Whether you are 20 or well into your retirement, back pain can be a huge problem in your life. There are many different reasons as to why someone might develop back pain, but usually most back pain issues can be linked to a compressed spine.
Gravity is to blame. As we go through our daily lives, a silent and unnoticed force is constantly making our bodies work. Gravity slowly and steadily compresses our spine every day. This unwavering force can do great damage to our spine and joints over time. It can also be the source of pinched nerves.
Luckily, there is a simple solution. Inversion therapy is one of the best ways to decompress your spine and joints, thus releasing the pressure that has been built up over time. The idea is pretty simple, invert your whole body to a certain position and let the gravity do the rest of the work. Doing this may decrease the amount of stress that you have put onto your joints and spine and help you eliminate any possible pinched nerves while reducing the compression in your spine.
Using Inversion Tables For Inversion Therapy
There are a few different ways you can practice inversion therapy, but he two most common methods are with the help of either inversion boots or inversions tables. Unfortunately gravity boots, as they are also called, are a somewhat aggressive form of spinal decompression.
The problem with using inversion boots is that you have much less control over your body while completely upside down and hanging from your feet. If something happens, such as dizziness or sudden cardiovascular issues, it could be troublesome to react quickly and reposition your body upright.
Because of this, we have chosen to focus on a safer alternative to gravity boots, the inversion table. These tables are designed to help you invert your body to the desired angle, which gives you more control over your body and puts less stress on your feet, ankles, and other joints.
While using an inversion table, you can easily turn your body upright within seconds if an issue were to arise. Additionally, having the ability to choose the angle of your inversion allows you to control your decompression with precision.
Inversion therapy isn’t for everyone. People who have certain conditions like high blood pressure, glaucoma, heart related diseases, should always consult with their doctor before using an inversion table. Even if you do not suffer from any of the above listed issues, we still strongly suggest discussing the use of an inversion table with your doctor. They will give you good feedback about the positives and possible negatives you may face when using an inversion table.
Inversion Therapy History
The thought of using gravity to decompress the spine has been around for a while. There are records indicating the use of inversion tables as far back as 400 BC. In the recent century, the use of inversion tables to help with back pain, joint ache, and pinched nerves became more and more popular. Inversion therapy gained a lot of hype, and around 1980 many companies started producing inversion tables which were designed to be used at home.
However, the materials used by those companies weren’t exactly up to par and many accidents and injuries surfaced, leading to a decline of the use of inversion tables. But as time went on, more and more studies were published specifying that inversion therapy may be the answer to many back problems, thus leading to a steady incline in the use of inversion tables.
Today, there are hundreds of different companies that manufacture and sell inversion tables designed for use at home. Deciding which tables to use and invest money into can be somewhat cumbersome. There are many varieties of tables out there designed for many different types of people. Some are better built than others, and we are here to help you decide which of these tables is best suited for your home.
The Top 3 Inversion Tables
We have looked at some of the most talked about and used inversion tables on the market and compiled a short but accurate list for your use. Every person is different, and all of us have different needs. Take a look at our list and decide which of these tables is best suited for you.
Keep in mind that these tables aren’t listed in any specific order, but they are different from each other in certain ways that will make each best for different individuals.
1. Innova ITX9600 Heavy Duty Inversion Therapy Table
Like we said earlier, there are hundreds if not thousands of different inversion tables out there. Some come with additional accessories, while others are plain and simple. The ITX9600 is the plain and simple version of an inversion table. There isn’t a list of different add-ons that come alongside this table. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Because this product is made for a single direct purpose without all the extra bells and whistles, expect the price to reflect this as well.
At the moment, the ITX9600 can be purchased for roughly $93 at your favorite online retailer. Don’t let the price fool you either, just because its affordable doesn’t mean this product will break quickly. This inversion table is built tough and is super durable. It is in fact a “Heavy Duty” inversion table as implied by its name.
