Built with breathable and comfortable foam of premium quality. Works as a posture corrector and as pain treatment. Relieves herniated disc and Sciatica nerve pain and provides lumbar support. Adjustable to 3 heights for use on an office chair, wheelchair, or seat pillow. Cushion is washable.
Reviewers complained that it was quite challenging to assemble because of how strong the plastic was.
Immediate positive results reported. 3 different arch settings. Acupressure nodes for muscular relief.
Triggers back spasms in some users. Painful acupressure nodes. Plastic components can break unexpectedly.
Folding design makes this device ideal for travel. Provides good herniated disc relief. Incorporates memory foam for additional comfort. Provides more cushioning than hard plastic models.
Softer construction than expected. Does not strap into all chair types. Support is variable.
Designed with plastic "needles" to stimulate, massage, and relieve pain. Works well for lumbar support and as a posture corrector. Comes with setup instructions and a 3-gear adjustment system for more comfortability. You can use it on a chair, car seat, or bed.
Not easy to assemble, and plastic is quite sensitive to heat.
Lightweight and easy to install. Enhanced with magnetic-plastic acupressure points. Comes with an upgraded silicone cushion. Promotes general pain relief and relief for sciatica. You can toggle this through 3 levels. Contains a chair strap for lumbar support.
Users noted that the rubber strip along the middle is weak, and it keeps detaching.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Do you suffer from back pain? Whether your discomfort stems from an injury, poor posture, or a degenerative problem, an orthopedic back stretcher may help.
An orthopedic back stretcher is a simple arched device you can use at home to stretch your back muscles and spine. Simply place the stretcher on the floor or another sturdy surface and lie back on it. Your spine will elongate as you recline, creating space between the vertebrae and taking pressure off your spinal discs.
Sufferers often find relief when they perform two short stretching sessions per day. Most healthy people can use a back stretcher without consulting their doctor first, but if you are pregnant or have osteoporosis, spinal stenosis, or another diagnosis that concerns you, seek medical approval before engaging in this type of exercise.
If you’re intrigued by the thought of attaining easy back relief at home, you’re not alone. These affordable devices have gained considerable traction in the home health field.
Most back stretchers currently available can be used on the lower, middle, or upper back, allowing you to address your pain at its source. You choose where to place the stretcher.
The FDA does not regulate the production of back stretchers, so if you get one without a doctor’s guidance, you do so at your own risk. That said, people with the following health problems may find relief with a back stretcher.
Some sellers proclaim that their product is “FDA approved.” Even so, when you read the fine print, you may notice that the FDA does not actually validate the health benefit claims made by the company.
Most orthopedic back stretchers adhere to one of two designs. The most common design involves two pieces: a flat, rigid base and a hard, flexible band that stretches over the base to form a rainbow-like arch. The flexible band may or may not be padded. In some cases, the pad is removable. (A large portion of users appreciate the padded surface, but a few prefer something harder.)
Perhaps the most appealing feature of the two-piece design is adjustability. Because the overarching piece is flexible, it can be bent and tucked into one of several slots in the base. This affects your degree of stretch. For example, one set of slots will make the arch steeper and your stretch deeper; another set of slots will flatten the arch for a gentler stretch.
The second most common design consists of just one piece. Often made of foam, this piece resembles a half cylinder. The arch angle cannot be adjusted on this type of back stretcher, but because it’s made of foam, it may have nodules for added stimulation.
The piece that supports your back may be made of wood or plastic. It’s sturdy but not infallible, so check the weight limit. A smaller person may get by with a 200-pound weight limit, but a larger individual would be wise to get something with a weight limit of 300 pounds or more.
You might prefer a steep arch of around 50°, a shallow arch of around 15°, or something in between. Fortunately, there are customizable back stretchers that allow you to select your preferred arch angle. In our research, we found back stretchers with anywhere from three to five angle options. Not all products have this feature, however, so check the product specs before ordering.
Some back stretchers are covered with soft, rubbery pins or spikes that stimulate the body as you stretch. Sellers tout these products as tools for acupressure as well as stretch therapy. Mind you, the holistic practice of acupressure focuses on specific points on the body that are thought to release healing energy. A back stretcher with nodules on it may or may not hit these specific spots. Nevertheless, some users think it feels great, while others find it a bit uncomfortable.
While a moderate number of back stretchers have acupressure nodules, only a few have a massage function. If you’re interested in receiving a vibration-like massage while you stretch, give some thought to an orthopedic back stretcher with a massage function. These products require batteries, and some allow you to toggle between two or more intensities.
One-piece back stretchers obviously don’t need to be assembled, but if you opt for a multipiece stretcher, you’ll probably have to put it together when it arrives. There may be just two large parts or many small parts to assemble, depending on the product’s design.
Even if the assembly and use of your back stretcher seem straightforward, it never hurts to make sure you’re doing it right. After all, if you were to put your device together wrong or use it incorrectly, you could hurt yourself. Check online to see if there are any instructional videos for your particular product. Lots of companies provide them. If not, you may still be able to get the gist by watching a video about a similar product.
Most orthopedic back stretchers fall in the $20 to $40 range, with the average product costing about $30. That said, you could find a small, unpadded back stretcher made of plastic for closer to $12 if you wanted to. However, for a few dollars more, we think it’s worth it to invest in a sturdy back stretcher with the features (padding, acupressure nodules, adjustability) consumers tend to appreciate.
There are a few back stretchers that sell for more than $40. The extra expense probably isn’t necessary if you just want the basic stretch function. Some heated body massagers also provide a degree of stretch to your back, but these products tend to cost $100 or more.
Q. Is a back stretcher painful to use?
A. You may feel some pain the first few times you use your back stretcher. The key here is to exercise good judgment. You’re bound to feel pain in any stiff or sore body part that you stretch, but that pain should lessen over time. If the pain persists or worsens, see your physician.
Q. What is the difference between a back stretcher and a foam roller?
A. For starters, the two items look different. An orthopedic back stretcher is an arched wood or plastic platform with a rainbow shape, whereas a foam roller is a column of sturdy foam with a cylindrical shape. Perhaps the most important difference is the intended purpose of each. An orthopedic back stretcher is designed to lengthen and stretch the spine, whereas a foam roller is designed to massage and break up tension in the back while stimulating blood flow.
Q. Can an elderly person use a back stretcher?
A. If the person is in good physical condition, the answer may be yes. Keep in mind that one of the most effective ways to use a back stretcher is to lie with it on the floor. If you have trouble getting down on the floor, you could try using the back stretcher with a chair instead. Notably, anyone who has osteoporosis should not use a back stretcher unless under the guidance of a physician.