youngster to swing upside down from the monkey bars and see the world from a new angle? In those days, we did it for kicks. However, many people, particularly those with back problems, find that inverting properly and under the supervision of a medical practitioner is both therapeutic and useful.

How to choose the right inversion table, There are several factors to consider in order to make an informed decision. Inversion tables offer a range of health benefits, including back pain relief, improved circulation, and stress reduction. However, not all inversion tables are created equal. This guide will walk you through the key steps to consider when choosing an inversion table that suits your needs.

An Inversion Table: What Is It?

According to John Gallucci, Jr., CEO of JAG-ONE Physical Therapy and an appointed member of the New Jersey Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, inversion tables are cushioned tables that allow you to strap yourself in and either tilts backward on an obtuse angle or completely upside down to relieve pain associated with a variety of spinal issues, including back pain.

“Inversion tables are a form of spinal traction,” he explains. According to proponents of inverted exercise, “the idea is that by hanging upside down, you’re taking pressure off the nerves of your spine, which gives the disks between the vertebrae room to rest.”

The operation of an inversion table.

As the user lies face down on an inversion table, the weight of the body is taken off the spine, relieving strain on the spinal cord and disks. Yoga practices like supported headstands and inversion tables are just a few of the tools at your disposal for inversion treatment.

Cleveland Clinic’s spinal specialist Russell DeMicco, D.O., recommends giving it a go for relieving low back pain, muscular spasms, and sciatica.

Inversion Table Operation Instructions

In order to utilize an inversion table safely, “you must relax your body and lie back,” as Gallucci puts it. Then, while resting flat, you may lean forward until your chin touches your chest.

When utilizing an inversion table, “make sure you’re using it under the guidance of a licensed physical therapist or with someone supervising you,” he advises. Physical therapists are ideal observers because they can both instruct patients on the correct technique and monitor their progress.

Not everyone can benefit from inversion treatment. People with heart disease, vertigo, or other chronic problems may even be advised against trying it. Before doing this, talk to your doctor or physical therapist.

Benefits of Inversion Tables

Inversion tables are used by sportsmen and celebrities including LeBron James, Justin Timberlake, and Eva Mendes for fitness, rehabilitation, and beauty. What does the evidence indicate about inversion tables’ benefits?

Early psychology research revealed inversion treatment enhanced spinal traction and flexibility. A 2013 research of 47 women with persistent back pain revealed inversion treatment reduced back pain and improved spine flexibility.

In yoga classes, inversion treatment may improve mood. A 2007 research of 37 Iyengar yoga practitioners found that their emotions improved from before to after class, lowering anxiety, anger, and depression. Iyengar yoga offers headstands and shoulder stands without an inversion table.

Gallucci says inversion treatment helps treat back pain, muscular spasms, compressed spinal disks, sciatica, and kidney stones. Inversion tables offer numerous advantages, making them a popular choice for those seeking alternative solutions to common health issues. Some of the pros include:

1. Back Pain Relief

Inversion tables are widely recognized for their ability to provide relief from back pain. When you’re inverted, gravity helps to decompress the spine, which can alleviate pressure on discs and nerves, leading to reduced pain and discomfort.

2. Improved Circulation

Using an inversion table can help improve blood circulation throughout the body. Inverted positions encourage blood flow to the brain, enhancing oxygen supply and nutrient delivery to brain cells.

3. Stress Reduction

Inversion therapy can also promote relaxation and stress reduction. The gentle stretching of muscles and improved blood flow contribute to a sense of well-being and relaxation.

Possible Dangers Associated with Inverted Tables

While inversion tables may help relieve discomfort for some people, there are also potential dangers to utilizing them.

Tiny research of 18 males in 1986 revealed that being upside down for 7 minutes raised their blood pressure, while a 1984 study found that inversion treatment raised ocular pressure.

If you have a history of stroke, heart illness, vision problems, are pregnant, or have any other medical issue, according to Gallucci, you shouldn’t utilize an inversion table.

Conclusion: Before using an inversion table, it is important to see a doctor to determine whether inversion treatment is right for you, and to provide a complete medical history to the physical therapist supervising your session.

Potential Drawbacks of Inversion Tables

While inversion tables offer numerous benefits, it’s important to be aware of the cons associated with their use:

Medical Considerations

Not everyone is a suitable candidate for inversion therapy. Individuals with certain medical conditions such as high blood pressure, glaucoma, or heart disease should consult a healthcare professional before using an inversion table.

Discomfort and Dizziness

Some individuals may experience discomfort or dizziness during or after using an inversion table. It’s recommended to start with a gentle angle of inversion and gradually increase it as your body adjusts.

Time and Frequency

Inversion therapy requires time and consistency to yield results. If you’re unable to commit to regular sessions, you may not experience the full benefits.

