7 Best Inversion Table Reviews (Pro Athletes Invert, Could You Benefit Too)

People who train in MMA are no strangers to sore backs and stiff bodies. Inversion tables claim to provide genuine relief, and can improve your flexibility and mobility for MMA training.

We’ve rounded up the 7 best inversion tables on the market, and judged them on how they can help you with your MMA training and recovery.

How Does an Inversion Table Help with MMA Training?

Inversion tables are designed to turn you upside down at a varying angle to reduce pressure on your spine. The more upside down you go, the more your spine decompresses, so there is less pressure on your spine (1).

Man kicking bag at MMA training

The idea is that this spinal decompression helps to relieve back pain, neck pain, and poor circulation (2). Some people claim it can also create more protective fluid around your spinal discs, better flexibility, better blood flow, and decreased inflammation — all good health benefits when it comes to sorting out a banged up MMA body.

In theory, inversion therapy takes gravitational pressure off the nerve roots and disks in your spine and increases the space between vertebrae. Inversion therapy is one example of the many ways in which stretching the spine (spinal traction) has been used in an attempt to relieve back pain.

Edward R. Laskowski, M.D. – Mayo Clinic

While the Mayo Clinic found no evidence of long-term relief for back pain, they acknowledge that a lot of people out there find it helps with short term relief at the very least (3). If you use it often enough, it stands to reason that the reported benefits should be on-going.

Translating to MMA, stiff backs, tight hamstrings, and generally sore and tight bodies could well be relieved by regular inversion therapy.

Inversion tables are generally used by not-so-mobile people to get more mobile, so given that you are likely to be pretty fit and active already, an inversion table should take your training to a new level.

Less pain, added with greater flexibility and mobility should lead to better training sessions with improved technique, stamina, and endurance. 

The best bit about it, is that it doesn’t really require much effort. Since you simply have to hang there (while being supported by your ankles), it could make a good wind down exercise after a hard training.

As an important side note, hanging upside down for extended periods of time increases your blood pressure (4). If you already have high blood pressure, please talk to your health professional before undertaking inversion therapy.

Man hanging upside down with inversion table.

So now that we know what inversion therapy is, let’s have a look at what you should consider when it comes to buying an inversion table to use at home.

Buying Guide — How to Choose the Best Inversion Table for MMA Training

With the trend of inversion therapy growing in popularity, there are more and more manufacturers offering different options when it comes to inversion table. We take a look at what you should consider when looking at an inversion table to make sure you get all the features you want and need.

Height and Weight Capacity

Most inversion tables on our list below cater for a wide variety of human beings in all shapes and sizes. But if you’re on the taller side (like Stefan Struve) or heavier side (like Daniel Cormier), take note of the height and weight capacities to make sure you can use it safely.

In terms of height adjustment, every table can be changed, but they will have a fixed weight limit.

Frame

Again, we’ve only put in the best inversion tables on this list, but if you look elsewhere, make sure the table is made of good material.

Surprisingly, the United States requires no safety or quality certifications for inversion table build quality, which has lead to a rise in the number of inversion tables that use cheap steel. Remember, you’re trusting you inversion table to hang your complete bodyweight upside down, as well as swing you to different inversion angles.

Man in gym surrounded by equipment holding gym gear.

A few inversion tables on this list offer 3rd party safety assurance, so if you have to be absolutely sure the frame is of good quality steel, go for those tables. Some of the best MMA gyms have their own inversion tables, so you may want to ask if your gym already has one.

Manual or Motorized

Because it’s more likely that you’re looking for reasonably affordable inversion tables that you can use at home, we’ve only included manually operated inversion tables on this list. That means that to change the inversion angle, you change it either with a peg system that you shift, or by using your own bodyweight.

If you want the luxury treatment, there are motorized inversion tables that let you change the inversion angle with the push of a button. These go into the thousands of dollars though, so if you want this level of convenience, you might want to seek out an inversion therapy clinic in your area.

Inversion Control

Inversion control means how you change the inversion angle. For example, if you start lying flat and want to go all the way to upside down, how do you get there?

The usual way is a peg/crossbar system that you preselect at your desired angle. From there, once you lean back, it will only go back as far as you’ve selected. 

In this peg/crossbar system, you will need to consider how many pegs/angles are on offer. Some inversion tables on this list offer 5 separate angles, some offer less. This is really just a matter of preference, but in our minds the more available inversion angles the better, as it will help you ease into greater inversions with less stress on your body. 

The other way for adjusting inversion is using nothing but gravity and your body weight. This is less stable and controlled than a peg system, but you are free to invert at whatever angle you want, without being restricted by how many pegs/angle are available. We probably wouldn’t recommend this for beginners, as it can be a wild ride if you’re not used to controlling the angle with just your bodyweight. However, if you’ve got a strong core already, it should be no problem.

