Benefits Of Inversion Tables: Neck, Back, Sciatic & Hip Pain

Last Updated on December 27, 2023 by Richard

Richard Says: Every adult needs at least one of the many benefits of inversion tables.

Either to prevent, or to stop, the pains caused by your spine being out of alignment or compressed by gravity.

“Not me!” you say? Do you sit at a desk all day? How is your posture while you sit? I thought so.

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When you are just standing, there is 100 mmHg of pressure on your spinal discs. [1]

The pressure increases to 140 mmHg when you sit. That pressure is caused by gravity and the weight of your body.

However, one of the benefits of inversion tables is that it reduces that pressure to just 40 mmHg. [1] Which permits muscle spasm pain relief. It also can relieve the pressure that causes pinched nerve pain.

Additionally, decreased spinal pressure permits greater blood flow. Which results in optimum healing of the spine.

Better yet, stretching your spine prevents or treats a slipped disc (herniated or disc prolapse) & spinal stenosis. Both of which cause back pain and leg pains.

Another type of prolapse is that of the internal organs which causes all kinds of unmentionable illnesses. The prevention and treatment of prolapse symptoms is just another of the many benefits of inversion tables.

Article written by Dr. Helcio Ferreira. Comments (in green) by Richard Quick.

Benefits Of Inversion Tables For Home use

The inversion table is a highly effective method to relieve back pain and muscle rehabilitation. It is also an effective method to reverse the adverse effects of gravity on the body.

Gravity contributes to significant circulation problems, loss of height, prolapses, and generally degenerating the functioning of the body.

The inversion table is currently a natural traction alternative that uses bodyweight combined with gravity to decompress affected joints. [1]

While the body is rotated and suspended, the force of gravity applies traction. Resulting in a custom stretch, bringing space between the vertebrae. Which relieves pressure on the intervertebral spaces and on the nerve roots of the spine.

Less pressure means less pain in the cervical and lumbar areas.

The inversion table offers a stretching and exercise system that helps delay or reverse the harmful compression of the body by gravity.

The Origin of The Inversion Table: Decompressive Therapy

Inversion therapy is based on the idea that placing the body in an inverted position to the usual one allows reducing the bad postures acquired.

Firstly, due to the position that gravity exerts on the body, and secondly, for other reasons. Such as sedentary lifestyle, the over-exertion of the upper or lower spine, or due to bone pathologies in its early stages.

This therapy dates back to the period of classical Greece, and also taken up in different periods of history by different cultures.

It was in the most recent era, beginning in 1960, when inversion therapy began to become fashionable among doctors and fitness centers.

All of which was driven by physics doctor Robert Manatt Martin.

Martin states that there are 6 common positions that people normally adopt due to the effect of gravity. He also states that there are 6 different positions that should be taken to alleviate the effects of gravity on the spine and muscles.

The inversion table is an excellent tool that will help you perform the postures indicated for decompression and the relief of the effects of gravity.

The Inversion Table Helps Relieve Stress and Muscle Tension

Just being overweight, and adulthood, can change the disposition of muscles and organs.

For example, with the aging of the body, internal organs, kidneys, stomach, intestines tend to prolapse (slide out of place).

However, the inversion method is highly effective in decongesting those internal organs, and the problems caused by their having shifted within the body.

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Digestion and waste disposal problems are also common symptoms of the prolapsed organs. The inversion table helps to reorganize the position of the organs into their correct place in the body. Thus, relieving the symptoms.

For this reason, inversion therapy is gaining more and more adherents for all the benefits provided to health.

It is a natural way to mitigate back pain, low back pain, improve blood circulation, reduce tension, and body stress. All of this is possible, since it decreases the negative effects that gravity creates within the body. [1] [2]

The inversion method facilitates tissue irrigation (with fresh blood), increasing oxygenation in all organs.

Benefits Of Inversion Tables

  • Reduction of back pain and better body posture because it reduces vertebral compression.
  • Stress relief
  • Relief of hip pains
  • Relief for spondylolisthesis and herniated discs
  • Stimulates circulation and relieves varicose veins
  • Height recovery lost over the years.
  • Increased blood flow, increasing cerebral oxygenation, thus activating the rejuvenation and revitalization of cells.
  • Activation of blood circulation in the scalp, which prevents hair loss

The inversion table offers an excellent experience for users with lower back pain, (cervical) neck pain, and stress relief. Inversion traction also increases blood flow and cerebral oxygenation.

The benefits of the inversion traction method offer rejuvenating effects throughout the body. Providing health benefits far beyond reducing back pain.

