Pain relief is not always a straightforward thing for chronic pain sufferers. Simply taking painkillers, even strong ones, doesn’t always work. Even surgery is not always a guaranteed solution.
For a lot of people, the focus is on pain management through both medication and holistic therapies. One type of therapy that has been around for centuries is acupuncture. It targets specific pain and pressure points in the body to reduce pain, relieve muscle tension and improve blood flow.
While there has been plenty of scepticism over whether it really works, many studies have shown positive results. Many patients also report greatly reduced pain and improved relaxation.
But you don’t have to go to an acupuncturist to try out this therapy. A modern method of doing acupuncture is using an acupuncture mat. You can use it from the comfort and privacy of your own home and without having to pay a professional.
How does an acupuncture mat work
Don’t worry; an acupuncture mat is not riddled with needles to pierce your skin. In fact, nothing goes under your skin.
Many acupuncture mats instead use plastic spikes that stimulate dozens of pressure points on your body. This triggers the release of pain-relieving hormones. It also boosts blood flow and helps your body and mind relax.
To use an acupuncture mat, you simply lay on it. The spikes are arranged to align with specific points on your body. You can also place it on the back of a chair and lean against it.
Users report feeling tingly or prickly when they lie on an acupuncture mat. It’s not painful at all.
We researched and compared the best acupuncture mats to help you find the best one. We especially focused on those with the highest number of success stories. Here are our top picks.
Best acupuncture mat reviews
1. Large Acupressure Mat for Pain Relief and Muscle Relaxation by Kurtzy
- PRESSURE POINTS: Our acupressure mat naturally reduces muscle tension and back pain by targeting pain points and blocking the pain you are...
- FLOWER SPIKES: Our mat features 230 spiked flower tops which help support your back and promotes circulation. Simply lay on the mat for 30 minutes a...
- PADDED: Our 100% cotton mat measures 66 x 41 x 2 cm (25.98 x 16.14 x 0.78") and is padded with foam for extra comfort. The cover can be removed and...
- MULTIPLE USES: The possibilities are endless with this mat! You can sit up on the floor or a chair with the mat behind your back, lie on it on your...
- MONEY BACK GUARANTEE: All accupressure mats sold come with a 100% money back guarantee, just incase you are not entirely happy with your purchase....
This oversized acupressure mat provides a ‘bed of nails’ massage. It’s more relaxing than it sounds.
The mat consists of 230 spiked tops targeting different pressure points on your body. It helps reduce pain, increased blood circulation and boosts relaxation.
Kurtzy recommend using it for 30 minutes a day. Just lie down on it on your back, front or side. You can also sit down on a chair or floor and lean your back against it. They even recommend using it for yoga. You can also lie on it for half an hour before bed to help you sleep better.
Beneath the spiked top, there’s a foam pad to ensure you are comfortable. The top can be removed and washed.
You can roll up the mat and carry it with you when travelling.
What we like about it:
- Immediate pain relief.
- Easy to travel with.
- Versatile – you can use it in many different ways.
2. White Lotus Acupressure Mat
- ✔EFFECTIVE– 6543 plastic spikes specifically designed to regulate endorphins to benefit energy levels, stress, poor sleeping, tense muscles,...
- ✔LARGER – Made to fit European physiques covering your entire back for better effect, 40 by 60cm
- ✔SAFER: Spikes made from food grade plastic not sun sensitive ABS plastic. No glue is used in the attachment of the spikes avoiding any potential...
- ✔MORE COMFORTABLE: The only mat to be made using our unique memory foam to better contour to your individual back.
- ✔ETHICAL: 100% European materials produced under confidence in textiles certificates for both the cotton and the foam.SEE OUR DISCOUNTED MAT AND...
This mat has even more spikes, 6,543 of them. It measures 42 by 65cm, making it perfect for those looking for a larger mat to cover a bigger body surface.
It is hand made in Europe by professional acupuncturists to ensure the best results. This includes adding a memory foam insert beneath the spikes for added comfort and using hypoallergenic dye in the material to ensure it’s safe for everyone.
The seller recommends using it for 10 to 30 minutes daily. You can lie on it or lean your back against it. Start by wearing a thin shirt when using it. As you get used to the prickly feeling, you can do it with no clothes.
Either way, it will help you relax, reduce pain your back and joints and improve your general wellbeing.
What we like about it:
- Larger than most mats and has more spikes.
- Quick pain relief.
- Hypoallergenic material.
- Comes with a travel/storage bag.
3. Yogibare Acupressure mat
- Choose single mat or mat & pillow set ! Our Acupressure mat measures 74cm x 43cm x 2cm. The acupressure spikes are equally placed across the mat to...
- The Acupressure Mat works in a similar way to the ancient art of acupuncture, stimulating energy, vitality and a sense of well being in the body. ...
- The gentle, painless pressure of the mat allows the body to relax and release endorphins, creating pranic flow or life force within the body. At...
