TruMedic InstaShiatsu MC-1000 Massage Chair Review

TruMedic InstaShiatsu MC-1000 Massage Chair Review


Back Massage


Foot/Calf Massage


Air Compression Massage


User Flexibility (Height/Weight)


Value For Money



  • As Far As Bang For Buck Is Concerned, This Is 10/10!
  • 3D Rollers Allow For Greater Intensity Range, Making Massage Incredibly Intense Or Mildly Subtle!
  • With 7 Massage Techniques, The MC-1000 Can Perform A Solid Massage!


  • Zilch, Zero, Nada....Can't Think Of Anything!

Last Week Was A HoMedics Review, This Week Is TruMedic!

HoMedics, TruMedic, the “medics” got me confused! Are these guys the same? What’s the deal? I’m especially confused because last week was my first ever time to review a HoMedics massage chair (see full review here)!

Firstly, no HoMedics and TruMedic are not sister companies or anything of the sort. Both seem to be independent companies that cater to the same health and wellness market.

That’s pretty much the only similarity between the 2 of them, and oh there is one more: both HoMedics/TruMedic are US companies, headquartered in the US. TruMedic in particular is located in Kings Park, New York.

My first few impressions of TruMedic:

#1 Pretty Cool Company!—I always love it when companies give a sneak peek of the “brains behind the operation”, or in other words sharing what each of the workforce does. Below is a video that made me a smile a little!
#2 They Offer Budget Options!—Which is exactly what I love to see! I’ve noticed that this is at least true for the massage chairs, in that they seem to be very reasonably priced. This is just an initial observation however!
#3 They Carry Interesting Products Aside From Massage Chairs!—Such as blood pressure monitors and even TENS units. Their handheld massagers (neck, back and foot) also have some pretty interesting designs and concepts!

That in a nutshell is a quick and dirty intro of TruMedic and what they’re all about. Now that we’ve gotten that outta the way, let’s dive right in and see what the MC-1000 is all about!


TruMedic InstaShiatsu MC-1000 Massage Chair: 5 Things That Caught My Eye!

#1 It’s Got 3D Rollers!?!?

This one had me floored I must admit. It’s very very rare that you’ll come across a massage chair that offers a lot more than it’s price tag. This ladies and gents is one of those rare instances.

Because for a chair that costs what this does, 2D rollers are very much what one would expect. In fact, I would not have been disappointed if the MC-1000 came with 2D rollers!

Obviously I’ll take 3D rollers any day though! We’ll talk about 3D rollers in more detail, but for now you should know that in the massage chair realm, there are 3 types of rollers that currently exist.

2D, 3D, and 4D. The “D” stands for dimension. Basically the more dimensions a roller can move in, the better will be the overall massage experience. That is the general gist of it!

To really gain an appreciation of 3D rollers, it’s important to understand how they differ from 2D rollers.

2D Rollers
2D Rollers Move Up/Down & Left/RightRemember in high school math class how they kept flooding our minds with x and y axes? We used to draw “y axis” as a vertical line and the “x axis” as a horizontal line. This is the same idea people. We’re going to back high school math full circle! Jokes aside, the same analogy can be used when talking massage chair rollers. 2D is akin to the x and y axes setup. The rollers are restricted to 2-dimensional movement, that is up/down from neck to lower back and side to side along the width of the back.
3D Rollers
Not The Best Picture, But You Get The Point!What happens in the world of math when you add a third dimension? Well you’d be adding a third axis called “z”. The “z axis” would be protruding in and out of the paper is what your math teacher would tell ya! Exact same deal here. With 3D rollers, you get the same 2-dimensional movement, plus an additional dimension of inward/outward (AKA in/out) motion where the rollers move into and out of the back. This additional dimension enhances the overall massage experience by providing a better intensity range.

Hopefully by this point you will have understood how 3D rollers work, and why they’re such a big leap from their 2D predecessors!

Note: The MC-1000 comes equipped with an S-Track roller system. S-Tracks are commonly known to be the best tracking system for back massage, and that’s because they are able to so tightly contour to the spine’s natural “S” shape. The only downside with S-Tracks is that their tracking coverage is limited, so the rollers are only able to traverse so far.

#2 7 Different Massage Techniques!

When talking massage chairs, most people tend to confuse massage techniques with auto massage programs. They are not the same thing.

Massage programs are automatic modes pre-programmed into the chair that can be activated from the remote control; massage techniques on the other hand are the actual massage strokes that are employed in each of the massage modes.

Which are more important, massage modes or massage techniques? It’s hard to pick one over the other as both kinda tie in. If you have a lot of auto modes with few massage techniques, the modes won’t be as effective. Similarly if you have many massage techniques but few auto modes, it might get a little boring over time for the user.

That being said, the MC-1000 has a total of 7 massage techniques. These are kneading, tapping, knocking, shiatsu, finger kneading, back rub, and a combination of kneading and tapping.

TruMedic MC-1000 Massage Techniques

The MC-1000 can also perform air compression massage. Compression massage is achieved through the use of pulsating airbags. These airbags (essentially empty pouches) simultaneously inflate/deflate with compressed air, squeezing nearby muscle and tissue.

Now that we know all of the techniques this chair can perform, how does it differ from a massage provided by a trained therapist?

Well this is a very hard question to answer and that’s mostly because there’s so much variability when it comes to what a trained therapist can do. Another way to look at it is what my hands can do is not the same what someone else’s hands can do. Generally speaking however, all of the techniques shown above can be easily done by most trained massage therapists.