Innova designed this table to be able to withstand 300 pounds of weight and to be adjustable for a person from 4 feet and 10 inches up to 6 feet and 6 inches in height. Some customers did state that their height was slightly above the recommended height limit but they were able to use this inversion table without any problems. Although it might be completely possible to slightly exceed the suggested high limits for this product, we still strongly urge against it.
The reason being is that these inversion tables are designed with balance in mind, meaning that a person who is well within the height range for this table should be able to invert themselves with relative ease by simply lifting their hands above their head. However, if the height range is exceeded or not met, inverting your body might prove to be somewhat of a challenge. The weight capacity of this table is also a strong indication that the frame is well built and can withstand a pretty high amount of wear and tear.
The ITX9600 gives you the ability to select between five different angle slot pins, which will determine the angle of your inversion. The angle slot pin system comes with a protective cover and lets you choose between 15, 30, 45, 60, and 85 degrees for your inversion. The maximum inversion angle that you can achieve with this table is 170 degrees, which is 10 degrees less than some of the other tables out there.
As we mentioned above, inversion tables generally work by determining your center of gravity, which allows you to easily invert simply by raising your hands above your head. This center of gravity can be somewhat difficult to set in stone with some tables if there aren’t enough movable parts to accommodate your body when you lie down and attempt to invert yourself. However, Innova cleverly incorporated a movable head rest to help you adjust the table in such a way that your center of gravity is perfectly tuned every time you use this inversion table.
The ankle system is also designed with your body in mind. It is ergonomically shaped to reduce stress on your heels while you are in an inverted state. The foam padding used for the leg rollers used to secure your ankles in place is very thick and is sure to deliver the highest amount of comfort even throughout the longest inversion sessions.
The same can be said for both the back head rest and the back support section. Both are lined with about an inch thick padding and are vinyl coated to help reduce the chance for tearing and increase overall durability.
The packaging for the ITX9600 comes with all the tools you will need to assemble the full product. This means you don’t have to ask your neighbor for that Phillips screw driver that you keep misplacing. Everything you need to assemble this table is attached to a single piece of cardboard with part numbers so that you can ensure you have everything needed to assemble the table. The user manual is simple to follow and it shouldn’t take you more than 60 minutes to assemble the ITX9600.
This inversion table is one of the best sellers, and is the table that many customers turn to when shopping for inversion tables. It has received over 3,100 reviews on Amazon with an average rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars, certainly an excellent score for such a frequently bought item.
Nearly all customers who had feedback about this product mentioned its durability and excellent results with back pain and joint ache. The few lower rated remarks seemed to have been written by heavier customers who felt that the table felt somewhat “unstable” and “flimsy” at times.
Overall, if you are looking for a simple inversion table without all the additional stuff that some of the other tables offer, and with a relatively low price point, then the Innova ITX9600 Heavy Duty Inversion Therapy Table is definitely a great choice for you. However, if you exceed the weight limitations or height limitations, or are looking for some extras that come alongside your inversion table, then perhaps there is another table on our list that might suit your needs.
2. IRONMAN Gravity 4000 Inversion Table
Unlike the ITX9600, the IRONMAN Gravity 4000 inversion table has a few more bells and whistles when it comes to accessories. The table is designed with comfort in mind, so expect to see a double stitched vinyl back rest with memory foam underneath which offers superior cushioning for your back. In addition to an already comfortable padding, the Gravity 4000 also comes with a lumbar pillow which is fully removable and can be used as needed.
The thing that separates this inversion table from many others is its weight capacity. In most cases, you can expect an inversion table to be able to withstand about 300 pounds of weight, but the IRONMAN Gravity 4000 is capable of withstanding up to 350 pounds.
Because of this increased weight capacity design, this table comes equipped with a heavy-duty tubular steel frame which is made to provide ultimate stability and durability. The frame is also coated with an anti-scratch finish to ensure that your inversion table will last a long time no matter how frequently you use it. The Gravity 4000 is also well known for its extra wide design to accommodate all shapes and sizes.
