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Acupressure Mat: What is It, and How Do I Use It?

WTHN Team/25.05.22

WTHN Acupressure Mat

While you’ve probably heard of acupressure before and perhaps have even tried different mats like yoga mats or posture mats, have you ever used the two methods combined? If not, you’re in for a real treat! Common acupressure mat benefits include relief from muscle pain, headaches, and stress, as well as deeper sleep, increased energy, and better circulation.


Acupressure mats are readily available, and so many people have opted to try this fantastic method already to help target pressure points. Acupressure mats are powerful tools, and you can enjoy all they have to offer both at home and on the go. 


Today, we’ll provide a deeper understanding of what these mats are and how to use an acupressure mat, including acupressure mat positions and benefits.


Let’s see what they’re all about!

What Is an Acupressure Mat

Acupressure mats are widely accessible and provide the same acupressure therapy benefits at home as when you use the acupressure massage services of a specialist. But what is an acupressure mat, exactly? 


These special mats are made from cotton or similar materials, and normally feature small plastic spikes that stimulate targeted areas of the body, including acupressure points. They also stimulate your skin for additional relaxation and health benefits. Acupressure mats are most often used on the floor, but can also be placed on a desk chair or car seat, for example.


Our clients who use an acupressure mat often find relief from back, neck, and shoulder pain, not to mention support with sleep quality and energy levels. One of the most sought-after benefits of an acupressure mat is stress relief, and we think a mat session is perfect for after a long day at work or before heading to bed.


Since your weight is evenly distributed on the mat, there’s no way for the needles to actually puncture the skin, so you don’t have to worry about any pain or injury from this holistic method of healing and energy promotion.


However, if you are among the following groups of people or have any of these conditions, using an acupressure massage mat is not advised:

  • Pregnant 
  • Nursing 
  • Have a heart condition 
  • Using blood pressure medication 
  • Have a skin infection 
  • Have open wounds

    How to Best Use an Acupressure Mat

    1. First, relax and lie down on the mat. Try to evenly position your back across the mat. Always feel free to shift or move your body as needed to find a comfortable position that best suits you. Have lower back pain? No problem! Simply bend your knees or use a pillow to prop up your knees to add elevation and pinpoint muscle tension in this problem area.
    2. Initially, the acupressure spikes may not seem super comfortable. However, simply relax, breathe, and give your body time to adjust.
    3. Once you begin to feel comfortable, lie on your mat for 20–40 minutes in order to obtain ultimate results, and get up feeling calm, rejuvenated, and relaxed. 
    Don’t spend your time eyeing the clock. The point of this session is to relax. Set a timer in the kitchen or on your phone to track your time, and listen to meditation music if possible. 


    When performing acupressure on the body, it’s particularly important that your body is evenly distributed across the mat. The pinpoints are known to be unforgiving if not used correctly, so if one area of your body is taking on greater pressure, it could cause harm or bruising to the skin.

    What Are the Benefits of an Acupressure Mat?

    There are quite a few benefits of an acupressure mat. From helping to alleviate occasional pain to helping you find your zen, here are just some of the wonderful ways that an acupressure mat can help you daily:

    • Helps with temporary neck pain relief and back pain relief
    • Helps alleviate shoulder pain and occasional soreness in the shoulder blades
    • Relieves stiff and sore muscles caused by overexertion 
    • Provides feelings of stress and tension relief after a long day
    • Improves sleep quality
    • Relieves nausea caused by bodily tightness and tension
    • Supports healthy blood flow/blood circulation 
    • Supports healthy respiration
    • Increases feelings of energy


    Is there an acupressure mat benefit you’re looking forward to most? With so many different ways this tool provides aid and relief, it’s such a great addition to your daily routine.


    While acupressure is known to provide a plethora of benefits, it should not be substituted for a needed medication or therapy prescribed by a doctor or chiropractor. Make sure to always partner with a medical professional, so they can properly treat and diagnose any of the issues you might be experiencing.

    Different Needs Call for Diverse Positions 

    Acupressure mat positions and benefits are broad and varied, so try yours multiple ways and see what works best for you. Here are some of our favorite ideas for how to use an acupressure mat.


    Back Pain

    Does your back occasionally cause you some pain from your busy day-to-day movements? Here’s how to use an acupressure mat for relief. 


