Elderly Recliner Chairs: Buyer’s Guide to Comfort & Safety

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Recliner chairs are worthwhile investments for the elderly. Check out this article to learn the types of recliners, our top picks, and a buying guide!

When it comes to relaxation and comfort, there’s no age limit! However, as we inevitably get older, our bodies are no longer as agile, requiring a little more care. Here’s where recliners or geriatric chairs come in handy.

The golden years of life deserve the golden standard in seating. The best recliners understand and cater to the needs of elderly people. But with so many options in the market, finding your perfect recliner match can get overwhelming.

That’s why I’m here to illustrate everything you need to know about recliner chairs for the elderly. Get ready to recline and unwind with style!

Understanding the Needs of the Elderly

Weman helping elderly - Recliner chairs for the elderly

When it comes to recliner chairs for the elderly, it’s important to consider a comfortable and convenient recliner that accommodates your frame.

Elderly individuals often face mobility challenges. It’s more difficult to arrive at a standing position from a seated position and vice versa now than it was 40 years ago!

Your body is also more fragile when you’re in your senior years. You’ll have to keep the risk of accidents or falls in mind now.

With that said, many recliners come with features like easy-to-reach levers, power lift options, and massage functions. Ergonomics is also front-and-center, with elderly-friendly recliners providing optimal lumbar support, cushioning, and headrests.

Furthermore, recliners are built with sturdy frames and non-slip materials to ensure comfort, relaxation, and safety for every elderly person.

Physical Challenges Faced by the Elderly

Have you noticed your back feeling more sore nowadays? Aging brings about a variety of physical challenges, which makes choosing the right recliner chair all the more important.

Here are some physical challenges a recliner can alleviate:

  • Arthritis and Joint Pain – Recliners equipped with built-in heat and massage features can provide soothing relief to aching joints. These help seniors sit pain-free.
  • Poor Circulation – Limited mobility can lead to poor circulation, causing discomfort and swelling. Recliners with adjustable positions enable users to elevate their feet, promoting better blood flow and reducing swelling in the legs and ankles.
  • Back Problems – Recliners with proper lumbar support and customizable reclining angles can alleviate back pain by distributing weight evenly and reducing pressure on the spine.

Importance of Comfort and Support for Seniors

Imagine what an electric recliner chair with well-padded armrests on massage mode can do for you. It’s the perfect recipe for a cozy relaxation spot for reading or watching TV, ultimately improving their well-being.

Recliners are also designed to help the elderly maintain their independence. With easy-to-operate mechanisms and comfortable seating options, seniors can sit and stand without assistance, preserving their dignity. In general, seniors who can relax and unwind in a comfortable chair are likelier to experience reduced stress and improved mental health. This leads to a happier and more fulfilling life.

How We Tested The Recliner Chairs

In our commitment to helping seniors find the perfect recliner chair, our evaluation process was meticulous and tailored to their unique needs. We collaborated with healthcare professionals, including physical therapists and geriatric specialists, to ensure our assessment criteria were in line with what is most beneficial for the elderly.

Real-Life Scenarios: Each chair was tested in environments replicating typical home settings, considering factors like ease of getting in and out of the chair, comfort during extended use, and the simplicity of operating control mechanisms.

Senior Feedback: Critically, we involved a group of elderly individuals in our testing process. Their firsthand experience and feedback on aspects like comfort, support, and usability were invaluable in our assessments.

Safety and Durability: We conducted rigorous safety checks, focusing on stability and strength, to ensure the chairs could reliably support various weights and movements. Durability tests were also performed to guarantee long-term reliability.

Comparative Analysis: Our team compared numerous models side-by-side, evaluating them for features that matter most to seniors, such as lift functions, recline angles, cushioning, and additional benefits like heating or massage functions.

Transparency and Trust: We maintain a strict policy of independence and transparency. Our reviews are unbiased, with no affiliations to manufacturers. Our focus is solely on providing honest, comprehensive advice to help seniors make informed choices.

