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on January 1, 2011
I don't usually do reviews, but in this case I'll make an exception. For the record, I have no association or relationship of any kind with any of the companies, including Amazon or Nubax, I'm just a consumer who bought this product, and I'm willfully sharing my experience.

What led me to buy this product is pain and fear. I'm in my late 40's, and have suffered with chronic back pain for close to 10 years. Every 8-16 months I would go through a period of debilitating back pain, which would last 3-6 weeks. My family doctors always wrote it off as muscular, based on X-rays, and they always simply prescribed pain killers and muscle relaxers.

About 4 months ago I woke up one morning virtually unable to move. My lower back was so painful I couldn't even walk. My family doctor phoned in the prescription for the usual pain medication and muscle relaxers. After a week or so, the pain subsided slightly, enough to let me walk, but the problem wasn't going away this time. Worse, it was starting to affect my entire right side, including my shoulder and my right hip and leg. I was scared. That led to an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon. At first his opinion was lumbardosis, but I pressed for facts not guesswork, and he sent me for an MRI. The results were very surprising, to me and my orthopedic surgeon; three herniated discs in my lower back (L6/L5, L5/L4, L4/L3), very clearly visible in the MRI. This explains my chronic back aches.

So, the doc prescribed physio-therapy, daily exercise, pain killers and muscle relaxers. His advise was do the exercises, and when I feel pain coming on take the meds. He further told me that there is no getting better. My only hope, provided I do the exercises religously, is that it won't get much worse. In his expert opinion, there is no way to reverse the damage of herniated discs. More concerning, he told me it was likely that it will get worse, and that I will eventually need epidural injections in the spine. GREAT!

That's where my journey to find some long-term relief began. I surfed the web and talked to people, and eventually came to believe that traction was the best option. That led to two choices, inversion table or home-based traction devices like the Nubax. I was a little hesitant about inversion, I'm not very keen on hanging upside down. So I decided to start with the Nubax instead.

Now, bear in mind that I had been doing daily back exercises for 2 years, and after my last episode of debilitating back pain I was in worse shape than ever before. The worst pain was getting up from a sitting position, and standing or walking. The day the Nubax arrived I was unable to stand or walk for more than 10-15 minutes without having to sit down and stretch my back to relieve the pain.

I immediately started using the Nubax, two to three times daily, 3-minutes at a time. At first, I could feel some limited relief, but nothing earth shattering. I wasn't sure I would keep the device. After about 2 weeks of continued use I experienced my first back crack (more like a little crackle), and suddenly my back felt a little better. This was very encouraging. After continued use I had another crack every five to seven days, each time I felt like I had taken a step forward in pain relief. Now, after using the device for approximately one month, I truly feel like I've made significant progress. I'm not healed, by any stretch of the imagination, but for the first time in years I now feel like there is some hope that I won't be crippled in my old age. I can actually stand and walk for more than half an hour now, with very little pain. I can push it to an hour if I do a little stretching to keep my back loose. In fact, during the Christmas holiday I stood for several hours cooking the holiday dinner. This may not seem like much to most people, but it was a heaven-sent gift to me. The progress I've made so far was certainly worth the price of the device.

I have discovered some things that can make using the Nubax a little better, easier. Maybe these will help you.

1- Wear loose clothing, or wear as little as possible on your torso. I prefer shirtless. The clothing can actually restrict your movement and limit the stretch you get. Belts also get in the way and will pinch your skin as you use the device, so take them off before you start.

2- Use a timer, and try to stay in the device for two to three full minutes each time. I use the countdown timer function on my blackberry, but an egg time or any timer with a bell or chime will do.

3- If you don't have a carpeted area where you can use the Nubax, use a folded towel or blanket under your knees so it is more comfortable. Make sure it is not too thick and that it doesn't slip, otherwise you'll find yourself slipping forward as you use it.

4- At first I found the device awkward to use, and it was very uncomfortable, even painful, on my shoulders. I then developed a technique where I position the back of my upper arms against the pads, with my wrists on the handle bars. This takes the pressure off the shoulders, and greatly reduced (not eliminated) the pain on my shoulders.

