The 7 Best Inversion Tables of 2021

These easy-to-use machines may help relieve back pain

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products, and articles are reviewed by healthcare professionals for medical accuracy. You can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

Commerce Photo Composite

Verywell / Sabrina Jiang

Our Top Picks
It offers multiple foot security options, and you can find your center of gravity with ease due to the customizable features.
Treat neck pain with this option, complete with memory foam, a removable headrest, and four different inversion settings.
The 3-in-1 device stands out for its lumbar pad, which offers heat and massage therapy to take your relief to another level.
Unlike most inversion tables, this option has extra security when you’re inverted—while still offering a comfy experience.
Ideal for small spaces and affordable, the yoga swing allows for a range of exercises in addition to standard inversion.
Designed for serious athletes and taller frames, it features adjustable lumbar support and an ergonomic ankle system.
This pick brings heat into the mix, warming and massaging the back for extra comfort while offering four inversion positions.

Advil and Tylenol don't always do the trick when it comes to back pain relief. And if you've ever injured your back (or suffer from chronic back pain) you know that it can be immobilizing. Inversion therapy, or the use of inversion tables, is a non-medicated form of pain relief that involves flipping your body upside down to relieve pressure from the bones, joints, and discs in the low back. This is thought to decrease back pain by creating a traction force through the spine.

While inversion tables can be a great way to naturally relieve pain, there are a few potential risks to know about before you reach for your credit card. For one, it's important to find a table that has strong, durable ankle support straps, as it's possible to fall while using them. If you have high blood pressure, you should ask your doctor if it's safe for you to try inversion therapy. Flipping upside down could create unnecessary pressure in the eyes or a rise in heart rate.

If you've talked to your doctor and want to give inversion therapy a try, here are some of the best machines on the market that are worth seeing.

Best for Back Pain: Innova Health and Fitness ITX9600 Inversion Table

Innova ITX9600 Inversion Table
Pros
  • Affordable price

  • Ergonomic handholds

  • Comfortable and adjustable headrest

  • Good for beginners

Cons
  • Time-consuming assembly

  • Bulky even when folded

Popular and well-reviewed, it’s hard to find anyone who has something bad to say about the Innova ITX9600 Inversion Table. One of the overall best inversion tables on the market today, the ITX9600 table is ideal for people looking to treat back pain.

The ITX9600 has a large, padded backrest and headrest for when you invert. The equipment boasts six different positional options, ideal for people of different heights and needs. The sturdy metal system includes ergonomic handholds, reversible ankle holding blocks and an adjustable headrest. The True Balance system makes it nearly effortless to invert and to do so safely—none of the dangers of a messy strap system. You have multiple foot security options with the ITX96000 and you can find your center of gravity with ease due to the variety of customizable features.

The ITX9600 inversion table is just the thing to quickly and comfortably invert with ease. It can help you feel that relief from back pain by allowing the compression to stop. The reasonably priced table can be purchased with or without assembly. 

Table Weight: 52 pounds | Weight Limitations: 300 pounds | Added Features: Backrest pad, foam handlebars

What Our Testers Say

"The Innova ITX9600 is made with a durable (and heavy) steel that is designed to hold up to frequent use.It’s affordably priced without sacrificing quality or safety, so you don’t have to worry you’re going to fall mid-inversion. It’s easy to use (even for inversion table beginners), and it’s relatively comfortable." Simone Scully, Verywell writer and product tester

Best for Neck Pain: Body Vision IT9550 Deluxe Inversion Table

Body Vision
Pros
  • Memory-style foam backrest and headrest

  • Steel frame with floor-protecting caps

  • Foam leg rollers to prevent pinching calves

Cons
  • May not fit well for those over 6 feet tall

Although commonly used for back pain, some use inversion tables to help with neck pain. By applying the same principle that gravity is a force that acts on your spine and helps compress your discs, using an inversion table can similarly help reduce pain in the neck and upper back. The Body Vision IT9550 Deluxe Inversion Table is a great option to specifically treat neck pain and generally see many of the advantages of a quality inversion table.

