We’ve all heard avid yogis exclaim the benefits of standing on their head, but some of us may need support to achieve these enticing benefits. One way to do this is by using an inversion table, which facilitates stretching muscles and ligaments in the back, reducing muscle spasm, relaxing muscles, and creating suction to draw protruded discs toward their center (1).
Although there are numerous benefits to using an inversion table, one should proceed cautiously. In fact, we recommend only a slight angle of 15° when beginning this type of therapy. As your body adjusts, you may increase this angle incrementally over time. One should feel a gentle pull on the back and neck, while still allowing the body to adjust easily to the inversion.
Also note that those with heart or circulatory conditions should check with their doctor prior to using an inversion table (2).
- Draper, D. O. (2005). Inversion table traction as a therapeutic modality, part 1: Oh my aching back. Athletic Therapy Today, 10 (3): 42-44.
- Lasich, C. (2011). The upsides and downsides of inversion therapy. Retrieved from:http://www.healthcentral.com/chronic-pain/c/23153/133392/inversion/