How to Choose the Best Acupressure Mat?
Table of Contents
Top Best Acupressure Mats Based on Reviews and Pirce
What is Acupressure Mat?
Acupressure is an age-old practice of the Chinese people that work with the pressure points of the body. These pressure points can be massaged so that they interact with the energy pathways in the body. Recently, it has gained popularity amongst other cultures, especially for its professed health benefits. You can even do them at home without the need for a professional.
Based on this principle, acupressure mats have small, sharp points that are arranged to hit each of those pressure points in your body when you lie down or walk on them. The idea of acupressure mats seems foreign to many, and some equate it to the ‘bed of nails,’ but they are not the same thing.
Does Acupressure Mat Really Work?
How Does Acupressure Mats Work?
Acupressure is concerned with stimulating your pressure points, so you have to use the mat the correct way, or you won’t get your desired results. It is recommended that you always use the mat on exposed skin, but if you’re a beginner, you can start with some light clothing until you get used to it. The acupressure mat is supposed to cause a release in endorphins when it is used so that you can try transition to bare skin after some time for the best results.
How to Use Acupressure Mats?
The idea of lying down on a bed of spikes (or nails) doesn’t appeal to a lot of people, and it is understandable. However, the concept of acupressure sounds more intimidating than it is.
Acupressure mats have small plastic spikes that are attached to a mat which is made of a soft and comfortable material. The spikes have blunt tips, so there is no fear of piercing your skin, and most of the initial discomfort eases up after you get up.
- For Back or Neck
If you have back or neck pain symptoms, you should find a suitable position on your mat and lie down in place for about 20 to 30 minutes. Feel free to move around until you get a comfortable position.
- For Feet and Hand
For feet and hand aches, stand on the mat with one foot at a time for a few minutes, and then both feet afterward for one more minute. Repeat the process for hands too.
- Therapy Timing
Also, keep in mind that if you want an acupressure mat for increasing your energy levels, you shouldn’t lie on it for more than 20 minutes because anything longer will cause you to relax instead.
There is no particular position you need to take while using an acupressure mat apart from sitting, lying, or standing on the mat for about 20 to 30 minutes at a stretch per day. You can use it consistently for about two weeks or more, depending on your symptoms. If you have pain in your feet or neck, you can get an acupressure pillow, in addition to your acupressure mat.
However, some people have adverse reactions to the mat, so you shouldn’t keep using the mat if it causes you any prolonged pain or if it makes your symptoms worse. Also, too much use can cause adverse side effects like soreness, tiredness, and in some cases, headaches.
Top Health Benefits of Acupressure Mats
There are many supposed benefits of the acupressure mat, some of which have been confirmed to be true. However, acupressure mats have to be used correctly and for the required amount of time to avoid getting any adverse side effects. Health benefits of acupressure mats include:
- Helps with pain relief
Studies have shown that lying on an acupressure mat for about 10 minutes per session can significantly reduce pain, including neck pains, lower back pains, and foot pains. Even athletes can benefit from them as they can act as immediate pain relief for sports injuries.
- Helps with insomnia
One of the most popular uses for acupressure mats is to help with lack of sleep. Acupressure triggers the points in your body that help to relax and induce sleep. You can also use acupressure to improve the quality of your sleepover time.
- Boosts mental health
Acupressure helps to reduce some mental challenges like depression, anxiety, and stress. This claim is backed up by some studies which found a significant reduction of these symptoms among patients that use acupressure at least three times a week for a few weeks.
- Aids digestion
Acupressure helps to improve bowel movement and constipation.
- Helps with chronic migraines
A lot of acupressure users found a significant improvement in their migraine symptoms while using acupressure. According to a 2010 study, acupressure may be more effective in the treatment of migraines than muscle relaxant therapy.
- Brings down high blood pressure
Acupressure has been found to lower blood pressure for a short period – up to 30 minutes at a time. It is an effective remedy, though short-term.
- Increases energy
Based on the results of an experimental study, acupressure was found to help with the feeling of fatigue in patients. They also reported an increase in their energy levels.
6 Factors to Know Before Buying Acupressure Mats
The material used to make an acupressure mat greatly impacts the experience you have on the mat. Because the mat is made to stab your body, a material that is too hard may be too uncomfortable, especially if you don’t wear clothes when laying on it. Also, someone with sensitive skin would prefer more pliant material.
Another thing to note is that different materials give different results. Most mats have plastic spikes, but the mats have a wide range of materials to choose from.
For example, if you have chronic back pains, a mat made with soft foam or soft neoprene will give you the best results. However, the material used in making the mat can make it more expensive.
You also need to consider for mats that are very well made so that they last longer. Usually, the soft but firm mats give you better support and make you feel better, but they cost more than those made of cheaper materials. A mid-range mat may be the best option for you to save money and also get good quality.
5. Extra Features
You can buy individual mats or an acupressure set that contains a pillow, extra mat, or acupressure balls. Buying them this way may help you save money, especially if you need all these products.
They may cost more if purchased separately, but buying these sets cost less. These extra features tend to make them more expensive, so make sure you need them before purchasing a set.
Not all mats have the same design or spike placements. Some of them have more concentrated areas of spikes than others, and they have different effects on the body. The more the number of spikes in an area, the more painful the acupressure experience is.
Also, the distribution of the spikes can affect your results. Always make sure you know what results you need from an acupressure mat and match that to how many spikes you need for the best results.
If you have specialized pains, then you may only need a small acupressure mat. However, big acupressure mats are perfect if you want to lay your whole body on it. Small acupressure mats can be used to target specific areas, and they are perfect for travel.
So, you can decide to buy a big mat for home use and a small one for travel. An acupressure pillow can help increase the size of the mat. You have to consider your needs before you buy any acupressure mat.
Proper storage of your acupressure mat is vital, which is why you need to but a mat that you can easily store. Small mats are usually easier to store and carry around, especially if you don’t have a large enough space. You can stick to a medium-sized mat or one that is similar in size to your yoga mat.
1. Differences Between Acupuncture and Acupressure
A lot of people mix up these two words, but they are different from each other. They both work under the same principles of accessing the pressure points and energy pathways in the body, but they have different requirements and practices.
Acupressure, as the name implies, deals with applying pressure to the various pressure points, also known as acupoints, of the body. On the other hand, acupuncture involves using extremely thin needles to stimulate the pressure points. They have similarities in beliefs and benefits, but they are very different aspects of Chinese traditional medicine.
Acupressure mats have several benefits that you can enjoy without being sick. You can use them for general relaxation, to clear your mind, or to help you feel better. Acupressure is a non-invasive procedure that you can do on your own, and acupressure mats make it easier for you to that.
They are also a great natural replacement for some pills, which makes them good for you. All you have to do is lie down to access all the great benefits of acupressure. With the factors listed in this article, finding the best acupressure mat for you won’t be a hard decision at all.