All About the Zero Gravity Position

An astronaut floating in space

“Zero Gravity position” has got to be the most popular term associated with ergonomic chairs. Especially, massage chairs. I suspect it must have something to do with the cool name, but it’s actually a pretty simple concept.

Zero gravity (or “anti-gravity”) is the name of a posture in which the massage chair tilts back and elevates your legs above your heart. This is supposed to provide a feeling of “weightlessness” that helps with relaxation.

In the Zero Gravity position the chair tilts back to provide a relaxing feeling of “weightlessness”

The zero gravity position was first “discovered” back in the 1970s, thanks to the data collected about the crew members living on NASA’s Skylab Station.

This info is pretty interesting as a whole, so I’m just going to quote directly from NASA’s website:

“Measurement recorded in orbit by NASA astronauts have shown, in its most unstressed and relaxed state, the human body assumes a trunk-to-thigh angle of 128 degrees.

This zero-gravity posture was found to place the musculoskeletal system in its most rested condition. Specifically, this natural posture fosters a non-stressed muscle system, correctly aligned vertebrae, better breathing, improved digestion and enhanced circulation.”

Illustration of the zero gravity position

The zero gravity position distributes your weight evenly over the chair’s surface. One benefit of this, besides the weightlessness, is that it promotes blood circulation in the legs and reduces swelling. This is because, as you can see in the diagram above, in the zero-gravity posture your legs are elevated over the heart.

Conclusion

The zero gravity posture:

  • Was first “discovered” back in the 1970s by NASA.
  • Benefits:
    • Places the musculoskeletal system in its most rested condition.
    • Aligned vertebrae.
    • Better breathing.
    • Improved digestion,
    • Enhanced circulation.

Last updated on August 31, 2018.