Based on the traditional Chinese therapy, acupressure mats promise a range of health benefits | Source: Shakti Mat Facebook

Can the Benefits of Acupressure Mats Improve Your Health?

While you may have heard of the ‘on-trend’ treatment of acupuncture, the similar alternative therapy of acupressure is lesser known. Based on the traditional Chinese therapy, acupressure mats are touted as a cure-all by many who believe in their proposed ability to rebalance the flow of vital energy known as ‘qi’ through your 12 major ‘meridians’. And with acupressure mats allowing for you to conveniently try the therapy in the comfort of your home, the supposed benefits of acupressure may be worth investigating.

What is an acupressure mat?

In short, an acupressure mat is comprised of small sharp spikes that, unlike acupuncture, are designed to apply pressure to the skin rather than pierce it. The idea is that by applying pressure on many different parts of the body – usually on your back, neck and shoulders – at once, the acupressure mat will promote circulation and ease muscular tension. So, while an acupressure mat isn’t supposed to be painful, it certainly isn’t designed to be comfortable. But for the promised results, acupressure mat users say the first few minutes of discomfort are worth it.

What are the benefits?

According to traditional Chinese medicine, acupressure mats stimulate circulation, relieve tension in the muscles, work away stress and anxiety and promote overall wellbeing. Some acupressure mat brands even claim that regular 10 to 20 minute sessions on these spiky mats can improve your mental wellbeing and digestion, citing the ‘pinnacles’ on the mat for their ability to activate your pressure points, effectively releasing tension, emotional blocks and general negative energy throughout your body.

Of course, these proposed benefits remain rooted in traditional Chinese medicine and anecdotal studies rather than scientific research and peer-reviewed studies. According to a review article into the efficacy of acupressure, well designed, randomised controlled studies are needed to really determine the efficacy of this alternative therapy, although it may prove to be a beneficial adjunct treatment for a wide range of individuals dealing with issues like chronic pain.

Shakti Mat

Marketed as 1,000 massages for the price of one, the Shakti Mat is one of the most popular choices for those looking to incorporate acupressure into their lifestyles. Made by hand and crafted with everlasting spikes, the Shakti Mat is available in three spike types.

Neptune Blanket Acupressure Mat

Made with 6,210 massage points, the Acupressure Mat from Neptune Blanket is another popular choice for acupressure advocates. Along with the mat, this set comes with the Neptune Bed pillow which has a further 1,782 massage points to target the neck and shoulders as well as the highs, calves and hamstrings.

Neptune Blanket Acupressure Mat ECO Pro

If buying sustainably is a priority for you, Neptune Blanket also offer an environmentally-friendly version of its Acupressure Mat. But as well as being made with organic materials, the ECO Pro offers more intense acupressure experience with less spikes -approximately 5,525 points- to support the body resulting in more pressure for users.

Halu Acupressure Mat

Available in a range of colour-ways, the Halu Acupressure Mat comes with a pillow and bag so you can take the set with you on the go. Sold through Living Vitality Australia, the mat promises to improve wellbeing and vitality with consistent use.

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