The table is made with memory foam material and a removable headrest that supports both the back and neck with an ergonomic design. It features an adjustable lumbar support pad to allow for added comfort and pain relief. The table has four different inversion settings: 20, 40, 60, and 90 degrees. The stable machine won’t move unless you want it to and the frame safety locking pin system is easy to use but won’t slip. This table is available assembled with an added cost. 

Table Weight: N/A | Weight Limitations: 250 pounds | Added Features: Removable headrest pillow, removable lumbar support pad 

Best With Massage: Innova ITM4800 Advanced Heat and Massage Inversion Table

Pros
  • Lumbar pad massages and applies heat

  • Adjustable headrest

  • Ergonomic ankle-holding system

  • Accommodates very short and tall individuals

Cons
  • May be uncomfortable on the ankles and feet

Many bodily aches and pains cannot be easily cured. Unlike a broken bone that heals itself with rest, an achy back or neck often takes a variety of imperfect approaches. Inversion is one such option, heat and massage are others. The Innova ITM4800 Inversion Table combines them all into one device that might just be the thing to deliver your relief.

With many of the functions of a standard inversion table, what sets the ITM4800 apart is the lumbar pad. This adjustable, rectangular pad both massages your back and applies heat to wherever you need it. The pad is attached to the foam and vinyl back pad for a convenient comfort.

In addition to the heated lumbar pad, the inversion table sports an adjustable headrest, leg extension, and the ergonomic ankle-holding system. The table has six inversion options with an easy-to-use pin system. The entire system is sturdy with steel legs and sports oversized handles for easy maneuverability. 

Table Weight: 57 pounds | Weight Limitations: 300 pounds | Added Features: Adjustable lumbar pad, adjustable headrest pad

Most Secure: Exerpeutic 225SL Inversion Table with ‘Surelock’ Safety Ratchet System

Pros
  • Large and comfortable ankle straps

  • Air-tight padding and grip on ankles

  • Removable lumbar pillow

Cons
  • Doesn't fold up easily

If the purpose of an inversion table is to reduce the pressure of the impact of gravity on your body, then it’s important to feel relaxed and secure while you’re upside down. How can you reduce pressure on your back if you’re tense from fear of falling on your head? Luckily, the Exerpeutic Inversion Table takes security to the highest level with the large and comfortable AIRSOFT holder ankle straps.

Unlike most inversion tables, this SURELOCK and AIRSOFT table has extra security when you’re inverted. The SURELOCK ankle locking system uses two palm-activated adjustable ratchet-tooth locks to secure your feet in place before you go upside down. Additionally, the AIRSOFT locking system covered the original SURELOCK ratchet locks with air-tight padding to cover large portions of your leg and ankles for a firm grip. It’s more secure and more comfortable.

In addition to the extra security of this model, the inversion table also has a removable lumbar pillow, full loop handlebars, 165-degree inversion, and an adjustable rear crossbar with three inversion positions.

Table Weight: 64.4 pounds | Weight Limitations: 250 pounds | Added Features: Ankle holder, removable lumbar support pillow, foam backrest

Best Yoga Swing: UpCircleSeven Aerial Yoga Swing

Upcircleseven aerial yoga swing set
Pros
  • Good for small spaces

  • Affordable price point

  • Allows for a range of exercises

Cons
  • Mounting equipment not included

Inversion tables are an excellent way to experience inversion therapy, but they are far from the only ways. Some of the most popular alternatives are yoga swings. These more rope-like devices are better for small spaces, often less expensive, and may allow people to do more versatile workouts. The UpCircleSeven Aerial Yoga Swing is one of the best options on the market when it comes to popularity, price, quality, and satisfaction.

Unlike an inversion table, which looks like a standard piece of workout equipment, a yoga swing is more of a series of connected fabrics that hang from a structure and allow inverted activity. The UpCircleSeven swing can hold up to 550 pounds, is triple-stitched for security, and features handles for easier inversion.

Able to be hung from a beam in your home or a tree outside, this parachute material swing allows for a range of exercises in addition to standard inversion. This swing is available in black, blue, orange, pink, purple, and green and comes with a user guide. However, mounting equipment does need to be purchased separately.

