Panasonic EP MA10 Review – Massage Chair Report - Consumer Files

Panasonic EP MA10 Review – Massage Chair Report

In Massage Chairs by Consumer FilesLeave a CommentLast Updated: June 21st, 2020

Panasonic EP MA10 Massage Chair

  • Ease of Use
  • Overall Massage Quality
  • Customization Options
  • Value for the Money

Summary

Though a great massage chair for neck and shoulder massage, the EP MA10 lacks features you can find on other similarly-priced massage chairs. Some of these are the foot rollers, zero gravity and heat therapy.

Also, it has limited customization options. But if you’re looking for a powerful roller massage and additional features like leg stretching, the EP MA10 delivers.

4.1

The Panasonic EP MA10 is an entry-level massage chair that costs between $2,000 to $3,000, though it can be found deeply discounted on sites like Amazon. This massage chair doesn’t offer some of the same features you find on similarly-priced massage chairs. However, it excels at a few key features like neck and shoulder roller massage and leg stretch. In this review, Panasonic EP MA10 review, we’re explaining each feature, what it’s missing, and comparing it to a similarly-priced massage chair.

Features of the Panasonic EP MA10 Massage Chair

Let’s take a look at the features of the Panasonic EP MA10...

Shoulder Height Detection

Massage chairs — especially those over $2,000 —typically feature some sort of body scan technology. Without it, you have to manually adjust the position of the rollers or run the risk of your massage hitting too high or too low. The more entry-level the massage chair, the more simple its scan is, which usually means it detects your shoulder height, but that’s it. That’s what you get on the Panasonic EP MA10 massage chair: shoulder height detection.

The shoulder height scan begins when you select any massage program. During the scan, the rollers will move up and down your back lightly tapping to locate your shoulders. You can fine-tune the position of the rollers by using up and down arrows on the remote. The shoulder height position can be adjusted at any time during your massage.

Dual Roller Massage

The Panasonic EP MA10 has dual rollers — two sets of two — designed to mimic the feeling of two thumbs and two hands. Its rollers perform five techniques: neck knead, neck shiatsu, knead, roll, and tap, which we’ll go into more detail about later in the review.

One of the standout features on the EP MA10 is its Spinal Chinese massage technique that allows the rollers to treat the hard-to-reach and often neglected areas of the cervical spine and shoulders.

The cervical spine is the area from the base of the skull to the top of the shoulders. According to ancient Chinese medicine, this area is a primary source of back pain due to the tension caused from supporting the head. Using a spinal Chinese massage technique, the Panasonic EP MA10 can actually alleviate tension in the neck and shoulders to a degree many other massage chairs can’t match.

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Calf and Foot Massage

At the lower portion of the chair is a calf and foot massager ottoman. Inside the ottoman, 14 airbags line the sides of the calves and feet. Air massage is a typical massage chair feature because airbags can go where and do what rollers can’t. For example, on the EP MA10, airbags in the ottoman inflate to hold the feet in place for the leg stretch program.

During the leg stretch program, as the airbags hold the legs, the ottoman raises and lowers at varying degrees to stretch the lower back, hips, thighs and calves. The 15-minute program can be used on its own or with any manual massage.

The main therapeutic benefit of air massage is increased circulation. As the airbags move blood and stagnant fluid from the muscles, they inflate and introduce new blood (and therefore oxygen and nutrients) when they deflate.

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Under the feet in the ottoman, acupressure plates with nodes protrude into the feet. As airbags surrounding the feet inflate, they press the soles onto the nodes to create a powerful acupressure treatment. If the nodes feel too intense, you can wear a pair of thick socks or remove the plates altogether.

The ottoman can be rotated once you finish your leg massage. Pull the lever on the side to flip the ottoman and reveal a cushioned footrest. This feature helps the Panasonic EP MA10 double as a regular recliner and “disguises” the massage components when not in use.

LCD Remote with Pedal Stand

All of the programs and manual mode options are controlled using the remote. The functions are clearly labeled and have their own buttons — no cycling through to find the right setting. An LCD screen at the top of the remote displays the active settings so you always know what’s selected — intensity, technique, time remaining, etc.

For an affordable massage chair, the remote on the EP MA10 is a really nice feature. It has its own pedestal stand that keeps it next to the chair and out of the way when you’re enjoying your massage. And in our opinion, it’s one of the easiest to use.