Most traditional inversion tables use a foam roller in combination with ankle supports to hold your feet in place when you invert your body. However, IRONMAN took it a step further and decided to eliminate the sometimes uncomfortable foam roller and introduce an ergonomically designed ankle cushion in combination with an ergonomically designed ankle clamp. The clamp can be easily reached and adjusted with the easy-to-reach Palm-Activated adjustable ratchet type locking system, making securing your ankles a simple and easy step in your inversion routine.
The IRONMAN Gravity 4000 inversion table is designed for people up to 6 feet and 6 inches in height. Although most tables have an adjustable head rest, IRONMAN decided to make both the back rest and head rest into a single and solid section. Doing this eliminates the need to adjust the head rest and introduces more stability and sturdiness. Height can be adjusted near the ankle support system by sliding the bottom part of the inversion table to your desired height.
When using the IRONMAN Gravity 4000, you can rest at ease knowing that the whole table is supported by non-skid floor stabilizers which will ensure that your table stays in one spot and offers the highest amount of stability possible. Additionally, this inversion table comes with extra-long safety handles which are covered with easy to grip foam designed for you to be able to return to your upright position with ease and comfort.
Overall, this is an excellent inversion table. The addition of memory foam for excellent support, the ergonomically designed ankle support, and the ankle clamp makes this a very well built inversion table that separates it from most other tables out there.
Although the dimensions of this table are somewhat larger than others, and even when in the folded state it still takes up a relatively large amount of room, this is perfectly acceptable and understandable when taking into account the increased weight capacity of this table and its wide design.
With over 3,000 reviews on Amazon and an average score rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars, this table is certainly an excellent choice. The majority of the reviews we looked at all raved about how easy it was to assemble this product and how sturdy it was while being used. The lower end reviews were generally written about infrequent incidents with the release button of the ankle clamp locking mechanism and the force needed to successfully press the button in and release the clamp.
The price of this inversion table is a bit higher than the above mentioned ITX9600, but we fully understand where this price difference is coming from, and we hope you do as well. You can expect to see the IRONMAN Gravity 4000 listed for about $199 and $225 if you choose the option with an equipment mat. This is an excellent table which will certainly last a very long time.
If you plan on using your inversion table frequently and need something with higher weight capacity, or perhaps a bit wider than other traditional inversion tables, then this is one of the best options for you. Just keep one thing in mind: this inversion table is somewhat larger than other tables on the market.
3. Teeter EP-560 LTD Inversion Table
Our list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning at least one Teeter product. The EP-560 LTD is all about getting your spine decompressed as effectively as possible and reducing your overall back pain with comfort and versatility in mind. Teeter is a company that has been in the inversion table business for a long time.
One of their first inversion tables hit the market in 1982, and they have become one of the most recognized and well known inversion table companies ever since. With over three decades of constant production and improvements, Teeter is able to offer some of the best inversion tables on the market.
The EP-560 LTD is a remarkable inversion table with plenty of different options for any user. This table has the weight limit of 300 pounds and is designed to be used by people between 4 feet 8 inches and 6 feet 6 inches in height. While this isn’t the highest weight capacity withstanding table out there, most people state that it is extremely sturdy and very well designed for optimal stability.
Teeter decided to incorporate Acupressure Nodes with their inversion table. These nodes come in four different sizes and can be inserted into designated areas along the ComfortTrak bed of the EP-560 to help with adding additional pressure onto supporting muscles along the spine, which promotes additional healing.
Furthermore, this inversion table also comes with a lumbar bridge, which is used to improve decompression of the spine significantly and to provide additional support to help focus traction on the lower back. Both of these accessories take spinal decompression to the next level by not only helping you reduce the stress on your spine through the use of gravity but also focusing on localizing decompression and relaxing muscles of the spine.
Most inversion tables use cushioned or padded back support surfaces to offer comfort, but Teeter decided to focus on a table bed designed to flex with the user. The EP-560 LTD features an easy to clean, smooth, and durable surface, which is able to accommodate every user with comfort and optimal decompression.