Padding and Support

In terms of padding and support in your inversion table, it really comes down to getting what you pay for. Some budget inversion tables on this list will simply have a padded backrest. Others will have full memory foam, with an adjustable headrest. 

And while you might think the more padding the better, one of the more expensive inversion tables on our list gets rid of padding all together, with the thinking a hard table provides more spinal decompression. We’ll explain that further down in our list.

You’ll also want to consider what ankle support system each table offers. Again, some provide simple support that may lead to fatigue, whereas others offer fully adjustable, unique ankle support.

Generally though, decide what you think would make you feel most comfortable, after all, you’ll be literally hanging upside down from your table for around 15-20 minutes at a time.

Warranty Length

For our list of the best inversion tables, we’ve made sure that every table we feature has at least a 1 year warranty.

There are tables on this list that offer upto a 5 year warranty, as well as a 30 day return policy.

While you shouldn’t have any warranty problems with the inversion tables we’ve picked for you, it does provide good peace of mind for your investment.

Size and Weight

Not surprisingly, these are not small pieces of equipment — so consider what is practical for you with the size you have available. If you’re putting your inversion table in your garage, you probably don’t need to worry about its size too much. However if it’s in your office or spare room, you might want to look at a smaller inversion table, or one that collapses for storage.

If you plan on having to move your inversion table around a lot, also take note of the weight. Some of these tables are not light, and that might be a challenge if you don’t use your inversion table too often, or if you need to move it from room to room every time you use it.

The Reviews of The Best Inversion Tables of 2020 

1. Innova ITX9600 Heavy Duty Inversion Table – Best Beginner Inversion Table for Back Pain

Innova Heavy Duty Inversion Table

The Specs

  • Maximum weight: 300 lbs. | 136 kgs.
  • Height capacity: 4ft-10 in to 6ft-6 in | 147cm – 198 cm 
  • Frame: Heavy duty, 38 mm frame.
  • Manual or motorized: Manual
  • Inversion control: 6 positions controlled by pin system.
  • Padding and support: Padded headrest, backrest and reversible ankle system.
  • Warranty length: One year.
  • Size: 16 x 28 x 63 in | 41 x 71 x 160 cm.
  • Weight: 52 pounds | 24 kgs.

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The Good

  • 6 positions to ease into inversion.
  • Different options for ankle support.
  • Large padding throughout.
  • Not too expensive.
  • Large adjustment range for height.

The Not so Good

  • No ankle straps
  • No lumbar pad
  • Quality not as good as other tables on this list.

If you are just starting out with inversion table therapy, you want an inexpensive table that can support your weight well, and be comfortable at all inversion angles.

The Innova ITX9600 Heavy Duty Inversion Table is a friendly, affordable introduction to inversion therapy, due it’s generously padded table and adjustable headrest.

Using a 6 position pin system (a lot of positions for the price) the Innova ITX9600 allows you to become fully inverted for maximum spinal decompression. You’re also able to adjust the inversion angle without getting off the table, which is a plus for ease of use and convenience. 

To get down to this affordable price however, there are a few things you miss out on, namely a lower level of ankle support, and there is no lumbar pad included.

All in all, in terms of inversion tables to start out with, the Innova ITX9600 is a great start, especially if you have other not-so-athletic people in your house that also want to use it. If you find you need more of an advanced stretch as the months go on, there are plenty of other good tables on this list to move on to.

2. Harison Inversion Table – Best for Tall People or Heavy People

HARISON Heavy Duty Inversion Table for Back Pain Relief

The Specs

  • Maximum weight: 350 lbs. | 159 kgs.
  • Height capacity: 4ft-8 in to 6ft-5 in | 142 cm – 196 cm 
  • Frame: Heavy duty steel frame
  • Manual or motorized: Manual
  • Inversion control: 4 positions controlled by pin system.
  • Padding and support: Full memory foam.
  • Warranty length: 30 day return, 1 year for table, 5 years for frame. 
  • Size: 28 x 55 x 75 in | 75 x 140 x 191 cm.
  • Weight: 82 pounds | 37 kgs.

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The Good

  • Commercial gym level build quality.
  • Weight inspires confidence in its safety.
  • Large level of height adjustment.
  • Memory foam helps relieve tension.
  • Simple instructions for assembly.

The Not so Good

  • A bit heavy when it comes to moving it around.
  • Less levels of inversion than other tables on this list.

The Harison Inversion Table is accomodating for people of almost every body type, whether you are 4’8” and 120 pounds, or 6’5” and 350 pounds. To support this wide range of body heights and weights, the Harison Inversion Table is made of commercial gym quality, heavy duty steel, which brings it in at a whopping 82 pounds.

Now that’s either a positive or a negative, depending on how you look at it — that heavy weight will instill confidence in its safety, but it might also be a pain if you have to move it around often.

