We tested 5 different brands. It was exhausting.
But we were determined to find the best exercise chairs for home use, depending on different budgets and activity levels.
Editor’s Choice for the best on our list is the AB Doer 360 Despite its name, it’s not just for abs. This piece of gear receives our stamp of approval for value, easy setup and customer rating (141+ reviews).
Let’s talk exercise chairs…
Chair exercises: Perfect options to get in shape
Exercise helps to improve general well-being. It enhances the function of virtually every system of the body and helps to prevent a wide range of diseases and disorders. Those who exercise regularly get better results — and tend to be healthier — than those who do not.
Most of the commonly recommended exercises such as running, swimming, cycling, powerlifting, etc. are not suitable for elderly people who usually have problems with mobility due to weakened bones and other problems related to old age. Does this mean seniors cannot engage in exercises? No!
Seniors, especially those with reduced or limited mobility, can engage in chair exercises — exercises that are done on specialized exercise chairs. These exercises effectively assist elderly people to exercise their bodies without necessarily mounting undue pressure on their bones. Yet, the results are just similar to those gotten from more rigorous exercises by more active individuals.
By engaging in chair exercises, elderly seniors can ease depression and anxiety, improve their self-esteem, and better their general well-being.
What are exercise chairs?
Just as the name implies, exercise chairs are specialized chairs made for exercising while in a sitting position. They come with a number of features and attachments that help to perform different workout tasks, including cardiovascular, strength training, and flexibility exercises.
With exercise chairs, elderly seniors can engage in regular exercise without having to leave the comfort of their homes or subject themselves to activities that are risky for them.
Why are exercise chairs necessary?
Due to old age, elderly people have weaker bones and are unable to endure exercises like running, cycling, and swimming. Yet, they need to engage in regular exercise. So, their best bet is to engage in exercise in a way that doesn’t put them at risk of falls or additional bodily harm. And that’s where exercise chairs come in.
With an exercise chair, an elderly senior can engage in exercise without supervision, and the caregiver can rest assured that nothing would go wrong. This is because chair exercises are much less risky than other exercise types.
Exercise chairs: What to look for before buying
When looking to buy an exercise chair for an elderly person, it goes without saying, but you shouldn’t rush to buy the first option you stumble upon.
Truth is, there are several models and brands of exercise chairs in the market, and you need to look carefully before making a choice, so you don’t wind up with the wrong buy.
Here are some important things to look out for.
- Ease of use: While some exercise chairs would take some time to get used to, some are much easier to understand, assemble and use. To make things easier for the user, some exercise chairs come with manuals and DVDs containing installation guidelines as well as various exercise types that can be done with the chair.
- Maximum weight support: You need to consider the weight of the user before buying an exercise chair. This is particularly important if the intended user is overweight or obese, as some exercise chairs will not be suitable for such people.
- Seat height: The height of the seat of an exercise chair is important. In fact, whether the user will be derive the intended benefits from the chair or not would depend on how comfortable the chair is. And this comfort hinges largely on the height of the seat. If the seat is too high or too low for the user, there would be problems. So, if you’re not so sure, go for an exercise chair with adjustable seat height.
- Noise: It goes without saying, but a noisy exercise chair can be annoying. So, before buying one, find out whether it’s noisy or quiet while in use.
- Portability: Most exercise chairs are foldable, which means you can easily fold them and carry them about. But this doesn’t apply to some exercise chairs. So, depending on the needs of the intended user, you need to check if your desired exercise chair is portable or not.
Review: Best exercise chairs for seniors and elderly people
As with other important products, exercise chairs of various types and brands abound in the market. And for this reason, making the right choice can be a difficult task, especially for those who aren’t in the know.
But the good news is, we have scoured the market and compared many exercise chairs. Our aim was to find out the best exercise chairs in the market that are suitable for seniors. So, we reviewed and compared based on buyer opinions, product features, brand trust, and other important factors.
Based on our findings, here are the three best exercise chairs for seniors.
1. AB Doer 360
The AB Doer 360 is a lightweight exercise chair that allows the user to do a wide range of workouts from a comfortable sitting position. Call it a home gym, and you’d be absolutely right. It comes with a strong anchor cable that allows for moderate to heavy workouts without the use of heavy weights.
In terms of strength and durability, the Resistance Chair Exercise System has got both. It’s made of strong steel tubing that can support heavy weights (up to 400 lbs.) and can withstand frequent use even in gyms and rehabilitation centers.
The AB Doer 360 is easy to install and get used to. Setup requires no screwdrivers or special tools. The chair also comes with an owner’s manual as well as a DVD showing the different types of exercises that can be done on the chair. The DVD features videos showing real seniors doing the various exercises. So, seniors will find this chair very useful.
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What we like
- Ease to install and use
- No squeaking or grinding under heavy weights
- Quiet during use
- Comes with DVD showing setup and guide and exercises
- Resistance bands are just perfect for seniors (not too strong)
What we dislike
- The seat could be padded more (you may have to buy a cushion attachment)
The Flex Force Resistance Chair Gym is a complete workout system that works perfectly for seniors. It’s a sturdy exercise chair, as evidenced by its thick steel stands. Despite its size, the chair is easy to fold away for easy storage and is easy to install and get used to.
The Flex Force Resistance Chair Gym comes with resistance straps and other attachments that the user engage in chair exercises like bicep curls and wrist curls. According to many users, exercising on this chair for just 20 minutes a day brings great results.
The chair makes for a quiet workout experience, as the bands and rollers work smoothly during workouts. The seat is large enough to make the user comfortable regardless of their size, and the upper and lower band connections allow for proper positioning during exercise.
Setting up the Flex Force Resistance Chair Gym is very easy — although bolts and screws are involved. And the chair comes with an owner’s manual and workout DVD.
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What we like
- Large, comfortable seat
- Sturdy build
- Quiet during use
- Easy to set up
What we dislike
- Doesn’t offer much for lower body exercises
- Not all units have the workout DVD and owner’s manual included
- No replacement bands included
The Pilates Pro Chair Max is another lightweight but strong resistance exercise chair that is suitable for use by seniors. It allows the user to exercises the arms, chest, shoulders, back, abdomen, and legs while in a seated position. So, the user can still get all the benefits of full mobility exercises.
The Chair Gym Total Body Workout is very easy to assemble — the whole task takes less than 30 minutes! And once you’ve set it up, there’s nothing else to do. Just keep on using for as long at it serves you. Keep in mind that you might need to change the handgrips after some time.
Made to support weights of up to 300 lbs. or even more, the Chair Gym Total Body Workout comes with DVDs that teach several workout types as well as setup instructions.
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What we like
- Quite during use
- Easy to set up
- Simple and easy to use
What we dislike
- Does not support heavy weights