- When using the mat you will feel a sense of elation inviting happiness, energy and calm into your day.
- Can be used on the floor, on the sofa, on your bed, even for your tired achey feet to stand on! Our mat even works on your neck by simply rolling it...
The Yogibare acupressure mat comes in four colours: black, grey, purple and orange. More importantly, it’s really big. It measures 74 by 43cm. It’s great if you have a bigger body or want to cover a larger body area at the same time.
When you lie on it, the rounded pins stimulate your nerves and muscles. This releases hormones that relieve pain and promote relaxation.
Yogibare also recommends you use it on your jaw and facial muscles. Just roll it up and lie on it like a pillow, making sure to avoid your eyes.
20-40 minute sessions daily will keep any pain at a minimum. And even if you are not in pain, it will help you relax.
There is a thin foam insert underneath the spiked top for added comfort. The top itself can be removed for cleaning.
What we like about it:
- It’s big.
- Can be used on both the body and face.
- Great for relaxation and pain relief.
4. Supportec Acupressure Massage Mat & Pillow Set
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This pack consists of both a massage mat and pillow. You can get the set in either green or purple.
The mat is quite large, measuring 66cm by 41cm and containing 7992 pressure points. The pillow measures 37cm by 15.5cm.
Both are really easy to use. With the mat, just lie on it either on the floor or on the bed. Then place the pillow under your head and face.
The combined body and face/head massage provides enhanced relaxation and pain relief. Some users have actually fallen asleep on the mat.
What we like about it:
- Includes mat and pillow.
- Large mat.
- Two colours available.
5. MYSA Thermo Acupressure Mat
- Do you wish to enjoy the benefits of acupressure on the widest possible area, from the sacral region to the back of your neck? Are you interested in a...
- We have really outdone ourselves. The heatable pillow will allow you to attain the deepest level of relaxation and relief of neck tension. Only those...
- Our Mysalus Mysa vegetable-fibre padding ensures all this as it has been specifically developed for your wellbeing and that of our planet!
- The beneficial properties of acupressure will relieve pain and relax the muscles surrounding the spine, "lightening your load" (i.e. re-establishing...
- Thermo Mysa will get the body to secrete endorphins (our natural painkillers) and will boost blood circulation and nerve stimulation along the whole...
This is an advanced type of acupressure mat. It contains around 10,000 spikes. It also includes a heated pillow that provides additional heat therapy to your neck area. This helps your neck and upper back muscles relax.
To use the MYSA acupressure mat, just lie normally on it. It will stretch from your lower back to your neck and head. Inside the spiked top they use a vegetable-fibre padding to provide maximum comfort. The padding is hypoallergenic and also breathable to keep your body cool and relaxed.
What we like about it:
- Large surface area.
- Comfortable and healthy vegetable-fibre padding.
- Includes pillow for neck massage.
Frequently asked questions about acupuncture mats
Q: Is an acupuncture mat painful to use?
No, it’s not.
There are no needles on the mat to puncture your skin. Instead, there are plastic spikes or nubs that apply pressure on specific points of your body.
This targeted pressure improves blood flow, reduces pain, eases muscle tension and helps lower stress levels.
It can also help you sleep better by reducing stress and relaxing your body.
Q: How do I use an acupuncture mat?
You simply lie on it and try to relax.
Your position will depend on which part of your body you want to target.
If you have back pain, lie on your back. If your glutes are feeling sore, sit upright on the mat. For foot pain, stand on the mat.
Some mats come with a pillow included (also spiked) that you can use to ease pain on your neck.
For best results, either don’t wear anything at all on the part you are targeting or put on a thin piece of clothing if the mat feels too prickly. This ensures the spikes are able to apply the right amount of pressure.
As for the right time to use an acupuncture mat, any time of the day is great. But you might find it more beneficial in the evening just before bedtime.
You’ll be more relaxed and it will help you fall asleep faster.
Q: Can I use an acupressure mat for a headache?
Acupuncture has been used for centuries to relieve headaches. While scientific evidence is limited, many people say acupressure therapy reduces headaches.
If you have a mild headache, especially one caused by stress or reduced blood flow, an acupressure mat can help reduce the pain.
But if you have a persistent headache, see a doctor.
Q: Does an acupressure mat help with weight loss?
There is currently no evidence that an acupressure mat, or acupuncture in general, can help you lose weight.
But it can help you indirectly by improving your sleep quality and lowering stress levels, both factors that can help with weight management.
If however, you are hoping to lose several pounds from using an acupressure mat, you’ll probably be disappointed.
Q: How big is an acupressure mat?
They come in different sizes.
The average width is around 40-50cm while length ranges from 60cm to 80cm.
A good acupressure mat should cover a major section of your body at a go such as the back, the chest and abdomen or the thighs.
If you are taller or have a bigger body, look for a large acupressure mat.