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Lift chairs are a great way for seniors to relax, retain independence, and avoid injuries and pain while standing/sitting.
However, not all lift chairs fit each person’s body - that’s why petite lift chairs are crucial for seniors who are smaller than average.
If you’re shorter than 5’6” and have a small frame, read our list of the best small lift chairs to find a petite lift chair that suits you!
What is a Petite Lift Chair?
Lift chairs are recliners that have electric motors in them which help the user sit down, stand up, and recline. These chairs are very helpful for people who have injuries, limited mobility, arthritis, or balance issues. Lift chairs can also have massage motors and heating pads built-in to increase your comfort and help you reduce any swelling and pain you might have.
Not all lift chairs are fit for every senior, however. Some are much too large, others are far too small. If you’re shorter than most people or have a generally “petite” stature, you may find many lift chairs to be uncomfortable. Lift chairs are typically made with lots of plush cushioning; if you’re smaller, a large lift chair with such cushioning can feel like it’s swallowing you! That’s why petite lift chairs are crucial to your comfort and ability to benefit from using a lift chair.
Petite lift chairs are similar to average and large-sized lift chairs in every way except for one: dimensions. These chairs are scaled down a bit to be suitable for people who are shorter than 5’6” and have a smaller frame. Outside of that, you can get all the same benefits from a petite chair as you would any other!
What Are the Benefits of a Petite Lift Chair?
Lift chairs are an essential medical device for many seniors; they’re so beneficial, in fact, that you can get one prescribed by a doctor and paid for by Medicare! The benefits of using a lift chair are wide-ranging and can be hard to describe; however, they are very easy to perceive when you start using one!
Pressure Relief and Swelling
This is one of the biggest benefits of using a petite lift chair. When you recline in your chair, you can take the pressure of gravity away from your hips and lower back and evenly distribute it across your body. If you have arthritis or are recovering from a recent injury/surgery, your body needs all the relief it can get; when your body isn’t subjected to as much pressure, it can heal faster.
Reclining your chair is also useful to reduce swelling in your joints, particularly the knees. Frequent knee pain affects 25% of all adults and causes swelling and stiffness. Reclining in a lift chair gives your knees a chance to breathe, reducing swelling, stiffness, and pain.
Standing and Sitting
When you have any medical concern or condition that limits your mobility, simple things such as standing and sitting become increasingly difficult. Standing/sitting is especially difficult on deep, plush furniture like couches and recliners. This is the purpose for which lift chairs were built: they do all the work of sitting and standing for you, saving your joints, muscles, and bones a lot of pain in the process. If getting off the couch has become more painful over the last few years, a petite lift chair might be exactly what you need!
Alternative/Companion to Hospital Bed
Hospital beds are fantastic and necessary devices for many seniors, but sitting in the same place you sleep day in and day out can grow old quickly. If you use a hospital bed but can still move about on your own, you may want to consider getting a lift chair. You can safely sit and recline in a lift chair during the day and shift back to your hospital bed at night. This gives you a bit more freedom, choice, and independence as a person who is using a hospital bed either in the short or long term!
10 Top Petite Lift Chairs for Seniors (2021)
1. Best Petite Lift Chair (Overall): Mcombo Small Sized Electric Recliner Chair
If you’re a senior who is less than 5’6”, this is the best lift chair for you. It’s designed exactly for people your size, it has heat and massage functions, and it’ll fit nearly any budget. The headrest is very plush, functioning very well as a pillow when you want to take a nap. It will recline nearly to a flat position, giving you a full range of options for relaxing and reclining.
While this chair isn’t as luxurious as models that cost $1,500+, it goes toe-to-toe with those models in terms of performance. It’s a simple chair that fits most decor styles and does everything that you need it to do. For less than $500, you get a chair that will help you relieve pain, relax comfortably, and lessen your chance of injury while sitting and standing!
2. Best Vinyl Petite Lift Chair: Ebern Designs Annarae Lift Chair
This chair is covered in high-quality faux leather that is comfortable, breathable, and easy to clean. The chair itself is a bit taller than other petite models, giving you more headroom to stretch out. It has 4 different massage zones that you can use separately or at once; the massage also has three different intensity settings.
The best part about this petite lift chair is the amount of cushion it provides. It’s a small chair, so it won’t swallow you, but it is overstuffed with soft foam that makes sitting on this chair feel better than most couches and beds. This chair, though it is a bit on the expensive side, is ideal for any senior who needs a place to sit, relax, and take a load off!