Table Weight: N/A | Weight Limitations: 550 pounds | Added Features: Padded foam handles, ceiling mount accessories

Best Heavy Duty: IRONMAN 4000 Highest Weight Capacity Inversion Table

Pros
  • Holds up to 350 pounds

  • Good for very tall individuals

  • Adjustable lumbar support

Cons
  • Expensive

Inversion therapy is popular for people of all types. However, larger people may have trouble fitting on some tables. Many have a maximum height only around six feet and others have low weight limits.

The IRONMAN branded Gravity 4000 is designed for larger inverters. With a maximum height of six-foot-six-inches and a weight limit at 350 pounds, this table can invert a large, strong athlete without issue.

In addition to its extra size and strength, the IRONMAN Gravity 4000 has several other nice features people will enjoy. The adjustable lumbar support is a nice touch for people looking to soothe their back pain with inversion.

Additionally, the palm-activated ratchet ankle locking system gives you peace of mind when you’re going upside down regardless of your weight. The ankle system also sports an ergonomic design. The table can invert a whole 180 degrees and is made of steel, foam, and PVC. The IRONMAN name lets you know that this is designed for serious athletes, but it can be a great choice for anyone.

Table Weight: 76 pounds | Weight Limitations: 350 pounds | Added Features: Removable lumbar pillow, safety handles

Best With Heat: Health Gear ITM5500 Advanced Inversion Technology With Vibrating Massage & Heat

Pros
  • Heat pack runs along the entire backrest

  • Added massage for comfort

  • Holds up to 300 pounds

Cons
  • Expensive

Some doctors believe that inversion therapy can help reduce muscle spasms in the back and reduce pressure on the nerves in the short term. Another proven method to help soothe back spasms is applying heat to the area. The Health Gear Advanced Technology Inversion Table combines these approaches for positive results.

This inversion table has a long heat pack running vertically along the backrest. Unlike some lumbar-only heating systems with inversion tables, this one will warm the entire back. The electric heating pad can also massage your back for added comfort. The rest of the backrest, which includes neck support, is made with memory foam.

This inversion table has a maximum weight for 300 pounds and a top height of 6-foot-5-inches. There are four inversion positions, an extra-long locking arm, and easy-to-use ankle locks. You can easily store this table, as it folds and has wheels. The heat may be the focus of this table, but it truly delivers all of the best features needed for inversion therapy. 

Table Weight: 56.8 pounds | Weight Limitations: 300 pounds | Added Features: Heat and vibrating massage pad, hand controller, foam leg rollers

Final Verdict

Overall, inversion tables are safe for most people to use at home. They aren’t a miracle or instant cure, but when used under the care of a physician or specialist, an inversion table can provide real relief. Inversion tables are commonly used for neck pain, back pain, disc herniations as well as athletic injuries. The flipped position uses the natural force of gravity to increase the distance between each vertebrae, decompressing the disc and spinal canal. However, it’s worth noting that any added space goes right back to the way it was once your head is above your feet.

If you're looking for an inversion table that checks all your boxes (while remaining affordable), you'll want to try Innova's Heavy Duty Inversion Table. For a table that gives you a little more than just the upside down action, Innova's Advanced Heat and Massage Inversion Table offers a therapeutic vibrating massage pad that can soothe moderate back pain while giving you the full body stretch you need.

Innova ITX9600 Inversion Table
Verywell / Simone Scully

What to Look for in an Inversion Table

Size/Weight Limitations 

Each inversion table has its own height and weight specifications. Most can hold someone up to 6’5” and 300 to 350 pounds. You definitely don’t want to push the limits and end up collapsing mid-inversion, so respect these numbers. And, consider how the cushions and straps match up to fit your body. Most have adjustable elements to ensure a custom fit.

These are also signs of a well-designed and built inversion table. “A quality table has a high weight capacity, better safety features, and adjustable settings for more comfort,” says Eric Centofanti, licensed doctor of chiropractic, certified chiropractic sports physician, and a certified athletic trainer. “Safety is always the most important thing to consider when purchasing an inversion table. Ensure there is a safety clip that limits how far you invert back, that it has proper handles and grips to help bring yourself upright, and settings to adjust how inverted you go.”