Our testing process is designed to be thorough and empathetic to the needs of the elderly, ensuring that when we recommend a recliner chair, it’s because it truly stands out for its comfort, safety, and ease of use.

Types of Recliner Chairs for the Elderly

Your ultimate satisfaction and comfort may depend on your recliner type of choice. Each recliner type caters to specific needs and preferences.

Here are some common types of recliner chairs tailored for seniors.

Power Lift Recliners

A power lift recliner is designed to assist people with mobility issues. They feature a motorized lifting mechanism that gently tilts the chair forward, helping the user stand up or sit down with minimal effort.

A standard power lift chair provides ample cushioning and support too. Seniors can sit comfortably and change to infinite positioning, even during extended periods of sitting.

Power lift chairs reduce the need for assistance when transitioning between sitting and standing positions, making them a preferred choice among seniors who desire independence.

CANMOV Power Lift Recliner Chair for the Elderly

CANMOV is a brand I have full confidence in. Their products are made with excellent quality, durability, and functionality in mind, so I had to give their power lift chair a shot!

First things first, this recliner is a great assistive device. It can push the entire chair up and down to help you stand up with just a press of a button. You can adjust the tilt to whatever angle you feel comfortable with too.

And if you want to keep essential items like your TV remote, reading glasses, or phone within arm’s reach, a side pocket is conveniently placed on the chair.

The CANMOV power lift recliner’s backrest measures 24.8 inches, with a seat depth of 21.3 inches. I appreciate how its backrest provides perfect support for your entire hips and legs. Goodbye back aches!

Plus, if you’re planning to unwind all day, the CANMOV’s padded armrests and backrest made of high-quality plush add to the overall relaxing experience.

Wall Hugger Recliners

If you’ve got limited space in your living area, a wall-hugger recliner is the ideal type for you. Wall hugger recliners, as the name suggests, can be placed closer to the wall.

Unlike other recliners, wall-huggers recline forward instead of backward, saving valuable floor space.

U-MAX Recliner Power Lift Wall Hugger

The feature-rich U-MAX Recliner is excellent if you don’t have enough space for anything larger. That’s because this recliner can be adjusted even with only 10 inches of clearance between the wall and the chair.

The U-MAX can recline up to 140 degrees, with the footrest positioned to your liking. The chair also comes with two cup holders and a huge side pocket large enough to store your drinks and magazines.

Furthermore, among the many massaging recliners on the market, I like U-MAX’s heat and vibrating massage function the most. You can customize its adjustable massage mode for pulse, press, wave, auto, or normal. It can even focus on either your legs, thighs, lumbar, or back.

Plus, since this chair’s made from soft leather, and its armrests and backrest padded with an extra thick sponge, I got to enjoy ultimate comfort. Sometimes, I even drift off to sleep without knowing!

Speaking about sleep, you can set a timer of 15, 30, or 60 minutes so you don’t need to worry about wasting energy while relaxing.

Massage Recliners

An electric recliner chair features motorized mechanisms that allow users to adjust the reclining position with the recliner’s remote control.

Electric recliners usually either come with one motor or two motors. Single-motor recliners use the same motor for moving the backrest, footrest, and seat. 

Dual motors, on the other hand, allow users to adjust the backrest and footrest separately to arrive at the ideal position. Moreover, electric recliners come with tons of added features like USB ports, heating, and massage modes for convenience and pleasure. Unfortunately, these features add up. Electric recliner chairs tend to cost more.

MCombo Electric Power Lift Recliner Chair Sofa with Massage and Heat for the Elderly

The MCombo Electric Power Lift Recliner is one of the best recliners I’ve ever tried. They’re great at assisting seniors with their counter-balanced lift mechanism and a TUV-certified actuator. 

The chair helps me stand up without stressing my back and knees. Its recline and footrest also adjust very smoothly, thanks to the remote control.

You can also choose from 8 vibrating points and 1 lumbar built-in heat function with fixed timers of 10, 20, or 30 minutes. 