#3 6 Auto Modes To Pick From

I mentioned earlier that both massage techniques and auto modes are important considerations when selecting a massage chair. Auto modes offers a user the convenience of only pushing a button or two, and then directly being able to sit back, relax, and massage.

Auto modes also ensure the user experience remains exciting/refreshing over the years!

What tends to happen over time is our bodies get used to the same modes with the same techniques. Just as our minds may bore over time, the exact same happens with the body. This is why it’s so important to change things up every so often, so that the various muscles in our body are continuously left guessing!

I’ve found this way in particular to be most therapeutic. Maybe there’s some actual science to support this, I haven’t a clue. If you know, drop a comment and educate us all!

The 6 auto modes on the MC-1000 are:

    • Overall—A full body routine that employs both the rollers and airbags. I see this being a really good mode to use post workout!
    • Stretch—Another full body routine that’s more centred around stretching the body. Think of it like a Thai massage!
    • Recovery—Another great post workout routine! Although this particular mode can get a little intense!
    • Pain Relief—Because it’s centred around relieving pain, you can expect some deep/intense strokes on this one.
    • Health Care—A less intense mode that makes for a great morning or mid-day massage. Expect less intense, mild strokes!
    • Rock Relax—Another mild routine that employs a gentle rocking motion while delivering massage.

TruMedic MC-1000 Auto Massage Modes

#4 Forward Sliding Functionality (AKA Space Saving Recline)

Every brand says it differently, but forward sliding functionality is the same as space saving recline. In a nutshell it’s basically the chair’s ability to slide forward on a base while reclining backwards.

Why would anyone want to have a chair that slides forward? Why is this important?

It’s important because it saves a ton of space, because now you don’t need to be super concerned about placing the chair close to the wall. Osaki/Titan/Apex brands are well known to have space saving recline which only requires up to 2” to the wall. This chair is able to recline up to 4 inches from the back of the wall.

TruMedic MC-1000 Space Saving

It might not be as important, but you will need about 12 inches from the front of the chair to the wall (or next obstruction). This front clearance is probably not as important because in most cases, people will have lots of room in the front. I think having a foot (12 inches) of clearance is probably too tight to get out even!

#5 38 Airbags Designed To Squeeze Every Muscle!

38 airbags for a chair that costs as little as this, definitely a good deal if you ask me!

What are airbags anyways and are they important?

Airbags are simply empty pouches that are located in various areas of a massage chair such as the arms, hands, feet, calves, hips etc. Basically anywhere the rollers can’t reach to will likely be fitted with an airbag or two.

The idea is that wherever rollers are unable to massage because they can’t reach, airbags will provide the massage instead.

These empty pouches simply inflate/deflate with compressed air and “squeeze/compress” nearby muscle and tissue, thereby providing a compression style massage.

TruMedic MC-1000 Airbags

What does an airbag massage feel like?

If you’ve ever had your pulse taken at the doctors, that’s kind of what it feels like but more intense. Airbags filled with compressed air squish your arms, feet, waist etc. and in turn the circulation in those areas is improved.

Word of Caution: Always begin with low intensity settings when doing an air compression massage. Why? Because if you hike up the intensity, it can become overbearing and incredibly uncomfortable, and in some cases painful!


TruMedic InstaShiatsu MC-1000 Massage Chair Specifications

  • TruMedic MC-1000 Massage Chair Specs
  • Roller Type: S-Track
  • Roller Length: 30 Inches (Approximately)
  • Total Airbags: 38
  • Upright Dimensions: 57.5"L × 32.7"W × 47.2"H
  • Full Recline Dimensions: 68.9"L × 32.7"W × 36.2"H
  • Chair Material: Synthetic Leather
  • Height Range: 5’0 – 6’3 ft (Approximately)
  • Maximum Recommended Weight: 315 lbs


TruMedic InstaShiatsu MC-1000 Massage Chair: Pros & Cons

Pros—The Stuff I Like!
Cons—The Stuff I Don’t Like!
    • The Price!—Dare I say very very reasonably priced! For everything it can do, the MC-1000 is the true definition of a budget massage chair.
    • 3D Rollers—Kinda ties into the point I made above, but I was very surprised to learn that the MC-1000 comes packing 3D rollers. I’ll take it!
    • 7 Massage Techniques Make It A Powerful Machine!—The more techniques a massage chair has, the better! And with 7 techniques, this bad boy is more than equipped to deliver a solid massage!
    • None!—If I wanted to be really picky, I could criticise the number of auto modes the MC-1000 comes pre-programmed with. Considering its price tag, I do think that would be very harsh. Anyways, I can’t think of too much wrong in this chair, at least not at this moment in time.


Is It Worth Buying The TruMedic InstaShiatsu MC-1000 Massage Chair?

If you’re in the market for a budget 3D massage chair, you’re not gonna find too many better than the MC-1000. In terms of overall performance, workmanship, and user experience, the MC-1000 performs pretty well.

And yes of course it’s very very very reasonably priced!

That’s really all I have to say. Does the MC-1000 get 2 thumbs up from me? You bet it does! Bang for buck, check! Performance, check! Experience, check!

I hope you enjoyed reading this review post. If you did, please consider sharing on the social platforms. Otherwise, feel free to drop your comments down below should you have any questions! Have a fabulous week and we’ll see you next time!

About Eve

Just an average bloke intrigued by massage and its incredible benefits. Oh, did I mention I also own a massage chair? More on that in the blog posts!

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