This table also has one of the more generously padded backrests, that uses this memory foam for ultimate comfort, no matter how big or small you might be.

3. Innova ITM5900 Advanced Heat and Massage Inversion Therapy Table – Best for Massage

Innova ITM5900 Advanced Heat and Massage Inversion Therapy Table

The Specs

  • Maximum weight:  300 lbs. | 136 kgs.
  • Height capacity: Up to 6ft-6 in | 198 cm. 
  • Frame: Tubular steel frame.
  • Manual or motorized: Manual
  • Inversion control: 6 positions controlled by pin system.
  • Padding and support: Adjustable headrest, massage and heating feature. 
  • Warranty length: 1 year limited.
  • Size: 28 x 46 in | 71 x 117 cm.
  • Weight: 67 pounds | 30 kgs.

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The Good

  • Heat and massage feature.
  • Lumbar pad.
  • Adjustable headrest.
  • Easy to get on and off.

The Not so Good

  • Ankle holding system while generally comfortable, is not adjustable.

If you want to feel like you’ve been to the day spa as well as the chiropractor, the Innova ITM5900 may very well do that for you.

Featuring both heating and vibration massage features, the Innova ITM5900 represents good value for money given its luxurious features. 

It also offers an impressive level of adjustment, with 6 inversion angles, 3 levels of headrest adjustment, contoured lumbar support, and improved ergonomics on the ankle holding system.

One thing to note is that you’ll need to plug it in for massage and heat features, so make sure a power socket is nearby.

4. Exerpeutic Inversion Table – Runner Up, Best for Massage

EXERPEUTIC Inversion Table with AIRSOFT NO PINCH Ankle Holders, SURELOCK Safety Ratchet System, and Lumbar Support

The Specs

  • Maximum weight: 300 lbs. | 136 kgs.
  • Height capacity: 4ft-9 in to 6ft-6 in | 145 cm – 198 cm.
  • Frame: Heavy duty steel frame (UL 3rd-party safety certified).
  • Manual or motorized: Manual
  • Inversion control: 3 positions controlled by crossbar. 
  • Padding and support: Foam backrest, removable heat and massage pad, no pinch ankle support.
  • Warranty length: 1 year.
  • Size: 26.5 x 56.5 x 64 in | 67 x 144 x 163 cm.
  • Weight: 65 pounds | 29 kgs.

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The Good

  • Lightweight.
  • Good feature set, including heat and massage for price.
  • Comfortable ankle holders.

The Not so Good

  • Only three levels of inversion.
  • Not as much adjustability as other tables.

This table misses out on the top spot for best massage inversion table for just a few reasons. It’s a bit more expensive than the Innova ITM5900, it only has 3 versus 6 inversion angles, and it just doesn’t offer the same amount of adjustability as other tables on this list. 

In saying that, it has a few benefits over the Innova ITM5900. The vibration massage pad can be placed vertically, horizontally, or just removed altogether. It also has a far superior ankle lock system that uses air pockets to support your ankles with less pressure and no pinching.

While this is our runner up for the best inversion table for massage, if you value comfortable ankle support above all else, we recommend the Exerpeutic Inversion Table.

5. Ironman Gravity Highest Weight Capacity Inversion Table  – Best for Heavyweights

IRONMAN Gravity Highest Weight Capacity Inversion Table with Optional No Pinch AIRSOFT Ankle Holder

The Specs

  • Maximum weight:  350 lbs. | 159 kgs.
  • Height capacity: 4ft-10 in to 6ft-6 in | 147 cm – 198 cm. 
  • Frame: Heavy duty integrated steel frame.
  • Manual or motorized: Manual
  • Inversion control: 6 positions controlled by pin system.
  • Padding and support: Memory foam backrest with waterproof vinyl cover. 
  • Warranty length: 1 year limited.
  • Size: 28 x 46 in | 71 x 117 cm.
  • Weight: 67 pounds | 30 kgs.

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The Good

  • Easy to lock/unlock ankles.
  • Multi-layered memory foam for comfort.
  • Can be folded for storage.
  • Come with removable lumbar support cushion.
  • Come with equipment mat to protect floors.

The Not so Good

  • Assembly can be difficult.
  • Fasteners have been found to be not so durable.
  • A bit heavy (but not the heaviest on this list) when it comes to moving it around.

The Ironman Gravity Inversion Table is the table for the big boys, safely supporting people upto 350 pounds. Strength and durability are its key selling points, and includes a waterproof PVC mat for stability as well as keeping your floors scratch free.

Despite it having the highest weight rating on our list (equal to the Harison Inversion Table), the Ironman Gravity Inversion Table is far from the heaviest table we have here.

It also folds away, so it won’t take up as much space as some of the other tables available. Not bad given it’s 350 pound capacity.

No matter your size and weight though, you can use the Ironman Gravity Inversion Table with full confidence in its safety and stability.