Another feature I appreciate on this chair is the availability of USB ports. The USB port keeps your devices like iPhones and iPads charged while you relax. Alongside the USB charging ports, you’ll find not one side pocket, but two!

Also, with two cup holders, it’s easy to be tempted to stay seated and relaxed all day with all your essentials just within arm’s reach.

Plus, if aesthetics is a deciding factor, you’ll be happy to know that the MCombo is made with quality black faux leather that matches many home interiors. What’s not to love?

Rocker Recliners

Rocker recliners combine the benefits of a rocking chair with those of a recliner. They have easy maneuvering features that allow for a gentle, soothing rocking motion that’s relaxing for seniors.

These chairs can also be adjusted to various angles, making them versatile for different preferences.

ANJ Oversized Manual Rocker Chair

It’s not always easy to find a chair that fits comfortably to your size. Good thing the ANJ rocker chair doesn’t disappoint!

The ANJ accommodates elderly big and tall people quite nicely with its 39-inch seat width. It’s also made of breathable leather for the utmost comfort.

This all-in-one chair swivels, glides, and reclines to your liking. I’ve found it’s easy to change positions, including its footrest.

Although the ANJ is a manual rocker recliner, it’s quite easy to operate. Simply pull out the handle on the right, and you can lean back just as nicely. You even have 3 angles from 90° – 150° to choose from.

Other notable features I found pleasant were its side pockets to keep remotes and other essentials, along with its antiskid upholstery. That’s comfort and safety at its finest!

Key Features to Consider When Buying Recliner Chairs for the Elderly

Recliner chaird for the elderly

It’s crucial to pick the right recliner, considering you’ll spend lots of time on this chair.

Here’s what you should consider to ensure that your chair meets your specific needs.

Size and Dimensions

You don’t want to buy a recliner only to realize it doesn’t fit in your room! Make sure to consider the recliner’s size and compare it to where you’d like to place it.

Ensure that the chair’s dimensions, both when upright and fully reclined, fit comfortably without overcrowding the room.

Material and Upholstery

How do you prefer your chair’s upholstery? Do you look for a modern design or a timeless look? Although comfort and functionality are top priorities, it’s also good to consider the make and look of your chair.

Choose a recliner chair with upholstery that’s both comfortable and easy to clean. Breathable microporous fabric and leatherette are popular choices for their comfort and low maintenance.

Also, look for materials that allow for good airflow. This prevents sweating and discomfort during prolonged use. Oftentimes, real leather recliners aren’t the most breathable.

Weight Capacity

Check the weight capacity of the recliner chair to ensure it can safely support the weight of the intended user.

Many recliners designed for the elderly have weight capacities ranging from 250 to 500 pounds or more.

Safety Features

Go for recliners with sturdy frames and anti-tip features to provide stability in a reclined position, and to reduce the risk of accidents.

If you’re using an electric recliner, look for those equipped with emergency battery backup systems. These systems can be a lifesaver in case of power outages, allowing the user to return the chair to an upright position safely.

Additional Features

Other recliners have added features you may find handy, like the following.

  • Lift functions gently tilt the chair forward, helping the user stand up.
  • Massage and heat functions provide relief for sore muscles and joint pain.
  • A user-friendly remote control allows seniors to adjust the recliner’s angle, lift function, and massage settings with ease.
  • Side Pockets or storage compartments hold essentials like TV remotes, reading materials, or medications.
  • Built-in cup holders can be a handy addition, preventing spills and keeping beverages within easy reach.

USB charging ports integrated into the recliner allow seniors to charge their devices conveniently.

Benefits of Recliner Chairs for the Elderly

Let’s delve into the key advantages of recliner chairs for the elderly.

Improved Comfort and Relaxation

A recliner is engineered to provide customized support. Seniors can adjust the chair’s position to find the perfect angle for relaxation.

It even allows users to elevate their legs to reduce pressure on the lower back and improve blood circulation, enhancing overall comfort.

Enhanced Mobility and Independence

A recliner is equipped with user-friendly mechanisms, meaning you’ll only need a remote control to access its functions.