5- I use the Nubax two or three times daily, every morning after I do my back exercises, and then again as the very last thing I do before I go to bed at night (this is recommended by the manufacturer). The stretch before bed is vital because apparently it lets your back stay loose throughout the night without gravity compressing your spine. When time permits, I use the Nubax when I get home from work or at midday if I'm home.

6- Concentrate on loosening your back while you use the Nubax, and try to concentrate your stretch on your lower back. It took me while to get it right, and music or an iPod may help. You'll notice yourself slowly sinking lower and lower throughout the exercise as you loosen up.

7- Drink lots of water, apparently it helps to hydrate your discs in your spine, and improves disc healing (I was told this by a chiropractor and by my orthopedic surgeon).

Like most people have noted, the device itself is pretty simple, and the total sum of the materials is probably not more than about $50. It's not flimsy or anything, but certainly could have been made with heavier and better materials. Furthermore, the design could likely be improved and the whole device could be made to be more ergonomic and comfortable. That is the reason I gave it 4 stars instead of 4. But, with that said, I am glad I bought it, and I intend to continue using it for a long time, maybe for the rest of my life.

A word of caution to anyone reading this. Don't take this, or any other testimonial, as fact that this device will cure your ailment. My experience is my own, whether real or imagined, and there is no assurance that you will have the same experience as I have. No one can guarantee that you will feel better from using this device. My only suggestion is that you evaluate this info, along with other research, and decide for yourself if you think this device can help you. Honestly, I haven't even thrown out the box yet, in case I change my mind. But that is very unlikely now.

I hope you find this review useful, and more importantly I hope you find relief for your back. There are few things I know of that are worse than a back pain.

Good luck.
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on January 14, 2010
I have had back pain in the past, and even surgery for 2 heriatied disks in my lower back about 8 years ago (with a VERY positive outcome), and I'm only 48. Sciatica pain, but not from an injury. Then this holiday, I started in with the horrible sciatica pain and tingling in my leg and got scared. I can't do surgery again (but it was the only thing that helped).

So I started looking for something to help. I researched opinions on Amazon for the Back2life product and found a link to[....] to their review, and what they recommended, and that's where I found out about the Nubax product. I viewed some videos on YouTube and purchased it right away.

The packing of the product in the box is FANTANSTIC, and believe me, this is important. I purchases many items via mail order, and lots of things come poorly packed and damaged. You don't want to spend $300 on a product to have it show up damaged.

The assembly of the product is extremely simple, and it actually took more time to take the parts out of the box and remove the protective packing than it took to put it together.

The quality of the product is exceptional, considering the price and that it's made in China. It really is strong and well made.

It comes with an instruction book and a cd. It is very easy to use, and I feel relief right away. I can really feel the stretch in my spine from hip area to the mid shoulder area. I've never experienced anything like this.
I tried inversion tables, but I get motion sick when I hang upside down, so it doesn't work for me. And I can't afford the cost of going through multiple back traction therapies.

Thank you for bringing this product to the US!

UPDATE: 2013

I'm still using the NUBAX, and the "machine" is still in pristine working order. It is the ONE the ONLY thing that rids me my back pain. If I get into a seriously bad back pain issue, I use this multiple times per day (only a couple of minutes at a time) and in about 3 to 7 days, the back pain is gone. This home traction machine works SOOO well, I can't image life without it. It is the best, and I can't say enough. Remember, it won't take the pain away the first time you use it, but give it at least a week or two, and you feel results (and save a bucket of money compared to going for traction treatments)
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on October 27, 2010
I wrote a rather negative review based on my experience of assmbling the machine. I was wrong. I missed a key part of the assembly and after backtracking everything allfell into place.

I must say that the adjustment knobs and the threads are not well match and I broke one knob off tightening it. Fortunately I can use a wrench to adjust the exposed head of the bolt.

That aside I have had sciatic and lower back issues for some time. Three years to be exact. I have tried almost everything to get relief. For a two week period I was literally on my hands and knees crawling about to alleviate the pain. Anyone who has had sciatic and back pain will attest to its severity. Imagine a white hot ice pick driven between your vertebra and then jerked up and down. Thats is what it felt like. I could only sleep in the fetal position.