6. Teeter EP-560 Ltd. Inversion Table – FDA Approved

Teeter EP-560 Ltd. Inversion Table, Back Pain Relief Kit, FDA-Registered

The Specs

  • Maximum weight:  300 lbs. | 136 kgs.
  • Height capacity: 4ft-8 in to 6ft-6 in | 142 cm – 198 cm. 
  • Frame: Heavy-gauge steel frame (UL 3rd-party safety certified), plastic table. 
  • Manual or motorized: Manual
  • Inversion control: Free positioning based on gravity/arm position.
  • Padding and support: No padding, acupressure nodes.
  • Warranty length: 5 year full warranty.
  • Size: 29 x 84 x 86 in | 73 x 213 x 218 cm.
  • Weight: 65 pounds | 29 kgs.

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The Good

  • The only inversion table available that is FDA registered.
  • UL (Underwriter Laboratories) 3rd-Party Safety Certification.
  • Acupressure nodes.
  • Unique take using a hard table instead of a soft table, for optimum decompression.

The Not so Good

  • Expensive
  • The hard table design won’t be for everyone.

As we mentioned earlier, inversion tables sold in the United States do not require any certification on safety or quality. But inversion therapy brand Teeter went out of their way to become FDA registered, and they are the only brand available right now that can boast such reassuring certification. Teeter inversion tables were also certified safe by a third party in Underwriter Laboratories.

Another thing that Teeter does differently with this table is it’s complete lack of padding on the backrest.

While that might seem a bit jarring, their thinking is that a thick foam pad encourages your spine to sink into the cushioning and compress. They believe their hard plastic backrest platform encourages full decompression the spine, for maximum benefits.

They go even further with their concept, by offering 8 points of acupressure for “trigger-point release and focused relief”

I’ve suffered from several back injuries over the years from jiu jitsu and working out. One of the things that has helped me a lot is using one of those Teeter Inversion Tables…I strap my ankles into this thing and I hang upside down – it’s a great way to decompress your back and get rid of pain.

Joe Rogan, Bjj black belt and UFC Commentator

This table is no-nonsense and serious about inversion, and it’s reflected in its high price and overwhelmingly positive reviews. With belts like Joe Rogan using them along with some of the best MMA fighters you can be sure there is some benefit to be gained by inverting.

7. HYD-Parts Inversion Table – Budget Pick

HYD-Parts Inversion Table Back Therapy Fitness Back Pain Relief

The Specs

  • Maximum weight:  300 lbs. | 136 kgs.
  • Height capacity: 4ft-3 in to 6ft-5 in | 129 cm – 196 cm. 
  • Frame: Steel tube frame.
  • Manual or motorized: Manual
  • Inversion control: 3 positions controlled by pin system.
  • Padding and support: EPE Sponge with “advanced leather” for the backrest.
  • Warranty length: Not provided.
  • Size: Not provided.
  • Weight: Not provided.

See On Amazon

The Good

  • Easy to set up.
  • Good value for money.

The Not so Good

  • The least (equal) amount of inversion adjustment on this list.

The HYD-Parts Inversion Table is a no-frills option for those on a budget. On the plus side, it still keeps up with the other tables on this list in terms of height and weight capacity, but it falls back on things like a lack of inversion angles and adjustability.

The ankle positioning system is also pretty basic, but overall the table is safe and secure with decent material for the money.

You won’t get everything you want with the HYD-Parts Inversion Table, but you should have everything you need if you’re on a budget.

The Verdict: What Is the Best Inversion Table for MMA?

All of the inversion tables we’ve picked on this list are top quality and will serve you well for whatever specific needs you might have.

But if it came down to the crunch, and we had to pick just one table to be the best inversion table for MMA, it’d be…the Innova ITM5900 Advanced Heat and Massage Inversion Therapy Table. For a very reasonable price, you get heat and massage features, adjustable headrest, and 6 angles of inversion. At just 67 pounds, it’s also pretty easy to move around.

It may not strictly be the best table on our list, but for its price, the Innova ITM5900 Advanced Heat and Massage Inversion Therapy Table offers the best value for money.

If you have a question or two about these inversion tables, we’d encourage you to click on the links to see what other customers say about their inversion tables. 

Enjoy the health benefits of your inversion therapy, and happy training!

References

  1. Johnson, J. (2018, May 4).Can inversion therapy help with back pain? – Medical News Today. Retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321724.php
  2. What Are the Risks and Benefits of Inversion Therapy? – Healthline. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/inversion-therapy
  3. Laskowski, E. (2019, April 20). Inversion therapy: Can it relieve back pain? – Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/back-pain/expert-answers/inversion-therapy/faq-20057951
  4. Haskvitz, EM. Hantenm WP. (1986, September). Blood pressure response to inversion traction – Pubmed.gov. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2944136

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