We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.

Inversion tables offer noninvasive, passive mechanical traction that aims to decompress the spine to reduce stress on body structures and improve spinal health.

Quick links

Inversion tables are devices that allow a person to assume an inverted position at various angles. An individual lies on a platform with their ankles supported by a bracket with a ratchet mechanism.

While many devices allow for total inversion, most people choose not to go past 60 degrees. These inversion tables have locking mechanisms or straps that hold the table at a certain angle.

This type of device applies traction to the spine using a person’s body weight and gravity — this traction “stretches” the spine. This increases the space between the spinal vertebrae, relieving the pressure on the discs and nerves and increasing circulation in the area.

Inversion therapy is suitable for people with the following conditions:

A 2020 study found intermittent traction therapy effective in treating chronic low back pain. However, it is important to note that this research involved a small group of participants.

A 2019 systemic review and meta-analysis concludes that mechanical traction leads to significant short-term low back pain reduction in people with herniated discs.

Read more about inversion therapy for low back pain.

It is generally safe to use inversion tables. However, partial-to-full inversion increases blood flow and pressure towards the eyes and head. With this in mind, individuals should avoid using inversion tables if they have any of the following conditions:

A person may wish to speak with a doctor to see if they are a suitable candidate for inversion therapy.

While anecdotal reports show short-term benefits of using inversion tables, limited studies support its benefits.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based.

Innova ITX9600

The Innova ITX9600 allows users to adjust the headrest, height, and footrest to ensure fit and comfort.

The device has a six-angle pin system locking feature for safe and consistent inversion. It also features a True Balance System that allows individuals to find their center of gravity for easy inversion.

It has the following specifications:

  • dimensions: 46 x 28 x 63 inches (in)
  • weight: 52 pounds (lb)
  • weight capacity: 300 lb
  • height capacity: 4 foot (ft) 10 in to 6 ft 6 in
  • features: foldable, reversible ankle holding system, lumbar support pad

Ironman Gravity 4000

The Ironman Gravity 4000 is a foldable yet sturdy inversion table comprising a tubular steel frame and nonskid flood stabilizers.

It has an adjustable strap to limit the angle of inversion and uses a patented ratchet ankle locking system with molded ankle cushions.

It has the following specifications:

  • dimensions: 49 x 26 x 65 in
  • weight: 76 lb
  • weight capacity: 350 lb
  • height capacity: 4 ft 9 in to 6 ft 6 in
  • features: foldable, removable, foldable pillow

FitSpine Teeter LX9

The Teeter LX9 inversion table has several features, including an eight-point floating suspension system, deluxe EZ Reach Ankle system, and Ergo-Embrace Support, which offer comfortable, easy, and safe inversion.

A person can preset their inversion angle using the EZ angle tether and use the stretch handles for added decompression. People can also download the Teeter Move app for guided sessions and classes.

It has the following specifications:

  • dimensions: 60.8 x 27.5 x 57 in
  • weight: 73.6 lb
  • weight capacity: 300 lb
  • height capacity: 4 ft 8 in to 6 ft 6 in
  • features: foldable, lumbar bridge, acupressure nodes, storage caddy

Innova ITM5900

The Innova ITM5900 comes with a vertical massage pad that spans the length of the spine. It provides targeted heat and vibration to the lower back area.

Additionally, the inversion table features a True Balance System and a six-angle pin system for an easy and safe inversion experience.

It has the following specifications:

  • dimensions: 61 x 28 x 46 in
  • weight: 70 lb
  • weight capacity: 300 lb
  • height capacity: 4 ft 10 in to 6 ft 6 in
  • features: adjustable headrest pad

Health Gear ITM5500

The Health Gear ITM5500 comes with a removable full-back heat and vibrating massage pad, four adjustable oversized foam leg rollers, and a 4-in memory foam backrest for a comfortable and relaxing inversion experience.

It allows for a full 90-degree inversion and utilizes a four-pin inversion pin system. It also features an ankle support system allowing for easy adjustments without bending.

It has the following specifications:

  • dimensions: 52 x 28 x 63 in
  • weight: 60 lb
  • weight capacity: 300 lb
  • height capacity: 5 ft 1 in to 6 ft 5 in
  • features: foldable, built-in transport wheels

Body Vision IT9550

The Body Vision IT9550 is a lightweight, foldable inversion table with adjustable high-density foam rollers. It also utilizes a Sur-Lock Easy In/Out Ankle Support System for a safe experience allowing for convenient angle adjustments.

The device has a four-point rear adjustment bar for 20, 40, 60, and 90-degree angle adjustments and comes with removable supports and pillows.

It has the following specifications:

  • dimensions: 57.5 x 26 x 50 in
  • weight: 52 lb
  • weight capacity: 250 lb
  • height capacity: 5 ft 1 in to 6 ft 6 in
  • features: foldable, removable headrest pillow and lumbar support pad

Exerpeutic 975SL

The Exerpeutic 975SL uses a patented iControl Disk Brake System situated on its side to allow a person to lock and unlock the frame at any angle.

It also features a hand-activated ratchet locking system and patent-pending Airsoft ankle holders to ensure comfort and safety while inverting.

It has the following specifications:

  • dimensions: 58.3 x 75.6 x 31 in
  • weight: 74.1 lb
  • weight capacity: 350 lb
  • height capacity: 4 ft 10 in to 6 ft 6 in
  • features: foldable, patented stretch handles, nonskid floor stabilizers

Here are the factors to consider when shopping for an inversion table:

  • Third-party review and certifications: A person should check whether the device is Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-registered and lab-tested for durability.
  • Safety: Falling off an inversion table is dangerous, so an individual should check for safety features and durability, such as the use of heat-treated steel in weight-bearing hinges or joints. One 2021 case study reported that fall injuries related to the use of inversion tables led to cervical spinal cord injuries.
  • Ankle system: Most inversion tables feature extra-long handles to make securing the ankles possible without the need to bend. Also, ill-fitting ankle closures may cause pain and pinching.
  • Ease of use: A person should be able to control and limit their angle and rotation easily.
  • Locking systems: Some inversion tables use pin systems, while others use straps or tethers to limit the angle of inversion.
  • Easy assembly: Some devices come preassembled, but others may require full assembly may come with detailed manuals and videos.
  • Storage: People who are short on space may opt for foldable tables. Some tables even have transport wheels and storage bags.
  • Add-ons: Some inversion tables include heat and vibration pads, while others come with removable pillows and lumbar cushions.

The following are common questions and answers about inversion tables.

How long should a beginner use an inversion table?

To start, a person should use an inversion table for 30 seconds to a minute a day or less. If they feel any discomfort while inverting, they should slowly tip back up.

How long can a person use an inversion table?

A person can work up their time on inversion tables to 5–10 minutes or as soon as they feel the relaxing and loosening effects of the inversion. Hanging upside down for extended periods may lead to blood pooling in the head, which can be dangerous.

How often can a person use an inversion table?

Most people use their inversion tables from one to several times a day.

Sitting, standing, and exercising puts a lot of pressure on a person’s spine. This spinal compression may lead to back pain, pinched nerves, muscle pain, and spasms. An inversion table may be a safe and noninvasive method for relieving spinal stress.

However, a person should always discuss their condition with their doctor before initiating any alternative treatment.

Please note: Medical News Today does not imply warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or endorse any of these applications. Nobody at MNT has evaluated these apps for medical accuracy. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved them unless otherwise indicated.