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Leather-Like Upholstery

On the outside of the Panasonic EP MA10 is a high-quality leather-like material made from polyurethane. It’s soft and flexible like leather, but highly abrasion and stain resistant. So, keeping the chair clean is easy and typically only requires a wipe with a water-based cleaner or a quick vacuuming.

Compact Design

The Panasonic EP MA10 weighs only 144 pounds. While that may not seem lightweight, for a massage chair, it is. Its compact design and the addition of castor wheels, make the EP MA10 easy to move.

Therefore, you don’t have to call your family or friends over every time you want to adjust the location. Its compact size also means it won’t take up too much space in your hous. This is good news if you live in an apartment or want to have the chair in a smaller room.

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Massage Techniques and Auto Programs on the Panasonic EP MA10

Like we mentioned above, the Panasonic EP MA10 features five massage techniques. Let’s look at what each technique offers:

  • Neck Knead. Feels like two thumbs repeatedly kneading in small circular motions from the lower to the upper neck.*
  • Roll. Feels like palms applying pressure as they move from the lower back to the neck. The movement extends 53.5 centimeters up and down the upper body. Panasonic recommends this technique stretching the back muscles.
  • Knead. Feels like two thumbs and two sets of fingers squeezing in unison as they work their way up the back and neck.
  • Neck Shiatsu. Feels like two thumbs repeatedly pressing upward from the lower to the upper neck.*
  • Tap. Feels like the sides of two hands rhythmically tapping to relax the muscles. Panasonic recommends this technique for use on the sensitive muscles of the neck or as a finishing massage.
  • *Both of the neck-specific techniques fall under the “Spinal Chinese Massage Technique.”

All of the massage techniques are part of the manual mode options on the EP MA10 and can be used on their own or added to other massage features like calf and foot massage.

Auto Massage Programs

  • Deep Massage. A vigorous and deep massage that uses a combination of kneading, shiatsu, and tapping techniques to treat the muscles between the neck and lower back.
  • Swedish Massage. A mild massage without any tapping or stimulating motions to promote deep relaxation. A good program to use before bed.
  • Lower Back Massage. A firm massage that targets the lower back to relieve stiffness.
  • Neck/Shoulder Massage. A strong massage that targets the neck and shoulders to release tension around the cervical vertebrae.

If you’d rather skip the manual techniques and enjoy a fully-automated massage program, the Panasonic EP MA10 has four to choose from. Each auto program is 15 minutes long. The four programs are:

Manual Mode and Customization Options on the Panasonic EP MA10 Massage Chair

The Panasonic EP MA10 massage chair has a few manual mode options which is important because they give you control over settings like intensity, location, and technique. So even if you aren’t thrilled with the massage programs, you can always create your own using the manual mode options.

Let’s look at what’s available on the EP MA10.

  1. 1
    INDEPENDENT MASSAGE INTENSITY ADJUSTMENTS: On the EP MA10, you can adjust the intensity of the upper body and lower body massages independently. So if you have a stiff lower back and want to strengthen your back massage, you don’t also have to increase the intensity of your foot massage. Each area can be adjusted up to three levels. 
  2. 2
    LEG AND FOOT MASSAGE: Turn the leg and calf air massage on, off, or add it to any program.
  3. 3
    LEG STRETCH: Turn the leg stretch on, off, or add it to any program.
  4. 4
    ROLLER POSITION: A set of up and down arrows lets you control the position of the rollers.
  5. 5
    REMOVABLE PADDING: A removable head pillow allows you to increase or decrease the intensity of your neck massage.
  6. 6
    ROLLER WIDTH: A set of sideways arrows allows you to control the width of the rollers up to three levels during the tapping, rolling, and neck shiatsu massage techniques.

So what does creating a manual massage look like? Let us illustrate:

  • Select one of the five massage techniques.
  • Then, move the rollers to the area you want to be massaged. If you’re using the tapping, rolling, or neck shiatsu techniques, adjust the width of the rollers to be closer to or farther from your spine.
  • Next, adjust the intensity of the massage.

The massage will last for 15 minutes. And that’s it! It’s a relatively simple set of manual mode options.