So I began my search for some relief. Stretches, Dr,'s,pills, walking. I did it all and felt that I just needed to pop my back. I am a big guy and not easily manipulated.

Today after finally getting it together, Nubax, I followed directions and got into position. I leaned forward the first time and was not correctly aligned. I got back into a closer position to the apparatus, leaned forward and at the same time made a conscious effort to relax my back. Slowly released the old back as it is real tender the last few days.

Well as I relaxed more and more I began to hear things that were rather disturbing to include pops and I also felt a deep grinding pop. It was not a sound but a deep rumble sort of thing in my lower back and instantly I had complete relief. That was the "pop my back" needed I have felt all these years, is my guess.

Well it is new and I know I may be over reacting to the first time out but I can see this is going to be a good thing for me in any event. I will report back after a time to let you know what happens. But I think this thing is worth a shot for anybody with similar issues. Heck it is less than the Dr. visit I made.
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on May 23, 2010
Had a pain down the right leg so bad I hated to walk down the lane to get the morning paper. Heard about this from my son who lives in Australia and thought, wow --$279 , but if it works I'll be glad to pay it. It came well packaged and well made. Easy to put together and easy to understand. Two minutes three or four times a day and the sharp leg pain is less and less fequent every day Went all day today without it. I like the gentle stretching in the lower part of my back and can sense things opening up down there. Easy does it. And it does it well.
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on May 30, 2011
I'm a 54 yo nurse and about 7 years ago, I herniated my disc at L4-L5. Three years later, after medications, therapy, and injections failed, back surgery allowed me to return to work. Though never totally pain free, I was able to walk, work, and sit, activities that allow me to remain independent. Well, I re-injured my back about two weeks ago, just before a scheduled vacation. I spent a lot of the vacation lying on the floor, but I also started searching the internet for anything I had missed in previous searches. This is when I found the NuBax.

Bought the Nubax last week. Spent the extra few dollars to get it the next day via Amazon. It arrived promptly, well packaged. The DVD would not play, but I was able to figure out how to put it together using the written instructions which were written for an earlier model.

OMG!!!! I am in love. It took a bit to figure out where the strap should be for me, but once I did that I thought I was in heaven. I did not want to get out of the Nubax. It is the first time I have been pain free in 7 years. And, the ease of motion remained for a while after getting out of the Nubax. I feel it helped to open the spine and it helped to relax the muscles.

I do not know that anything will give me the freedom of movement that I had before my back injury, but so far the Nubax is the best thing I have found. It is easy and quick enough that I will use it multiple times a day, which all of the traction devices recommend for optimal results. Unlike the inversion table, I don't have to put on special shoes and don't have to stop food or liquids before using it. I can just DO IT. Back spasm....Just get into the device, lean over and relax. I have started using it before sleep, and was surprised at being able to turn over with minimal sensation as opposed to the usual shooting pain. I just wish I could have one upstairs, one downstairs, and one at work. There is nothing that works for everyone, but this device is working for me. I find that I am moving with less pain all day long.

Do take the time to figure out where the belt/strap should be for YOU.
Do adjust the shoulder pads to your torso.
Do start with a small stretch and gently work up to more stretch. Know that the closer to the device your knees are, the less the stretch.
Don't force a stretch. Just lean forward and relax. As I relaxed my body would naturally move into a bit more stretch.
I found putting a pillow case under my knees helped since the rug irritated the skin there.

I have an inversion table. Have had it for years. Works great, BUT requires total inversion to do well on my lower back and I can't use it if I've been eating or drinking. Makes me too nauseous. So, this is limited for my uses and I don't do it frequently. Not to mention changing to sturdy tie shoes before inverting is a bother.

Recently bought a bent-leg inversion device. Works for the entire back and is especially good for the lower back since the bent leg position relaxes the lumbar areas. BUT....They don't tell you that you will have to contract those lower back muscles to get out of the machine. So you relax everything and then throw it into spasms to get out. Again, you don't want to do this if you've been eating or drinking since you balance on your abdomen.
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on July 9, 2011
I'm 38 - fit (workout 3-4 times a week) - and have suffered from chronic lower back pain now for a number of years as a result of several injuries. For me, the only thing that had started to help recently was physical therapy. 3 times a week.

