A massage table warmer is an additional tool some therapists use to increase the amount of comfort the client experiences during a massage session. There are several different options and styles of warmers, from adding warmth to adding moist heat to aid in the therapeutic treatment of some conditions. Choosing a massage table warmer depends on budget and preferences. Most table warmers are designed to be machine washable for multi-client use.
While massage increases blood flow to the area being worked, clients receiving a massage typically lose body heat overall. Massage table warmers provide the client with a heated surface. Deciding on the type of massage table warmer is dependent on factors such as overall comfort, safety features, and ease of use.
Comfort and support are the main design features of most massage tables. The sturdy frame provides a safe foundation while the thick foam padding offers cushioning. This foam padding is typically covered with vinyl. Most massage therapists cover the vinyl with a sheet to avoid excessive skin friction. A massage table warmer offers another layer of comfort.
Massage table warmers range from a simple fitted fleece casing with no heating elements to cotton covering or fleece encased pads over heating coils. Many come with elastic corner straps to avoid slippage when the client moves. Some even provide a layer of insulated foam. This can add to the client's comfort and decrease the risk of burning the vinyl covering of the table.
Many massage table warmers come with an adjustable even heat distribution system with adjustable settings to cater to the individual's preferences. Heat settings can range from a dual system to a digital hand control where the client can adjust the temperature during the massage. These heating mechanisms can come with options such as temperature control, automatic shut off, timers, quick heat, and moist heat.
Temperature control is a feature which allows the client or therapist to set the temperature to avoid overheating. This can be through a dual system where temperature can be set at medium or high, or through a digital control where actual temperature values can be set. The timer and automatic shut off features provide built-in safety to avoid accidents.
Quick heat is a setting which allows for rapid table warmth to allow for a faster turnaround time so therapists can decrease the amount of time between each client. A therapeutic tool used in decreasing pain and stiffness of the joints and muscles is moist heat. Overall stress, tension and pain relief can be achieved through a moist heating option on a massage table warmer.