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What’s Missing the Panasonic EP MA10 Chair

The Panasonic EP MA10 has a lot to offer, especially if you want a massage chair that can deliver a powerful neck and shoulder massage. But for the price, there are features that you would want or expect, but won’t find, including:

  • Mechanical Foot Rollers. The EP MA10 has acupressure plates, but no foot rollers. A popular feature, mechanical foot rollers provide a spinning, kneading massage to the bottoms of the feet. And their intensity can usually be controlled and adjusted with the remote.
  • Upper Body and Arm Air Massage. On the EP MA10, there are no airbags in theb upper portion of the chair, which means no outer shoulder, seat, hip, or arm and hand massage.
  • Heat Therapy. Unlike its brothers the EP MA70 and the EP MA73 (though to be fair, they’re way more expensive), the EP MA10 doesn’t have heated massage rollers. In fact, it doesn’t have heat therapy at all, which is a standard feature even on entry-level massage chairs.
  • Zero Gravity Recline. Another popular feature you won’t find on the EP MA10 is Zero Gravity. In this position, it reclines the body so that its weight is evenly distributed across the backrest while the legs are elevated at or above the heart.  In the Zero Gravity position, upward pressure is removed, helping the neck, spine, and back muscles decompress and relax. Since the body is reclined, its weight helps hold it against the backrest for an even deeper massage.
  • Memory Programs. With a memory program, you can save your manual massage settings — essentially creating a brand new auto program. Unfortunately, there are no memory programs on the Panasonic EP MA10, which means each time you use the chair you have to reselect the manual massage settings.

Panasonic EP MA10 vs. Osaki OS 4000

The Osaki OS 4000 is perhaps the most popular Osaki model. It costs between $2,000 to $3,000 — the same price range as the Panasonic EP MA10. However, it has a lot of features you won’t find on the EP MA10, including:

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● Zero Gravity. Like we mentioned above, the Zero Gravity reclined position helps the muscles relax and increases massage intensity.

● Arm Air Massage. Airbags in the arm massagers inflate and deflate to compress the tops and bottoms of the forearms and hands.

● Hip and Lumbar Squeeze. Airbags located next to the hips and thighs squeeze to compress the lumbar and pelvic areas.

● Auto Leg Scan. When you sit in the massage chair, the ottoman will extend out and retract to fit the ottoman to your leg length.

● Shoulder Air Massage. Airbags on the outsides of the shoulder press and squeeze the shoulders and also hold the body against the backrest for roller massage.

● Lower Back Heat Therapy. Heating pads warm the lower back, which increases blood flow as well as relaxes the muscles.

● Vibration Massage. A high-frequency vibration plate in the seat massages the buttock and back of the thighs.

Which Massage Chair is Better?

Considering the Osaki OS 4000 is so close to the Panasonic EP MA10 price, the additional features on the OS 4000 make it a compelling buy. Even so, the Osaki OS 4000 can’t compete with the neck and shoulder massage on the EP MA10. So if you’re interested in getting as much massage for the money as possible, the Osaki OS 4000 is a good choice. However, if you want a massage chair that excels in a few key areas, the Panasonic EP MA10 is the way to go.

Panasonic EP MA10 Massage Chair Specifications

Chair dimensions (reclined)

28.3”H x 32.3”W x 71.3”D

Chair dimensions (upright)

47.2”H x 32.3”W x 48.0”D

Recommended maximum user weight

264 lbs

Recommended user height

5'0" to 6'3"

Required Recline Clearance

16”

Power Consumption

120W

Chair weight

144 lbs

About Panasonic


Panasonic was founded in 1918 in Japan by industrialist and “god of management,” Konosuke Matsushita. Since its inception, Panasonic has produced high-quality, low-cost consumer electronics with the mission to “enhance the quality of life throughout the world.” Today, they continue to produce products like televisions, digital cameras, and massage chairs.

Panasonic introduced its first massage chair in 1969. They were the first massage company recognized by the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) for offering credible chiropractic supplements. And though they’ve moved their manufacturing to China, their massage chairs are still designed and engineered in Japan.

Final Thoughts on Panasonic EP MA10 Review 

The Panasonic EP MA10 offers some fundamental massage features. However, unless you’re looking for a massage chair that specifically focuses on neck and shoulder massage, you might be a little disappointed. The EP MA10 doesn’t have other popular features like Zero Gravity, heat therapy, arm massage, or foot rollers. But if you want a quality neck and shoulder roller massage and the peace of mind of a reputable brand, the EP MA10 is a solid option that will likely perform for years to come.


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Panasonic EP MA10 Review – Massage Chair Report was last modified: June 21st, 2020 by Consumer Files