The effortless operation of recliners also makes the chair easier to get in and out of. Your recliner can minimize the physical strain associated with traditional chairs, making daily activities more manageable.

Pain Relief and Health Benefits

Massage recliners with heat functions can also provide relief from joint pain, muscle tension, and arthritis.

Plus, recliners with proper lumbar region support promote good posture by maintaining the natural curve of the spine. Reclining positions, on the other hand, help reduce edema or swelling in the legs and ankles, a common issue among seniors with poor circulation.

How to Choose the Right Recliner Chair for the Elderly

Choosing among the best recliners requires careful consideration. Here are some essential steps to help you decide.

Assessing Individual Needs

The first thing you need to do is consider your or your elderly loved one’s health conditions. For example, if you have severe arthritis or get sore muscles often, choose a recliner with massage and heat functions.

For mobility issues, a lift chair with easy-to-use mechanisms is a practical choice. Conversely, a standard recliner should suffice for those with more independence.

Also, take into account size and seat height. Ensure that the chair’s dimensions are proportionate for optimal comfort and support, especially if you are considering buying one for tall people.

Other features like cup holders, side pockets to store personal items, and a USB charge port may also be handy.

Trying Out Different Chairs

A recliner is not cheap. So take your time choosing one!

Visit furniture stores and encourage your senior loved one to try sitting in different chairs to assess their comfort and support. If possible, test the reclining and lifting mechanisms to ensure they’re easy to operate.

Evaluate the recliner’s ergonomic design and if it suits their needs. Also, try out extra features like the massage modes, and check whether they have cup holders or a USB port if that matters to the user.

Considering Budget and Longevity

Of course, like with any purchase, set a budget range for your recliner purchase. Keep in mind that a top-quality recliner may be more expensive upfront. However, they often provide better longevity and comfort.

Features like heating and massage modes, a USB charge port, and others will raise the price too. actiInquire about warranties and after-sales service. A good warranty can offer peace of mind, especially for a long-term investment like a recliner.

Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about choosing a recliner chair here.

What Is the Best Recliner Chair for the Elderly?

The best recliner chair for the elderly depends on their individual needs and preferences.

Popular options include lift chairs for improved mobility and recliners with heat and massage functions for pain relief.

Are Recliner Chairs Covered by Medicare?

In most cases, a standard recliner is not covered by Medicare or Medicaid Pay. However, certain medical conditions may warrant coverage for a lift chair if it’s prescribed by a physician.

Eligibility criteria and documentation requirements vary, so it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare provider for specific details.

How Do I Clean and Maintain a Recliner Chair?

A recliner is no regular chair. Cleaning and maintenance will vary depending on its upholstery material.

Generally, it’s recommended to vacuum or wipe down the chair regularly to remove dust and debris. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s care instructions for specific cleaning products and methods to avoid any unwarranted damage.

For long-term maintenance, inspect the chair for any loose parts or signs of wear and tear, and address any spotted issues promptly.

Can Recliner Chairs Help With Back Pain?

Yes, a recliner can help with back pain, especially those designed with proper lumbar support. Reclining allows users to distribute their weight more evenly and reduce pressure on the spine. 

Some recliners also offer heat and massage functions. These can provide additional relief by relaxing muscles and promoting blood flow.

Are There Any Safety Concerns With Using Recliner Chairs?

While a recliner is generally safe, there are some safety concerns to consider. These include the risk of falling when getting in and out of the chair, especially if it lacks stability or proper anti-tip mechanisms. To mitigate these risks to the elderly, choose recliners with safety features. It helps to ensure that the user is comfortable and confident when using the chair too.


Recliners for the elderly are not just pieces of furniture. I’d like to think they are companions who understand the needs of seniors for unwavering support and comfort.

I hope this ultimate guide and review of some of the top recliners in the market has been helpful!

By choosing the best recliners, you can ensure you or your loved ones can enjoy their golden years to the fullest. May they continue to recline and unwind in style and convenience!