With my work schedule it was literally impossible to maintain a regular regiment of PT. I travel 2-3 times a week (which continually worsened my back situation). Yep, I can get a work out in here and there at hotels, but really treating my back right just hasn't been an option and my back had worsened significantly lately.

I pulled the trigger and ordered this thing last weekend while I was dealing with severe pain. Mind you, I also own an inversion table that helps...but not much.

I got home from New York last night in serious pain from traveling and a long week and put this thing together. I tried it out and then got into it really good right before I went to bed.

I woke up this morning with a huge smile on my face. I really can't believe the difference just one session made on it.

I am CONFIDENT that with this device and a light regiment of lower back muscle related exercises I'll be able to get back to a normal life. Extremely pleased.
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on May 2, 2014
Assembly was easy. Instructions were good. Definitely take the time to read the instructions and watch the videos on youtube or the included DVD. The instructions say you will feel a little discomfort in your shoulders/upper body as you get used to the device. DO NOT GIVE UP at this point. Work thru this initial pain - it will go away. I've been struggling for years with very painful neuropathy in my legs. I finally found a chiropractor with a treatment plan and a spine decompression machine that was helping and then my company changed their medical insurance provider and my chiropractor was not on their plan.

Thankfully this $300 device delivers the same treatment as a 100k+ spine decompression machine. Kudo's and thanks to whoever dreamed up this clever and effective design. As you begin to get acclimated to the machine you will intuitively learn how subtle shifts in you body position can increase/decrease tension in your back and isolate different sections of your spine for treatment.

I'm holding my review at 4 stars for because I'm only a few weeks in. I'll update again as my treatment continues. For now I can definitely say if you are doing spine decompression and it's helping you - this device will help you too.
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on September 10, 2011
I have herniated disks in both my lumbar and my thoracic regions. I stood in a line one day for more than and hour and closer to two and as a result, my lower back was in agony for six months straight. I found by accident that some ad hoc traction was bringing me some temporary relief and I decided to research and get some kind of traction device. I had looked at traction tables but some very positive reviews of the NuBax Trio led me to give this device a try. I'm glad that I did. Less that one week's use and my lower back pain was gone completely.

I have been using this device for several years now occasionally when my back starts to hurt. My thoracic pain is much different but this device does provide some relief. When I use it daily, it does help provide thoracic pain relief.

I'm 6'4" and I do not have any problems using this with my height. I would recommend that you learn how to properly extract yourself as this can actually pull your lower back muscles if done wrong. The correct way to extract yourself is to use your hand on the floor and push your upper body up.
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on March 18, 2010
I ordered this product after watching the promising UTube video and the reviews. I was hopeful that it would help with the L5 protruding disc and back pain. I was hopeful,however,I could not get past how painful it was on my shoulders and neck. When I tried to stop the stretch I couldn't, it kept inching toward the floor, therefore I could never really "relax" my back muscles. This is not good when you have to start out "a little at a time". When I get up from it I feel like I need to have a chiropractor adjustment on my neck and shoulders, it was quite painful. I am only 5'4 and maybe that had a lot to do with it. I followed the instructions, tried to adjust the belt that goes across the leg (which slid constantly) but I still could not make it fit right for me. On top of it the mesh body sling ripped on the 3rd try! I am sure that it works for just the right size and height, but unfortunately not for me. I returned it and ordered a traditional inversion table instead.
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on May 29, 2010
I have been suffering form back pain for over 10 years and i'm only 33, i had tried everything but surgery, finally this machine easy up the pain in my lower back.
The first time i tried this i had a really bad neck and shoulder pain for about 2 days, but after that no neck shoulder or lower back pain, i would say 75% of the pain is gone, the key is that my sister gives me a massage with warm oil while stretching, i tell her the trigger points and she focus the strenght in those areas, gues what? feels AWESOME.
The only bad thing is that it needs some upgrades for the length of the handle, if your forearms are long it gets a little unconfortable, but NO low back pain is PRICELESS.
Thanks for reading my post. and keep the reviews!
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