Product: Human Touch HT-1470 Back Massage Pad
Designer: Human Touch
Who doesn't love massages? We sure do, especially since we're on our softening behinds all day (trying to counteract with squats and running regularly), and our back and neck often need some work done on them. But massages don't come cheap...and neither do most full size massage chairs. An inbetween solution is an add-on chair massage pad, like the Human Touch HT-1470 Back Massage Pad we recently got to test....
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Review: Human Touch's HT-1470 Back Massage Pad is a good looking, well constructed model with all the features one might expect from current massage pad models: memory foam cushioning, 4-zone rolling and kneading massage with upper and lower coverage, a heating option, and a remote control.
Prior to the last few years, massage pads were pale comparisons to the full-size $2000+ chair massagers. But now these add-on models are making great strides to bring the same feel without the bulk (and frankly, the usually ugly form factor) of a dedicated massage chair. The Human Touch model fit perfectly ontop of my office chair and was fairly comfortable. We wish we had the option to remove the seat pad, since sitting ontop with it made our Steelcase Leap feel a bit like a high chair, but the back part was a nice snug fit. There's even a small holster for the remote, which is helpful.
The kneading massage action of the rolling pins covers from the lowest part of the back, up near the shoulders with smooth movements that can only be described as mini rolling pins being pushed across your back. It was especially comfortable and enjoyable at the lower end of its coverage, and we tended to use the "low" setting, rather than the "middle" or "full"; this will all depend on where your stress points are located. One criticism we have comparing the Human Touch HT-1470 Back Massage Pad compared to the Homedics Therapist Select Quad-Roller Massaging Cushion we purchased late last year for our mom is that the Human Touch unit's back isn't encased in a hard shell. Because of this lack of a solid hard backing, the rolling mechanism doesn't have as much leverage to push hard against the back like the Homedics version, which has a deep, painful-good massage I personally prefer (my kinks seem to lie underneath the muscles). But the Human Touch pad might be preferable for those who like a softer, gentler massage. A perfect massage pad would offer adjustable massage strength, so we hope a future version adds this features.
Overall, I liked, but did not love the Human Touch pad simply because it didn't give my muscles the deep down massage I've gotten used to experiencing with the Homedics model. It all comes down to preference, and points out that one should give massaging chairs and pads a test run in-store before making the leap (of note, Human Touch's full size chairs give a much stronger, forceful massage; I was that annoying guy hogging up the test model at Linens 'n Things). For now, I'll just bug Emily to crack them knuckles and give me the beat down I deserve, old fashioned style.