The science behind zero-gravity chairs and why they make you feel weightless

Best Zero Gravity Chair

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Whether you’re lying around by your pool or at a campfire, zero-gravity chairs offer comfort and support while suspending your body in a neutral position so that you experience a sense of weightlessness. This process of “letting go” allows you to relax more deeply and release tension. It’s great for people who suffer from neck and back pain.

Yet even the best zero-gravity chairs don’t actually defy gravity — so don’t worry, you won’t float away. The name of the chair relates to the posture you assume when you recline in it. It’s known to be the same position astronauts take during liftoff. The zero-gravity position helps them circumvent the intense stress during the sudden surges in gravity while exiting Earth’s gravitational pull. In fact, NASA invented zero-gravity technology!

Scientists have found that a trunk-to-thigh angle of 128 degrees is where the musculoskeletal system is in its most relaxed condition. So if you are suspended in the zero-gravity position, no gravity is acting on the body. A zero-gravity recliner works by evenly distributing your weight across the chair.

Enhanced digestion and correctly aligned vertebrae are just a couple of benefits. This positioning also promotes better circulation throughout the body, which can soothe swelling and reduce painful varicose veins. Reduced swelling helps minimize stress on your heart, making it function better. Another neat benefit is that your lungs can expand more fully because of the unique angle.


The best zero-gravity chairs will suit your needs. Some even offer cup holders, built-in tables and sunshades. You might prefer one that’s lightweight and easy to fold depending on how you’ll be using it, like if you’ll take it with you while camping. Chairs that only require occasional spot cleaning with a damp cloth make them easy to care for.

These chairs should be durable enough to withstand the outdoor elements. Some chairs might feature UV resistance, allowing you to keep them in direct sunlight. Look for ones with sturdy mesh fabric that dry out quickly after rainfall. If the fabric is puffy and full of batting, which is great during cooler seasons, you’ll want to make sure it’s waterproof. Remember, black fabric absorbs sunlight, so you might opt for a different color if your yard is particularly sunny.

For example, this portable camp chair from Timber Ridge (shown above) includes a padded seat, removable headrest and a side table with a cup holder.

You should feel comfortable sitting even when you’re upright in the best zero-gravity chairs. People like how supported their back feels in this furniture. Pay attention to the weight capacity and whether or not it offers lumbar or head support. Like these Best Choice lounge reclining chairs, the best zero-gravity chairs will glide into a lockable position that’s ergonomically ideal.


After years of heavy use, you may need to replace the chair’s elastic cords because they do wear out. They tend to slacken over time due to their mechanism of operation. Some customers find their chairs squeak during use. Check the reviews to make sure it’s truly noiseless if you think that’ll bother you.

Are zero-gravity chairs better than regular lounge chairs? Do tension and stress float away while in use? The answers to these questions are unique to each consumer. Some will enjoy the feeling of weightlessness, but others may prefer to keep both their feet on the ground.

About the Author

Emily O'Brien

Emily is a freelance writer who loves connecting the dots among facts and finding obscure little details to weave in throughout her work. Whether she's interviewing Olympic athletes, small business owners, dessert cookbook writers, or world-renowned architects, she's passionate about shining the spotlight on good people doing remarkable work. More.

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