Considerations Before Buying An Inversion Table

Before beginning the inversion therapy to stay healthy, you should know some points before buying the inversion table, such as:

Weight capacity

Due to the material used to make the inversion tables, they have a maximum weight capacity, usually 264 lb. (120 kg).

Some inversion tables can handle 350 lbs (158.7 kg) 

Manufacturing materials

You must verify that the manufacturing materials are of high quality for your safety and comfort. It is advisable to install a non-slip base on the table support.

Security measures

The inversion table must include support for feet and safety belts, to avoid accidents during suspension. These elements must be completely convenient to use so as not to interfere with the training.

During the first sessions, you may notice some discomfort, but then you can get used to it.

Always use safety straps to keep your mind completely focused on the exercises. In the first sessions of inversion therapy, it is essential to practice under the supervision of someone due to the risk of dizziness.

Adjustment of the inversion system

You must ensure that the table has preset inversion adjustments, which are usually 20, 40, 60, and 180 degrees. These positions must be easily changed, and the procedure must be described in the user manual. Some inversion tables can do it automatically.

Comfort and ergonomics

The base must be entirely ergonomic to offer greater support during the exercise day and avoid the risk of muscle injuries.

Height adjustment

The height of the board must be fully adjustable to adapt to your body. In this way, you can control the center of gravity.

Easy and convenient to store

The table should be easy and convenient to store and move anywhere.

Inversion Table For Rehabilitation

If you suffer back pain, sciatic pain, stress, and want to recover mobility and improve your postural habits, the inversion table will be your great ally.

The inversion table allows the body to be tilted from 180º until the desired angle is reached gradually and remains to lie head downward for as long as necessary. Depending on the effects that are intended to be achieved.

The inversion table facilitates the traction of the spine, relieving or eliminating the load on the back. The inversion table is recommended uniquely to mitigate lower back pain. [3]

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This method is also useful to relieve the pain caused by a herniated disc. The relief experienced by the patient; in this case, is dependent on the relaxation of the back muscles during the inversion session. [4]

In many situations, the inversion table is also used for other disorders. For example, to reduce the effects of gravity on the physical body structure, and in particular, on the spine.

The inversion exercises guarantee an elongation of the back, an improvement in posture, and a reduction in the thickness reduction of the intervertebral discs.

Also, the inversion table is recommended to improve the sense of direction and balance, for the development of perception sensors and hearing channels.

Increased blood flow to all tissues can also benefit the scalp, decreasing hair loss.

Considerations Before Using The Inversion Table

The inversion table is not a device for use by any person, or for any pathological situation. Before using inversion therapy, it is essential to ensure that there is no pathology that contradicts its use.

An inversion table is contraindicated for patients suffering from cardiac pathologies.

The inverted position causes an increase in the:

  • Frequency of heartbeat
  • Cardiac output
  • Peripheral vascular resistance
  • Venous return
  • Oxygen consumption by the myocardium

All of which creates excessive stress to the cardiovascular system.

How To Use The Table?

  • Find your balance point until you reach horizontality
  • The key is knowing how to use your arms. You have to move your arms back or forward to get the horizontal position; this is the most important exercise during the first days.
  • Continue with the slight movement of the arms back until you get a slight downward inclination of the board. In this position, the head is slightly below the feet.
  • As you get used to it, start swinging by moving your arms back and forth.
  • Once you have learned the balancing, you can try more inversion.


  • Never use the inversion table after eating or drinking. For the prevention of possible vomiting.
  • Always make sure you have your ankles securely fastened before using it.
  • Do not use it just before bedtime.
  • Try using the table for at least 5 minutes every day. Two sessions will be better than one.

Effect of the inversion table on the body

An inversion table is an appropriate option to correct posture and relieve muscular discomfort in the spine. However, beyond these simple benefits, these methods are popular among professionals and athletes, as a therapeutic method that brings many benefits to the body. [6]

Although its use is not usual, inversion tables are an alternative to improve muscle ailments, and poor posture. Inversion tables can also be used for exercise routines that are focused on the abdominal area.

Its use is recommended for being practical, versatile, and providing benefits through gravitational inversion. Such as, relaxing muscles, and nerves.

Relief of Back Pain and Sciatic Pain

The inversion table helps to relieve back pain and sciatic pain completely.

The exercise is similar to stretching the spine and reducing the pressure on the discs. Resulting in less compression of the spine.