Unlike other inversion tables, the EP-560 has a bed that can flex with its users as they stretch and move throughout their inversion routine. This offers the ability to perform a variety of different exercises while inverted to further increase your rate of spinal decompression. Additionally, this inversion table features a fully removable head pillow to help you achieve the comfort level you are interested in.
Countless years in the business allowed Teeter to develop one of the most perfect ankles supports ever patented. The Ergo-Embrace supports are designed with your comfort in mind. Each ankle support has ergonomically shaped foam specifically designed to reduce pressure on your ankles whenever you invert your body while keeping you securely in place.
As you secure your ankles and begin to invert, you will be pleased to find out that Teeter also decided to include grip and stretch handholds to help you not only invert your body with ease but also to help you stretch and decompress seamlessly.
The EP-560 LTD is designed with balance in mind, and inverting your body is as simple as raising your hands above your head to shift the weight and thus easily invert. There are additional options to secure your inversion. Pre-set rotation options let you to set the inversion to a preset location, which allows you to perform inverted exercises and stretches without worrying about holding your inversion in place.
Those of you who are inclined to perform abdominal exercises or other additional exercise designed to help you tone and shape your body will certainly benefit from this Pre-Set Rotation Option.
The EP-560 LTD is extremely easy to assemble. In fact, most of the table, we would say about 90%, is already pre-assembled for you when you receive it after purchase. All you have to do is follow a few easy instructions and finish setting up your brand new inversion table, which shouldn’t take you more than about 30 minutes. Although Teeter does state that this can be done in about 13 minutes, we suggest you take things slow.
Because the EP-560 LTD is built out of pretty sturdy materials, it is a somewhat heavy inversion table, generally about 65 pounds in weight or so. However, it is also designed to be folded away and easily placed behind a door or inside of your closet in under a minute. And in case you were wondering, this inversion table does come with a warranty. The table comes with a 5 year full warranty, which is one of the best ones offered among inversion table manufacturers.
Overall, this is definitely one of the best inversions tables you can lay your eyes on. With a company that has been building quality products since 1980 and has a remarkable amount of loyal customers, you can’t go wrong with buying an EP-560 LTD. There are over 1,000 reviews about this product on Amazon and the average rating is roughly 4.6 out of 5 stars, making it a pretty impressive product.
The majority of reviews we looked at stated that this inversion table was extremely comfortable and very sturdy. The only negative feedback we noticed was regarding the ankle cups, which weren’t as comfortable as expected and somewhat difficult to lock in place. After some research, we noticed that Teeter offers an additional accessory to make securing your ankles simpler and easier, although it does cost extra to purchase this clamp accessory.
The price is definitely on the high end. Expect to pay around $352 for the EP-560 LTD if you plan to buy it from your favorite online retailer. Although it might seem somewhat steep when compared to other similar products, we think that this is still an excellent investment.
The additional accessories and meticulous design by a company that has been in business for over three decades) plenty of time to perfect their inversion table) makes this price perfectly acceptable in our opinion. Pair all of this with the full 5 year warranty and you’ve got yourself an inversion table that will last a lifetime. Best of all you can store it nearly anywhere.
Best Inversion Tables Final Words
Each inversion table is different in its own way. Some are designed for infrequent inversions while others are designed to be used every day for a long amount of time.
Choosing the right table is completely dependent on what you are looking to gain from an inversion table. Are you searching for something that will simply flip you upside down for a few minutes per day, or are you looking for something that is designed to do as much as possible to decompress your spine and relieve your back ache? Either choice is completely up to you.
Before you decide on purchasing an inversion table and going down the inversion therapy route, we strongly suggest you consult with your doctor. While most people will benefit in many different ways from using an inversion table, there are some situations in which you should stay away from inversion therapy. Although you know your body best, we urge you to get advice from your doctor before making an investment and possibly regretting it.