An acupressure mat sounds tempting because it is said to be a real miracle worker. BRIGITTE tells you what’s behind it and how to use it correctly.
Stress reduction, tension relief, pain relief, improved sleep – what more could you want from a product that doesn’t even have to be taken or applied? An acupressure mat is supposed to do just that. The fine plastic tips of the foam mat ensure a massaging effect and should therefore be sustainable increase well-being. But what’s behind the hype? What types of mats are there, how much do they cost and what do I use them for? We will answer these and other questions!
Where does the acupressure mat come from and how does it work?
The origin of the acupressure mat – also known as fakir, yantra, nail, needle, vitality and massage mat – lies in the Traditional Chinese Medicine, TCM for short. Here it is assumed that your body of different meridians is run through. Once these are blocked, your body is more prone to pain or even diseases. A Yantra mat is supposed to help, because nail boards were already used in India to release people from their blockages. The weakened version of a bed of nails is the acupressure mat as we know it today.
The effect of a fakir mat is widespread. so can treats various ailments – these include headaches, neck pain, tension, sleep disorders, anxiety and stress. We will tell you below how the correct treatment for the individual complaints looks like. It is important to know: With their plastic tips, they ensure relaxation of the muscles, improved blood circulation and thus also help to generate new energy. An acupressure mat is particularly helpful for anxiety and stress to release blockages through targeted acupressure.
The best acupressure mats for effective action
A standardized mat has a length of up to 75 centimeters and a width of up to 46 centimeters and is priced in different areas. There are massage mats that can be purchased from as little as 20 euros, while others cost around 100 euros. We have selected the best models for you.
The bestseller from ShaktiMat (77 x 42.5 cm)
The ShaktiMat is an absolute bestseller. With this product you are promised pure relaxation, improved well-being and fair production. Your sleep should improve and pain should be relieved – and that with just 20 minutes of daily use. The customer service is also convincing based in Germany, while the mats are made in a women’s workshop in India. Natural organic cotton and recycled foam are used for this.
The thermal mat from Thermo Mysa Duo (110 x 48 cm)
This massage mat has a small upgrade, because with the heat function it also ensures pleasantly warm relaxation. The Mat by Thermo Mysa comes with a pillow, which is also great for relieving neck pain. The mat itself is filled with plant fibers and has more than 10,000 nubs.
The Extra Long by Lixada (120 x 42 cm)
The XL version of the Lixada acupressure mat. In addition to a pillow, two massage balls and a carrying bag are also included in the package. It also convinces with its skin-friendly cotton fabric, which makes it hypoallergenic. No toxic substances were used in the balls either. Thanks to the carrying bag that is included, the mat is also ideal for travelling. So you don’t have to forego the effect when you’re on the go – because long-distance travel by plane in particular means a lot of stress for some, which causes them to cramp. In addition to headaches, stress and tension, the mat also helps with mild and chronic sciatica.
The Value of TOMSHOO+ (68 x 42 cm)
If you initially want to spend a little less for your first acupressure mat, this is the TOMSHOO+ Mat a good choice. It also comes with a pillow, a carrying bag and two massage balls, but it only costs 30 euros. Developed by health therapists, the brand’s acupressure kit features more than 7,800 plastic nubs that are said to work like acupuncture. Non-toxic and recycled ABS plastic was used for the tips.
The Excellent by Wellax (74 x 44 cm)
The Product by Wellax is 100% filled with coconut fibers and promises a perfect all-round feel-good experience. Body and mind should be able to relax in no time, which is especially important after a long day at work or a hard workout. Another advantage of the excellent massage mat is the money-back guarantee of up to three years after purchase if you are not satisfied.
The sustainable one from Backlaxx (65 x 38 cm)
The idea of sustainability is at the Mat by Backlaxx clearly in focus. It is manufactured in an environmentally friendly way, is durable, antibacterial and consists of raw materials such as natural coconut fibres, kapok fibers and half-linen. The mat also includes a pillow, a cloth and a bag. There are also two audio books with 110 minutes of relaxation and an e-book for free download.
What is the difference between acupressure and acupuncture?
Both are popular healing methods for the same health problems. Be in acupuncture sharp needles placed in the skin – an uncomfortable feeling for some. Acupressure, on the other hand, “only” deals with that massage these blockages, as the name already suggests – instead of dotting, it is pressed. Thus, the nerve cells under the skin are stimulated and relaxation sets in.
How do I use it to make it work?
The Yantra mat has been bought and you still don’t know exactly how to use it correctly? No problem, we have the solution. In fact, how you use them depends on what you want to treat. In general, you can place the foam mat on the floor, the sofa or your bed put it down – whichever way you are most comfortable with. Because using an acupressure mat is all about one thing: relaxation.
lie down back on the mat and slowly get used to the plastic tips. The feeling may be a bit unusual at first, but this will subside after the first few times as soon as you distribute your weight over the entire mat: After the tingling feeling has subsided, a warm feeling awaits you. A notice: Your back may be red after the first few uses. This is absolutely normal and not a sign that you cannot tolerate the vitality mat. After a few weeks it should settle down.
You can use clothing for the first applications and also later, a normal t-shirt and training pants are sufficient for this. To make the experience a little more intense and thus stimulate blood circulation even more, you can also use the mat without clothing.
How often can I use a massage mat?
Experts say you should use the mat to have an effect about 20 minutes a day use – this is also the average time of previous users. However, there are also acupressure fans who sleeping on a massage mat or use them for several hours, for example when watching a documentary or listening to music. Whatever you choose, using a mat for a long time won’t hurt you.
Acupressure mat for various ailments
Acupressure is one of the most natural ways to treat certain ailments. Here, however, a distinction must be made between classic acupressure and the use of a vitality mat. While back pain, neck pain, headaches, stress and anxiety can all be treated simply by lying on the mat, see for colds and flu something different. This is where you work best with your hands. Press on the point between your eyebrows for ten seconds. Then the pressure builds up at the bridge of your nose using your thumb and forefinger.
The following ailments can be alleviated by simply lying on the Yantra mat:
- back pain
- neck pain
- Herniated disc (the muscles hardened by the herniated disc can thus be loosened)
- high blood pressure
areas where light workout and changing positions on the mat can help:
- Fibromyalgia (Using a fakir mat is not comfortable for everyone suffering from fibromyalgia)
- After the sport
General remark: The effectiveness of acupressure mats has not been scientifically proven. If you are unsure whether you can use a vitality mat for your symptoms, talk to your doctor beforehand.
By the way, you can find a precise comparison of 10 selected mats here.
The following items can also help with tension:
Sources used: hnl.physio, shaktimat.de, onmeda.de