For over 50 years, massage chair brands like Inada, Fujiiryoki, and Panasonic have invented and developed various designs to give consumers the best product possible. Many developments happened in those years and trends in massage chairs have come and gone. At present, advanced technology in massage roller tracks had been introduced such as S-track, L-track, SuperTrac, and the latest, 3D track rollers. To know the difference in these roller tracks below is a comparison that will let you learn the advantages and disadvantages of each massage roller design.
What is a Roller Track
A roller track guides the massage rollers to go up and down the back. It is a long roller track that usually extends from the head and down to the lower back. But in some massage chair models, the roller track reaches the buttocks or the hamstrings. The rollers are the ones that provide the most massage, especially in the spinal area. They travel on the track moving vertically and laterally to knead and tap muscles. With 3D massage, additional move directions like forward and backward are done by the rollers.
To give you an idea on the different features of the four massage roller tracks, the pros and cons are included in the discussions.
Different Massage Roller Tracks
S-Track Massage Roller
This is the type of massage roller track follows the curvature of your spine with the aim to provide massage precision from your neck down to your tailbone. The length varies from chair to chair. It can be between 29 – 32 inches long. The S-Track massage roller is not adjustable and has only one built in intensity.
The Advantage: It has accurate massage roller.
The Disadvantages: It does not massage the glutes and no strength adjustments either.
L-Track Massage Roller
This massage roller track design is actually an extension of the S-Track massage roller. The L-Track massage roller extends continuously from the head down to the hamstrings. It sweeps in an L-shape underneath the seat. Unlike the S-Track, it can provide various accuracy and strength of the massage that reaches the hamstrings or glutes. The L-Track size can vary between 41 – 47 inches.
The Advantage: It can massage the glutes or hamstrings.
The Disadvantages: It is not 3D, no strength adjustments, and poor quality in terms of a neck massage.
SuperTrac Massage Roller
It is an exclusive technology designed by massage chair brand Ogawa. The 43 inches SuperTrac can be found in Ogawa Active massage chair and provide neck-to-glutes massages in a flatbed position. The complete flatbed position enables the use of the natural forces of gravity to give a strong massage. The SuperTrac massage roller is equipped with Smart Curve technology that makes massaging the entire S-curve of your spine possible. It provides the most accurate neck massage and extended coverage that goes all the way down to your glutes.
The Advantages: It gives the most accurate neck massage and also massages the glutes. The removable black pad can change massage from Strong to Deep and vice versa.
The Disadvantage: It’s not 3D.
3D Massage Roller
First pioneered by brands Fujiiryoki and Panasonic, the 3D massage roller technology allows the adjustment of the massage intensity. It is considered the gold standard in massage chair technology. The 3D mechanism offers the most life-like experience in massage. Many massage chair models have this advancement but they differ in the depth and quality of massage. The 3D massage roller ranges from 3 to 5 inches and the massage intensity can be adjusted from light to very deep.
Massage chair models in the market today have different intensity levels. The It-8500 X3, The Luraco iRobotics 7, and the Panasonic EP-MA73 has 5 levels. The Ogawa Smart 3D, on the other hand, has 6 levels and the Osaki JP Premium has 12 levels.
The Advantages: 3D massage rollers provide strength adjustments and smoother, more life-like massage methods.
The Disadvantage: It does not massage the glutes or hamstrings.
The different massage roller tracks have their advantages and disadvantages. Choosing the massage chair depends on you, the buyer. You can decide whether you want a massage chair that gives accurate neck massage, something that massages from head to glutes, or something that provides massage at different intensity levels.