Best Zero Gravity Recliners for Patios Under $100

First of all, what is a zero gravity chair?

­Well, they do not make you weightless, that is certain. It is mostly a marketing tactic. They are called zero gravity because they resemble the way astronauts sit when lifting off. Because of the stresses involved when taking off vetically in a rocket, NASA discovered that the stress can be distributed safely across an astronaut’s body when they are in a reclining position.

These types of recliners are called zero-gravity chairs because of the position they assume when activated, or in the reclined position. In this position, a person’s back will be parallel to the floor and their hips will be bent with the knees supported above their chest. This position elevates the feet slightly higher than the heart, which improves circulation to the lower legs  thus reducing swelling. 

These types of chairs are designed to evenly dsitribute the weight of a person's body thereby reducing pressure on the spine and ribcage.

Zero gravity chairs have also been shown to aid people with chronic back pain and other physical afflictions.  

When discussing zero gravity chairs, it is important to make a distinction between two types. There are the more expensive recliners designed for use indoors and there are the portable reclining chairs designed for use outdoors on balconies.

Some of the indoor zero gravity recliners are very expensive costing upwards of $3000 or more, similar to one of the lift beds or chairs that a lot of elderly or disabled people have in their homes.

For the purpose of this discussion, we will focus on the zero gravity chairs designed for the outdoors around a pool or deck. These can be folded up just like a normal lounge chair and are portable. There are many different models to choose from available for $100 or less.

Here are four models to consider.

Caravan Canopy Zero Gravity Reclining Chair

The Caravan recliner comes in many colors. I purchased one of the blue ones last year for my mother and it has worked really well so far. Although it is durable and powder coated, she does not keep it outside in the rain. This chair is wide enough for a larger person and is built sturdy enough for heavier people.

The only negative thing about this chair that I would point is that the arm rests are on the thin side. If you have ever been on an airplane and not been able to rest your arms on one of the arm rests because your seat mate was hogging it, you know that this can be a bit uncomfortable.

However, I would not say it is a deal breaker. If you are someone that likes to read a lot, you probably will not even notice their size.

Here is a summary of some of the specifications:

  • Made with outdoor grade fabric
  • Folds down to 5-1/2-inch thick
  • Powder coated steel frame which will resist rust
  • Recline function that locks in any position
  • Adjustable headrest
Caravan Sports Infinity Zero Gravity Chair, Blue
Amazon Price: $79.99 $36.47 Buy Now
(price as of Feb 24, 2016)
Comes in a variety of colors

Strathwood Basics Anti-Gravity Recliner

The Strathwood advertises a “unique locking system” which it says allows the recliner to lock into virtually any reclining position. The foot rest has a rubber plate that looks and feels better than the one on the Caravan model.

Here are some of its best features:

  • Removable pillow for headrest or lumbar support.
  • Folds like a standard lounge chair
  • Powder-coated steel frame
  • Fabric of the chair is a polyester yarn with a resin coating
  • Weight limit 250 pounds
  • Carry weight 18 pounds
  • Separate canopy available for purchase
  • Offered in several colors
  • Not a good chair for someone over 6 feet tall

Strathwood Anti-Gravity Adjustable Recliner

Outsunny Zero Gravity Recliner Lounge Patio Pool Chair

If you are a heavy person, you might want to consider getting one of these models. They have the highest weight capacity (300 pounds) in this price range.

  • Removable pillow for a  headrest or lumbar support
  • Breathable mesh fabric
  • UV Resistant
  • Powder-coated steel frame
  • Angle lock allows for multiple reclining positions
  • Weight Limit: 300 pounds
  • Carry Weight: 20 pounds

Outdoor Zero Gravity Lounge Chair

Caravan Canopy Oversized Zero Gravity Recliner

The major difference between this Caravan chair and the one previously discussed is that it is built for bigger people. It has a maximum weight of 330 pounds, but it is also the most expensive in this group at around $90.

  • Extra wide, oversized reclining zero gravity chair
  • Max weight capacity 330 lbs.
  • Multiple reclining positions with a dual finger tip locking mechanism
  • Made with durable outdoor fabric
  • Adjustable headrest which can be removed and used for lumbar support
  • Powder coated steel frame

Caravan Canopy Oversized Zero Gravity Recliner

Caravan Sports Infinity Oversized Zero Gravity Chair, Brown
Amazon Price: $89.99 $56.78 Buy Now
(price as of Feb 24, 2016)


For under $100 you can have a durable, very comfortable reclining chair to lounge about on your deck or by your pool. These chairs are different from the tri-fold, metal and plastic ones you may be familar with from decades past. Those types of chairs were flimsy and uncomfortable and were prone to rusting.

Outdoor recliners are designed to take the pressure off the body and allow better circulation to your feet to prevent swelling. If you are someone with occasional back or spinal pain, you should try one of these out in one of the floor models at a home improvement store. They can also be found at other retailers, however, they may not be on display.