So what do they do, how you do go about both choosing the right one and using it correctly and safely? This guide will take you through every thing you need to know about inversion tables and show the best of them for this year.
The best inversion tables on the market in [year]
Innova Fitness ITX9600 is a high spec inversion table that wont break the bank. Price is not the only measure of quality this table features… Read More »
Health Mark Pro
The Health Mark Pro one of the safest back stretcher tables on the market, the Health Mark Pro includes… Read More »
Teeter Hang Ups EP-950
For sufferes of acute back pain finding the right inversion table can be a huge challenge, we think the Teeter Hang Ups may just have it all … Read More »
If you are looking for a simple, no frills table for inversion training then the Ironman may just be… Read More »
Teeter Hang-Ups Contour L5
If you are willing to pay a little more for top quality build quality and a huge range of features… Read More »
Teeter Hang-Ups EP560 Ltd
While this may be the entry level of the Teeter Range The EP560 this does not lack…. Read More »
A sweedish company with a huge reputation of producing professional level inversion tables, if you are setting up a clinic this is the one… Read More »
Like the other Ironman inversion table in our list this is another great value inversion table designed to … Read More »
Health Mark Pro Max
A true heavyweight in the market, if you are struggling with weight and need an inversion table that will safely hold over 600lbs… Read More »
Simple and effective, the Gaiam has taken a huge share of the inversion table market through innovation and a great price… Buy Now on Amazon»
How Inversion Tables are used to provide Inversion Therapy.
Humans evolved, uniquely in nature, to walk on our hind legs and upright. Virtually all other animals walk on four legs with their weight spread across each limb equally. Due to the pressures of walking upright our spine takes on a huge pressure every day that it has only recently evolved to do. All these pressures and strains can take a toll, compacting the cartilage and sometimes trapping nerve endings. This can lead to minor aches and pains or in the worst case a life time of chronic pain and a lack of mobility. By simply turning the forces on the spine upside down the pressure on the spine can be relieved and this can take away the pain it can also allow the body to strengthen muscles that are not normally worked when standing upright. This may be known as spinal decompression.
With the pressure removed from the spine you can explore different training options, core strength training often relies on inversion loading the core with the full weight of the torso.
Inversion therapy in the Home
Just a few years ago if you were wanting form of inversion therapy it would be normal to take a trip to the chiropractor, or see a specialist fitness trainer at the gym. This was always expensive and time consuming. With the new models coming on the market recently it is now possible to quickly and safely treat your self on your own inversion table in your own home. The advantages of this are huge, no waiting for appointments which can be excruciating if you are in pain. Plus inversion tables are not expensive, for the cost of just a couple of treatment sessions you can probably cover the cost of a mid level table.
What to look for in an inversion table?
Using an inversion table for the first time can be a disorientating experience. You will be hanging upside down, head first to the ground at a steep angle. Blood will move to your head and you may feel a little dizzy. The first two things you want to watch out for are how securely your feet are attached to the table, and how to recover to an upright position. Once in position you will want to look at the best features that fit your needs, whether that be to aid strength training, pain management or simply just comfort.
Inversion Table Safety
All inversion tables sold in large retailers will be safe to use, they will have been tested and produced in well controlled conditions. Where the differences come in is how they communicate a sense of safety to you the user. If you are new to inversion training then it is normal to be a little anxious the first few times you go over. How you actually feel will depend on the quality of the table, some may have a little more movement than others, some tables will hold your feet in a more comfortable way.
The materials used in the table will change the strength, they will also change the price. A steel table will be strong and heavy, able to support high weights however it will also be expensive. A plastic table will still be safe, yet it will flex and not feel as robust as the steel version however it will still be safe to use.
If you weigh less than 250lbs then you should be able to pick from any inversion table on the market. If you weigh more than this then you will need to consider more robust higher spec models to accommodate the extra weight. Normally with treadmills or exercise bikes we would say that if you are just a little over the recommended weight that you would still be safe to use the machine, it would just wear faster. With an inversion table we would not recommend exceeding the limits for the clear safety reasons.