Factors to Consider When Choosing an Inversion Table

Selecting the right inversion table involves considering various factors to ensure it meets your specific needs. Here are some essential points to ponder:

Weight and Height Limit

Different inversion tables have weight and height restrictions. Check your inversion table’s parameters before buying to ensure it fits your body adequately for safety.

Gallucci states, “If these limits are not followed, further injury can occur to the person utilizing the table due to the risk of falling or the table not operating correctly.”

The average inversion table weight limit is 300 pounds, however, they can hold 200 to 600 pounds. Most inversion tables accommodate 4-foot-3 to 7-foot users.

Gallucci suggests asking your physical therapist or doctor for a recommendation if you can’t locate an inversion table that fits. He recommends consulting an expert before buying a table that supports bigger or heavier persons since they cost more.

Customizable Design

Gallucci advises adjusting your inversion table to your physique. Set the table’s length to suit your height and adjust the ankle straps to keep your feet in place as you flip upside down.

“Customizing these settings to fit your body will ensure a proper inversion therapy session and reduce injury risk,” he explains.

FDA Registration

Gallucci recommends checking an inversion table’s FDA certification first. He said a product must be safely and appropriately tested to get FDA clearance.

Easy-Reach Ankle System

Gallucci suggests an inversion table with an easy-reach ankle system, but it’s not necessary. He notes that with an easy-reach ankle system, you can generally strap both ankles in and lock yourself in with a button, unlike other tables.

Space and Storage

Inversion tables come in different sizes, so it’s important to assess the available space in your home. Some tables are foldable for easier storage when not in use.

Safety Features

Safety should be a top priority. Choose a table with secure ankle locking mechanisms, sturdy construction, and nonslip materials to prevent accidents during inversion.

Price and Budget

Inversion tables come at various price points. While it’s tempting to opt for the cheapest option, investing in a quality table with essential features is a better long-term choice.


You want an inversion table to be durable, safe, and easy to use since you’ll be upside down. Make sure you can get in and out easily, advises Dr. DeMicco.

Special Features

Some inversion tables contain massage, lumbar support, heat, acupressure nodes, and other elements to improve stretching. Gallucci suggests asking your doctor which choice is ideal for you as the advantages of each depend on why you’re undergoing inversion treatment.

Extra Handholds

Look for a model with waist, shoulder, and head handholds to optimize stretching. Gallucci thinks these grips aid stretching and traction.

Top Picks Bestselling Inversion Tables On Amazon

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The price of an inversion table.

Dr. DeMicco says the average inversion table costs between $99 and $250, but that more advanced ones may cost as much as $500.

He says that before investing in an inversion table for your house, you should give it a try to see whether it’s beneficial.

According to Gallucci, you may test out spinal traction by renting an inversion table from several websites.

However, Gallucci recommends first using an inversion table under the supervision of a certified physical therapist before investing in one of your own.

If you’re worried about injuring yourself or exacerbating your discomfort, Gallucci advises that you try inversion treatment first.

Tips for Safe Inversion Table Use

Already purchased your ideal inversion table? Make the most of it safely.

Talk to Your Doctor

While most healthy individuals without risk concerns may use an inversion table without consequences, it’s vital to see your doctor before starting inversion treatment, particularly if you have eye troubles or high blood pressure.

Inversion tables may be difficult to use, so have someone assist you in getting on and off until you get used to it. This individual can also check your seatbelt.

Start Slowly, Tip back 30 degrees to ease into inversion table sessions. For the elderly, tilting 10 degrees may help.

Before increasing session duration, Gallucci recommends trying one or two minutes a day. “Once you get used to it, you can find the best angle,” he explains. “Research suggests three minutes at a 60-degree tilt is where patients feel the most relief.”

Integrate It into a Wellness Plan

Dr. DeMicco emphasizes that back pain inversion tables should be part of a comprehensive therapy approach. He believes inversion tables are part of passive or modalities-based therapy that may involve heat, cold, and electrical stimulation. “They can also lead to a movement-based exercise program and be used in addition to aerobic conditioning like walking, running, and swimming.”

Dr. DeMicco also recommends keeping a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet, and avoiding smoking for back discomfort.

Gallucci believes inversion treatment works better with additional exercises. He suggests combining stretching and inversion treatment to relax muscles and stay flexible. Request adequate stretches from your physical therapist to complement inversion treatment.


Selecting the right inversion table is a decision that should be made after careful consideration of your individual needs and circumstances. By evaluating factors such as weight capacity, adjustability, safety features, and potential drawbacks, you can make an informed choice that aligns with your goals for improved health and well-being.

Remember, before beginning any new health regimen, it’s advisable to consult a healthcare professional, especially if you have pre-existing medical conditions. With the right choice and proper usage, an inversion table can become a valuable addition to your wellness routine.

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