Inversion Therapy for Back Pain: Benefits, Devices and More

For decades, people have suffered from back pain, neck pain, and joint pain and the solutions available were oral medication or surgery. Over the last couple of years, more people have opted for natural options, such as inversion therapy, to treat these pains.

Inversion therapy is a natural remedy for back pain and neck pain. It involves suspending the body upside down so as to relieve upper, middle, or lower back pain by decompressing the spine.

Numerous physical therapists and chiropractors recommend this treatment method to patients suffering from scoliosis, herniated disks, and other back pain related discomforts. In the guide below, we cover some of the benefits, risks, and devices to use when inverting.

Tip: Your body will take a little bit of time to properly adjust to inverted positions. Start by hanging upside down for 1 minute, then push to 3 minutes, and then until your body fully adjusts to this process.

Are you ready to learn more?

Let’s dive in…

Inversion therapy benefits

  • Alleviates sciatic pain

The sciatic nerve runs across the back of the body; it runs from the lower spine, to the buttock, to the foot. Pain on the sciatic nerves ranges from a tingling sensation, to numbness, then to sheer pain.

This pain can be a result of:

  • Lumbar vertebrae slipping over one another
  • Pressure due to pregnancy
  • A herniated disk
  • Lumbar spinal stenosis
  • Muscles imbalance

Fortunately, the above pains can be relieved through using an inversion chair or table.

  • Reduces need for back surgery

For a long time, medical practitioners resorted to surgery to help relieve back pain. Unfortunately, for most patients, even after surgery, the pain does not completely subside.  Inversion therapy can help you to totally eliminate this pain.

A clinical study conducted by Newcastle University showed that sciatic nerve pain patients became completely pain-free when they practiced inversion techniques regularly.

  • Improves sleep


inversion therapy

Want to sleep like a baby? Get an inversion table or chair. It is a known fact that tense muscles deprive us of good sleep. When you inverse your body, you get rid of harmful toxins, increase your oxygen intake, and relax your muscles. This will in turn helps you to sleep faster and more soundly.

  • Reduces Scoliosis pain and corrects scoliosis

Scoliosis is a disease which causes the spine to form a “C” or “S” shape. This disease often occurs among young children. It is highly advisable to seek treatment while the children are still young.

When the children are still young, Scoliosis can be corrected naturally by using inversion techniques. The best thing is…

A child will find this treatment method fun and easy. But, before you hang your child upside down, please consult their doctor to get the green light.

Did you know: Inversion chairs and tables are not the only devices that can help relieve back pain?  Want to view another incredible solution?


  • Increases flexibility

Ever watched a baby suckle their toe? A baby’s flexibility is amazing; it’s so hard to imagine we were once that flexible. As you grow older, your bones harden making it even more difficult to reach your toes.

Fortunately, practicing these techniques will not only make you more flexible but you will improve posture, especially if your job requires you sit for long hours.

  • Aligns the spine after a workout

Workouts are great. You get to lose weight, remain in shape, and look sexy. We all love an hourglass figure, right? However, during workouts your bones and muscles are put under a lot of stress. This is why you feel a bit tired after a workout.


A study by the US Army Physical Fitness School found that when an army ranger used gravity boots or an inversion tables after a rigorous workout, his/her compression injuries would heal faster and their body would recover faster after a workout.

When you inverse yourself for a few minutes after your workout, your muscles decompress and ease pressure on your joints.

  • Lowers stress & increases energy

You have to agree, life is more stressful now than it was 10 years ago. Right? The economy is a bit tough. Currently, more than half of the American population suffers from some type of stress. This research on this technique showed that it lowers stress by regulating hormones and improving sleep quality.

The researchers also discovered that inversion devices were able to reduce muscle tension within seconds. Another advantage you will derive from practicing this techniques is increase in your energy levels.

  • Reduces headaches and clears sinuses
inverting benefits

Do you suffer from constant headaches? Well, hanging your body upside down helps heal headaches through increasing blood circulation and removing toxins. 

