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What is a Roller Table?

Of all the medical equipment in a chiropractor’s office, the roller table may be the most misunderstood by patients and practitioners alike. Should your practice be using a roller table? How do your patients benefit? And, equally to the point, where can you find a new or used roller table you can rely on? Great Lakes Imaging has the answers you seek.

What Roller Tables Do, and How They Do It

The roller table goes by several different names, including intersegmental traction table and spinal stabilizer table. By any name, its purpose is the same: to massage the spine and the discs that cushion it, alleviating compression, tension, and pain.

All roller tables make use of heavy-duty rollers that move along the spine to massage and decompress it. However, some models enhance this further by incorporating vibration and heating functions for patient comfort and improved circulation.

Roller Table Pros and Cons For Your Practice

As with any other treatment modality, there is some disagreement as to the exact benefits and drawbacks of a roller table. Let’s take an in-depth look so you can make an informed decision.

Roller table benefits

First, let’s look at how your patients—and by extension, your practice—may benefit from a roller table.

  • Pre-treatment warmup: A chiropractic adjustment is more prone to “take” if the patient is properly prepared beforehand by loosening up muscle groups that have been tightened by misuse or misalignment.
  • Time management: Busy practices and double-booking can lead to long wait times for your patients. Frustration increases tension, which in turn makes adjustment less effective, so putting a patient on a rolling table instead of a chair in your waiting room is often a better use of your time and theirs.
  • Post-treatment cool down: On the other hand, you may be using other methods to prepare your patients for adjustment, including infrared or moist heat, electrical stimulation, or massage. A rolling table still has its place in your practice, since it allows for a period of rest during which the spine can settle into its adjusted state.

Many patients and practitioners also report a wide range of other benefits, from the restoration of a normal spinal curve to stress reduction, improved balance, an increased range of motion, and better circulation of spinal fluid.

Roller table drawbacks

With all of this being said, some chiropractors are decidedly agnostic about roller tables or find their effects to be largely a placebo. In Chiropractic Economics, an informal survey of chiropractors returned decidedly mixed opinions. One pointed out that not all patients will enjoy the roller table experience, and that the treatment isn’t right for every patient in any event. Another advocates a combination of massage, rest, and deep breathing post-treatment, finding this more effective than a roller table.

In this respect, at least, chiropractic is like any other form of medicine; the treatment chosen is a judgment call based on how you feel your patient will benefit most.

Bottom Line: Is this right for your practice?

No single piece of equipment will be right for every practice—our range of chiropractic treatment tables is testament enough to that—and roller tables are no exception. It’s best to evaluate this equipment against your treatment style and talk to patients and colleagues alike as you make your decision. If you have questions as you’re arriving at a decision, you’re always welcome to reach out to Great Lakes Imaging.

Browse Our Roller Tables and Chiropractic Equipment in Southeast Michigan

From treatment tables to smaller essentials like hydrocollators and air filtration systems, Great Lakes Imaging serves the chiropractic equipment needs of a diverse clientele throughout the Detroit metro and the Great Lakes region. For sales, maintenance, medical imaging, design services, and more, we encourage you to get in touch today.