    Simply place the mat on a solid, flat surface. Sit down slowly and lie all the way down on the mat. You will begin to feel warmth creep over your upper back and entire body as the small needles start working their magic. 


    Experiencing back pain a little lower? Simply roll up a towel or blanket, or grab a pillow, to place under your knees for added elevation to better support that area. 


    If there’s unwanted pain or tension in your shoulders, you can take that same towel or blanket and place it under the upper part of your back to pinpoint a different area.


    Give it about 20 minutes, and you’ll really start to feel some relief!

    Neck Pain

    A lot of times with neck pain, people will reach for a pillow rather than a mat for extra pain relief. However, an acupressure mat can provide amazing benefits you’ll never get with just a pillow. 


    If you choose to use an acupressure pillow, first lie down on a flat surface or find a tall chair or couch to sit on. Place your neck on the pillow and then adjust as you feel comfortable. You can use the pillow for about 20 minutes or until you feel a reduction in pain or discomfort. 


    If you use an acupressure mat, lower your body down slowly and tuck a rolled blanket or towel under your head. You can move it as necessary and keep pressure on it for the same amount of time as the pillow. For maximum rejuvenation, you can do this for up to 40 minutes. Remember, do what makes you feel comfortable.


    Feelings of Restlessness or Stress

    The mat not only relaxes the body – it also brings comfort and peace to your mind. You can use the mat in a similar way for back pain. Make sure to lie in a comfortable position that evenly distributes your weight for optimal results.


    For added comfort, you can use the mat on both  your bed and couch since they will be a little softer than the floor. 


    Breathe deeply and relax. You can close your eyes to bring focus to your breathing. It also helps to play music and take part in a guided meditation. Twenty-five to 40 minutes is the ideal amount of time to reap all the healing benefits of the acupressure mat. 


    Energy Boost

    For an energy boost, do the opposite of the above in terms of time usage. The less time spent on the mat, the more rejuvenated (rather than relaxed) you’ll feel in the long run. 


    Lie on your mat where you feel comfortable, and set a timer for no more than 20 to 25 minutes. Try to keep your mat on the floor instead of your bed, especially if you’re feeling sleepy. The moment you get up, you’ll feel that instant rejuvenation you’ve been craving. 


    Best of all? It’s all-natural energy! Now, there’s no need to go and grab a coffee or shot of espresso! Try this method  during your midday slump and experience the energy-boosting difference! 


    Deeper Sleep

    Need better sleep? The benefits of an acupressure mat may help. Be sure to stay on the mat for longer than 20 minutes. If more time is needed, stay on the mat until it starts to truly induce those desired sleepy feelings. 


    Just make sure the mat is eventually removed and you don’t sleep on it all night. Too much of a good thing has a habit of bringing harm. Plus, if you move in the middle of the night and put too much pressure on one area, it could cause unnecessary bruising or puncturing of the skin. 


    Make this a relaxing part of your nighttime routine to help improve your sleep through the night.


    Feet and Reflexology

    Work on your feet all day? Then this method is definitely for you! These mats are meant to help alleviate pain in your feet, especially if you’ve been wearing uncomfortable shoes or walking all day. 


    Feel free to use the mat or pillow, too! Either will work. When standing on the mat, it might even feel similar to having a foot massage. And who doesn’t love a good foot massage?


    Similar Methods are Available

    If you truly feel an acupressure mat is not for you, no worries! There are plenty of other ways to enjoy relief comparable to the benefits of an acupressure mat.  

    These are the four other holistic methods that can be utilized similarly and drive closely related results:

      Our Final Thoughts 

      So, what’s the consensus? Is an acupressure mat a good fit for you? 


      With the ease of use of this holistic tool and all its health benefits, there are plenty of exciting reasons why you could add some “mat time” into your busy schedule. 


      It’s a holistic healing method that aids in your journey toward a healthier lifestyle. Plus, there are little to no side effects to affect your daily routine in a negative way. So, give it a try


      Just lay down, relax and soak up those proven acupuncture mat benefits!


      1. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/acupressure-mat#do-they-work
      2. https://awakeandmindful.com/how-to-use-an-acupressure-mat/
      3. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/acupressure-mat 
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