Add-ons 

Bells and whistles like massage and heat may seem like over-the-top extras, but they can help with muscle and back pain. Some doctors believe that inversion therapy can help reduce muscle spasms in the back and reduce pressure on the nerves in the short term. Another proven method to help soothe back spasms is applying heat to the area. Some models have heat focused on the lumbar area, while others have a heated mechanism lining the entire back support pad.

Safety

When you're inverted, you're at the mercy of the equipment, so safety is top priority. “Being in an inverted or suspended position certainly puts patients in a vulnerable position at risks related to falls or injuries,” says Dr. Lin. “These risks can be heightened in elderly or less coordinated patients. I would recommend consulting with your spine doctor before undergoing inversion therapy.”

Your own doctor can help you determine if inversion is safe for your specific condition. “Prior to buying and using an inversion table, I would recommend patients be evaluated by a spine doctor (either a physiatrist, pain management doctor, orthopedic or neurosurgeon),” says Dr. Lin. “A physiatrist or pain management doctor may be able to guide patients regarding the specific modalities of conservative and manual therapy that would be best suited for the patient. More importantly, they can help identify any conditions that may need more urgent treatment.”

That doesn’t mean you can’t safely invert using inversion tables at home. “Inversion can safely be done at home, however there are conditions one should consult their healthcare professional before using, such as stroke, heart disease, high blood pressure, blood clot or vascular disorders, acute muscle spasm, fracture, and infection,” says Centofanti.

Innova ITX9600 Inversion Table
Verywell / Simone Scully

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do inversion tables work?

    “Inversion tables theoretically help with spinal issues by taking pressure off your spine,” says Dr. Lin. “Prolonged walking and heavy lifting can exacerbate spine related pain because gravity compresses down on your spine. On the other hand, oftentimes lying down can often relieve spine related pain because the weight of gravity is removed. The idea behind inversion tables, as well as other traction techniques, is to take this to the opposite extreme by lengthening your spine. It is important to keep in mind that whatever traction that is applied on your spine with inversion is gone the moment you stand up.”

  • How long should you use an inversion table?

    It doesn’t take long to get the positive spine sensations going. “When using your inversion table, start with sets ranging from 30 seconds to one minute, performing a few sets daily,” says Centofanti. “Always start with less time inverted and with more sets until you know how your body responds.”

  • Are inversion tables dangerous?

    While inversion tables can be a great way to naturally relieve pain, there are a few potential risks to know about before you reach for your credit card. For one, it's important to find a table that has strong, durable ankle support straps. Without strong, secure supports, it is possible to fall while using the table. There are also health conditions that deem an inversion table more risky. If you have high blood pressure, you should ask your doctor if it's safe for you to try inversion therapy. Flipping upside down could create unnecessary pressure in the eyes or a rise in heart rate.

Innova ITX9600 Inversion Table
Verywell / Simone Scully

What the Experts Say

“Inversion tables are a subset of treatments that work by providing traction on your spine. Instead of performing traction manually (someone providing pressure), or mechanically (with a special table with attachments), an inversion table theoretically works by allowing your spine to stretch using gravity.” —James Lin, M.D., spine surgeon with the Mount Sinai Health System

Why Trust Verywell Health?

Sam Hayes graduated with bachelor’s degrees in journalism and political science from UMass Amherst. He wrote his honor’s thesis on relativistic physics. After college, he began writing online content and articles for various businesses, ranging from topics such as bicycle touring to cooking recipes. Eventually, he began graduate school and continues to have fun blogging and writing lifestyle articles.

Additional reporting for this story by Jennifer Nied

As a seasoned health writer, Jennifer Nied understands how vital quality product recommendations are for treating symptoms safely and effectively at home. For over 10 years, she has reviewed products, interviewed experts, scrutinized ingredients, and pored over research studies and claims, to help readers like you understand what works for your specific conditions. Every product in this piece was selected taking into account recommendations from doctors, published research, and real customer reviews.

Was this page helpful?
2 Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Wegner I, Widyahening IS, Van tulder MW, et al. Traction for low-back pain with or without sciaticaCochrane Database Syst Rev. 2013;(8):CD003010. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD003010.pub5

  2. McMonnies CW. Intraocular pressure and glaucoma: Is physical exercise beneficial or a risk?J Optom. 2016;9(3):139–147. doi:10.1016/j.optom.2015.12.001