For users up to 350lbs then you can consider the Ironman 3000 Inversion Table
There are a number of ways of attaching your ankles to the inversion table. The most common way, especially on lower end models is to slip them between a pair of foam covered bars that hold your feet securely in place. The big advantage of this technique is that it is very easy to insert the feet, and remove them at the end of the session. However this method may not feel as secure as a proper attachment.
Depending on how long you plan on spending using your inversion table you may wish to consider the quality of the material and padding used in its production. If its just a few minutes for some ab exercises then its probably less important that its very comfortable. If you are planning on spending an hour or so on the table then you may want to look at options with extra padding, or if you are in a warm place there are options with a mesh back support that will help keep you cool. Other features to consider are lumber supports that can be great for stretching the back out!
Comfort features are important to consider when you’re purchasing an inversion table since you will be spending some time in a relatively awkward position, especially as you get used to the inversion. The kind of padding and materials on the table will make a difference in your experience. Some tables offer memory foam or flexible beds to help cushion your spine. The ankle clamping mechanism in certain models is padded and comes with adjustable straps. A lumbar bridge insert can help you target your lower back for stretching. You might enjoy infrared heat or acupressure nodules for additional therapy options during your inverted time. Several inversion tables adjust so you can perform exercises on them as well.
Finding the right table for your needs will ensure that you get the most use from it, and can use it safely day in day out. So how do you actually use an inversion table? Here is our quick run down on getting the most from your table:
How to Use your Inversion Table
How complicated can it be? Clip your feet in and turn yourself over! Well lets just take a step back and look at each part step by step. Its important that you avoid serious injury or making any condition worse.
Read the manual
. This may sound simple, but many people miss this important step. Some tables are less intuitive than others, it can be difficult to phone for help if you have managed to trap yourself upside down.
What are your Goals: How you set up the table will vary depending on what you are looking to achieve. For core strength you may want to be flatter than for spinal decompression.
Be sure of the Height
: You will need to make sure that when you invert you are set up for the right height. Take a few seconds to ensure that your head is resting on the table and not hanging off. This can lead to the neck over stretching and lead to a whip lash type injury.
Set the angle:
You are now ready to decide at what angle will be best for your goals. Novice users may wish to experiment a little first with a low angle, and not going for a full upright movement straight away. Set the angle you are comfortable and feel safe at then build from there.
With the height and angle set its now time to secure your ankles to the table and prepare to invert. Always follow the instructions, wear shoes if required and double check the fitting before using the handles to lower your self down into position.
Relax and Breath:
As your head goes down your blood pressure will increase in your head. Your heart will have to change its rhythm to slow it down as it has less work sending blood to the brain. This can cause dizziness as your brain will think its getting to much oxygen and your breathing can slow down. To combat this you should relax and concentrate on breathing normally. Take slow deep breaths in your nose and out of your mouth. This will regulate the amount of oxygen and keep you feeling comfortable while you become used to your new position.
Engage and Stretch your muscles
: Now you are safely inverted and in control of your breathing its time to start making the most of the inversion table. If you have back pain this is the time to start relaxing, maybe perform some tissue massage with a tennis ball over sensitive areas of the back. As you are stretched out there will be slightly wider gaps between the vertebrae that will allow for deeper massage. You can also work your posture to ensure that all your joints are properly aligned. If strength is your goal inverted crunches, jackknives and side crunches are all excellent core strength building exercises.
Return and cool down:
After your workout its important to return slowly to the upright position, again due to the pressure changes take your time in sitting up and unlatching your feet. Wait a few seconds to ensure the blood is flowing to the brain with enough oxygen that you don’t feint. If you have ever stood up to fast and felt light headed this is the same thing, but more pronounced.
Final thoughts: There are two main safety guidelines. 1) Always contact a doctor before any change in your workouts including using inversion tables and 2) Never use an inversion table when alone in a house. Make sure there is someone about should you get into difficulty. Freeing yourself if stuck can be difficult!
The best inversion tables on the market in [year]
Inversion Table Reviews [year] Summary:
Any one of these tables will suit 90% of most peoples requirements. The main differences come down to price, appearance and how well they attach. Some products will be more transportable, others more comfortable for long term use. The point is there are very few terrible tables on the market, whether you are looking for pain treatment, or core strength building the same table can do the job well.