Glossary of Massage Chair Terms

The Massage Chair Experts are here to provide you with the information you need to help with your decision for your purchase. We do the research for you, so you do not have to. Massage chairs can be confusing and finding the right chair can be a daunting task, so we bring you Glossary of Massage Chair Terms to help clear some confusion. If you still have questions, feel free to ask one of our experts.


Acupressure is a massage technique that delivers pinpoint pressure to a range of Acupoints across the body. The fingers are the primary tools in this therapy.

Acupuncture Point or Acupoint

Acupoints range in the hundreds and are believed to be points that have a direct connection to specific systems in the body. They can be found along the bodies Meridian (see Meridian) and are used in Acupressure and Acupuncture.

Airbag Compression System

Airbag Massage Systems are used to mimic deep tissue Swedish massage. They do this by inflating and deflating in a variety of methods and speeds, essentially compressing and manipulating the muscles and connective tissue. They can also work independently or in unison.

Automated Programs (Pre-Programmed)

Automated Programs are a preset arrangement of massage techniques that come programmed into a massage chair. They are grouped together by style, but can also be customized to offer push button therapy based on someone's preferences.

Body Scan Technology

Body Scan uses a peripheral system to scan the body's heart rate, posture, and fatigued or tense areas. This system is used to employ a custom massage or make minor adjustments based on the users bio feedback.

Clapping Technique

The Clapping Technique incorporates a cupped hand that applies sharp quick bursts of alternating pressure to the body.

Compression Technique

The Compression Technique applies a very firm squeezing and sometimes rubbing motion to specific parts of the body. Massage chairs have air compression systems that have airbags strategically placed that provide a compression massage to your body.

Deep Pressure Massage

Deep Pressure Massage is a therapy that applies strong sustained pressure across large groups of muscles primarily in a full-body session.

Deep Tissue Massage

Deep Tissue Massage delivers therapy to both superficial and deep level muscles as well as connective tissue. This technique focuses on specific problem areas as opposed to full-body therapy.

Hawaiian Massage Technique

The Hawaiian Massage Technique uses a swaying and gentle rubbing therapy across the back.

Heat Therapy

Heat Therapy is a set of built in heaters that warm, loosen, and prepare the body for massage therapy. They are typically placed in the upper and lower back, as well as the feet.

Kneading Massage Technique

Kneading Massage uses the thumb and forefingers in a pinching method (think of someone kneading dough), applying pressure to stretch and elongate the muscles.

Massage Chair Motor

Massage Chairs have internal motors that provide different functions in the chair. There are Rotary Motors, Piston Motors, and Vibration Motors. Rotary Motors control the massage rollers and the kneading and tapping functions. Piston Motors control the leg rest and recline functions, and Vibration Motors control the vibrating movements.

Massage Therapy

Massage Therapy is comprised of several techniques that manipulate superficial and deep layers of muscle and connective tissue. These are performed to enhance muscle function, help aid the body's healing process, promote relaxation, and provide a general sense of well-being.


The Meridian in Chinese Medicine is believed to be paths in which life-energy flows through the body. This is also known as "Qi or chi." Acupressure and Acupuncture Therapy is based around targeting specific areas that are located along the Meridian.


Reflexology is a therapy that applies physical pressure to the feet, hands, and ears. These points are believed be connected to systems throughout the body, providing therapy to them as well.


The Massage Roller is a circle shaped robotic component that runs vertically along the upper and lower back. This is used to stretch and warm the back for deeper levels of massage.

Shiatsu Massage

Shiatsu Massage is a Japanese therapy that incorporates the thumbs, fingers, and palms in applying pressure as well as stretching to the body.

Swedish Massage

Swedish Massage is a varied therapy that includes multiple styles and stretches. This applies kneading, long strokes, and friction to different muscles as well as joints.

Tapping Technique

The Tapping Technique applies deep tissue massage by emulating fists tapping on the back and shoulders muscles.


Vibration gives a balanced shaking effect that can alternate in muscle penetration.

Zero Gravity

Zero Gravity is a neutral body posture that reclines the body and elevates the feet above the heart. It was developed by NASA and has been scientifically proven to put a person into a heightened state of relaxation and well-being.