It is the compression of the spine, which may have caused the pinched nerves, and the resulting pain. [4]

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Joint Pressure Relief

After a day of physical training, the joints may have suffered tension, especially in high impact training. The inversion tables provide important benefits by stretching and relieving muscles, and releasing joint pressure.

It also corrects minor misalignments caused by unilateral activities such as golf.

Lymphatic System

The inversion of the body helps eliminate waste from the lymphatic system, such as lactic acid or other waste that can cause pain.

Increase Blood Flow To Organs

The inversion table helps the process of blood circulation, helps decongest the organs, and stimulates the lymphatic system. It causes the blood and lymph fluid flow to increase, thus helping to eliminate waste.

Will An Inversion Table Help You To Keep Your Height or To Grow Taller?

During the day, the effect of gravity can decrease body height by up to 3%. This is caused by spinal compression. However, the inversion prevents this process by stretching the spine. [5]

Richard says: It is common knowledge that people get shorter as they get older. Inversion therapy can restore most or all of that lost height. However, you would not become taller than you were during your youth.

Stimulates Muscle Tone

The inverted position helps to develop muscle strength in the muscles of the lower back and abdominal area. Without generating pressure on the spine. This inverted position contributes to gaining strength and increasing muscle tone.

Correct Posture

One of the main benefits of this element is that it helps correct the alignment of the spine. This is accomplished through a release of tension in the muscles, which allows adopting more appropriate postures.

Richard says: I have briefly seen studies that have used an inversion table for scoliosis treatment. Such people can receive much improvement in their condition, and should consult with their doctor.

Decrease Neck and Back Pain

With an inversion table, you can reduce muscle discomfort in the neck and back, because gravitational inversion helps reduce the pressure on the discs, ligaments, and nerve roots.

Muscle Relaxation

Muscle relaxation provides many benefits for the body. Every day, more athletes and professionals use the inversion table for muscle recovery, avoid muscle contractures, and relieve lumbar and cervical pain.

Benefits of Inversion Tables: Prevents Vertebral Compression

With a gravitational inversion table, it is possible to achieve a stretch in the spine. As a consequence, the spaces between the vertebrae and increased blood flow are increased.

Decompression of the spine is one of the major benefits of inversion tables. Without the decompression, the muscles won’t relax and the spine would not realign. Both of which are needed to stop the pain.

Increase Tissue Oxygenation

The inversion of the body helps increase blood circulation, improves blood pumping, and venous return. This advantage can provide important benefits in the treatment of varicose veins and tissue oxygenation.

Increased Mental Activity

Regular use of the inversion table can help better brain activity, because the inverted posture of the body promotes cerebral oxygenation.

Decrease Stress Due To Muscle Tension

Muscle or joint tension can raise stress and anxiety levels in the body.

According to some experimental studies, through a gravitational inversion table, it is possible to reduce this tension in the muscles and joints. Thus, giving the user a pleasant and relaxing sensation, after a couple of minutes in an inverse position.

Increase Muscle Strength and Endurance

The effects of rehabilitation and therapy provide important health benefits. Due to this effect, it is possible to increase muscle tone and strength in the abdominal area.

Richard’s Conclusions On The Benefits Of Inversion Tables

As I write this, I am seriously considering which inversion table to get for myself.

That is because I now spend 8-12 hours per day at my computer. I get up often and stretch, or go for a walk, but it isn’t enough.

My butt still gets numb and my shoulder muscles tighten up. Honestly, my posture is pretty bad much of the time.

When I said that every adult needs the pain relief benefits of inversion tables, I meant it, because I’m no exception.

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Also, the air cushioned ankle holders don’t pinch your ankles.



2. A Systematic Review of the Effects of Exercise and Physical Activity on Non-Specific Chronic Low Back Pain

3. The effect of inversion traction on pain sensation, lumbar flexibility and trunk muscles strength in patients with chronic low back pain

4. High-Force Versus Low-Force Lumbar Traction in Acute Lumbar Sciatica Due to Disc Herniation: A Preliminary Randomized Trial.

5. Immediate changes in spinal height and pain after aquatic vertical traction in patients with persistent low back symptoms: a crossover clinical trial.

6. Inversion therapy: a study of physiological effects

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Benefits Of Inversion Tables: Neck, Back, Sciatic & Hip Pain
Article Name
Benefits Of Inversion Tables: Neck, Back, Sciatic & Hip Pain
Injuries, illnesses and just plain old gravity causes the spine to be damaged and to shrink. All of which causes pain. One of the main benefits of inversion tables is the decompression of the spinal column, which reduces pain and permits the healing of numerous illnesses.
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Full Stride Health
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