Inversion relaxes muscles thus reducing tension headaches, and realigns the spine. This in turn minimizes muscle spasms that are the source of most headaches.

To clear sinuses, an inversion table or chair forces more blood into your head causing your nasal passages to become moist thus helping the passages to work more effectively.

  • Helps repair herniated disk and alleviate the pain

The force of gravity is our frenemy. This force is the reason we are able to stay on the ground. Unfortunately, the same force is the cause of compression build up on your spine. This compression leads to herniated disks.

A herniated disk or slipped disk can result in excruciating pain. Your doctor may recommend surgery on the slipped disks but there is no guarantee surgery will work, plus recovery takes quite a long time. Inversion decompresses the spine and returns the disk into its place.

Dr. Allan Mandell, a renown chiropractor, uses inversion therapy to help patients suffering from herniated disk. In the video below, Dr. Mandell demonstrates how he uses this technique on his patients.

  • Inversion therapy can help you grow taller

Height is an asset. Tall people are always deemed to be more successful and responsible. Isn’t height the reason why Saul was chosen as Israel’s king?


Have you ever desired to grow taller naturally? For ages we have been told that only children can grow taller. But, now, with the best inversion chair one can hang upside down and grow taller. However note that, no scientific evidence have been provided to back this claim.

Inversion Therapy Risks

For most people, inversion can be practiced without effects. However, medical practitioners do not recommend these exercises to people who have certain medical conditions. These exercises are not ideal for people who suffer from:

    • Cardiovascular ailments such as heart disease, high blood pressure or stroke
    • Joint and bone ailments such as spinal injuries and osteoporosis.
    • Diseases such as glaucoma, ear infections, or conjunctivitis.
    • Also, do not inverse if you are pregnant, obese, or are using blood-clotting medications.

Inversion therapy devices

The types of techniques you can use are determined by the equipment you have. Here are the three devices you can use:

1. Inversion chairs

Inversion chairs are designed to stretch your back. Some chairs allow you to do other workouts to strengthen the core muscles. The prices are determined by the brand and model.

   2. Inversion Tables

inversion table

These stretching tables use the same concept as inversion chairs. Some models allow you to do abs crunches and torso rotations. As with chairs, prices are determined by the brand and model.

    3. Gravity boots

Inversion therapy without table can be done using specialized boots. These gravity boots are ankle wraps that work in combination with the equipment. They are designed to make hanging safer and easier.

           Inversion therapy FAQs

Below we have answered some frequently asked questions regarding this back pain relief technique

1. Does hanging upside down increase height?

The answer is neither no or yes. Some people have claimed that inverting has made them an inch taller. However, these claims have not been substantiated and there is no scientific evidence to back this claim.

It is possible to grow taller because while hanging on an inversion table or chair, your spine decompresses, making more space on your spine. Some people who have done this over a period of time have noted some increase on their height.

2.  Does inversion therapy help a herniated disk?

Yes, it does help. Most people are hesitant of starting this method of treatment because very few physical therapists back it. However, a great number of medical practitioners in the medical community greatly recommend this method.

If you suffer back pain due to herniated disk, you can use inversion therapy to help alleviate this pain. This non-invasive treatment method will offers you more relief than prescription painkillers or over-the-counter medication.

3.  Does inversion therapy work for sciatica?

Yes it does work and it is one of the best sciatica treatments available. Inversion therapy utilizes the force of gravity to decompress the back and pop si joint back in place. 

4. Can inversion therapy help scoliosis exercises to reverse scoliosis?

Back pain is often a result of scoliosis. Gentle traction on your back decompresses the vertebrae, reversing the negative effects of gravity. If your child suffers from scoliosis, you can help them alleviate the pain through inversion therapy. However, before you start, make sure to get your doctor’s consent.

5.  How long to use inversion table

It is highly recommended that you inverse 2-3 times a day; when you wake up, after work, and before bed. If you are a beginner, inverse for 3-5 minutes, don’t overdo it. After you get comfortable with your table or chair, you can do it for up to 10 minutes.

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