3. Best Petite Wide Lift Chair: Pride Mobility Heritage 358PW Lift Chair
Pride Mobility is more popular for their mobility scooters and powered wheelchairs, but they also have a line of high-quality lift chairs. The 358PW has a 24-inch high backrest and a 24-inch wide seat. This makes it ideal for seniors who aren’t tall but don’t feel comfortable on a narrow lift chair.
Chairs like these can be hard to find because most companies make wide chairs or petite chairs, not both. This chair has all the features needed for comfort and benefit: heat and massage, an easy-to-use remote, and all the cushion you’ll ever need. If you’re a person who is short and wide, this is the ideal lift chair for you!
4. Quietest Small Lift Chair: Irene House Dual Okin Motor Power Lift Chair
Features & Benefits:
One of the best things about this chair is something you’ll never see: the motors. They’re OKIN motors, meaning they’ve been designed to very precise German specifications and standards.
Why does that matter? Simply put, it means that this chair will be the quietest, smoothest, and most durable chair you may have ever had! Any smaller senior looking for a chair that won’t make tons of noise or jostle them around has found a winner with the Irene House power lift chair.
Aside from the supreme durability and smoothness of the motors, this chair has a lot to offer by way of comfort and style. It’s got smooth leather upholstery that is sure to blend in with your decor, and the foam inside is incredibly soft and supportive. The chair also comes with a lumbar pillow, a nice added touch for anyone who has chronic lower back pain or posture issues.
Who It's Best For?
If comfort while sleeping is your chief concern, this is the lift chair for you. It lacks any of the luxurious heat/massage features that come with most chairs, but it makes up for it with comfort. If you’ve tried other lift chairs and found they left you sore and stiff in the morning, give the Irene House lift chair a shot!
5. Best Lay-Flat Small Lift Chair: Mecor Power Lift Chair Recliner
Features & Benefits:
It can be hard to find a lift chair that actually lays all the way flat. Most only go to 140 or 150 degrees, and that’s just as comfortable a sleeping position for many people. If you prefer to be completely flat when you sleep, however, this chair should be high on your list.
Aside from that, the Mecor Power Lift Chair has another feature that’s great for sleeping: true memory foam in the seat and back. Most chairs have soft foam and are comfortable for sleeping, but having legitimate memory foam that gently cradles you as you sleep is a huge bonus to any sleeper chair.
The Mecor Power Lift Chair has all the other features that a modern lift chair should have: massaging, USB chargers, side pockets, and a heating element. It’s an all-around great choice for any senior- as long as they’re shorter than 5’11”!
Who It's Best For?
This is an excellent choice for any senior who wants the ability to lay completely flat (180 degrees) in their chairs. Many sleeper chairs lay almost flat, but not all the way- and very few chairs at this price extend to 180 degrees. If you’re less than 5’7”, there is a strong chance you’ll be more than satisfied by the Mecor Power Lift Recliner.
6. Most Affordable Small Lift Chair: BINGTOO Power Lift Recliner
Features & Benefits:
It gets a lot of complaints for being too short- but that’s precisely why it landed on our list. It’s an ideal choice for people who are shorter than 5’10” (in fact, 5’6” is the perfect height for this chair), and it costs less than nearly any other chair on the market.
It’s certainly one of the cheapest that’s actually worth buying; BINGTOO could charge $300-400 more for this chair and it would still be worth the money!
The BINGTOO chair has four different massage areas, and you can select between 5 different intensity levels. There is also a lower back heating function- all controlled by a single, easy-to-use remote. The remote, too, is hard to lose- it’s connected to a cable and fits perfectly in the chair’s side pocket when it isn’t in use.
This chair provides so much bang for the buck that it was difficult not to make it our best overall. However, its lack of “lay-flat” reclining and upholstery that stains too easily mean that you do, in some senses, get what you pay for. If you don’t want to sleep in the chair and you don’t mind being careful with food/drink, though, it’s a wonderful choice.
Who It's Best For?
This is the best chair for anyone working with a tight budget. It delivers the same features and comforts as chairs that cost twice as much, even if it does look a bit cheaper and the upholstery isn’t as nice. If you’ve got a small budget or you don’t care as much about upholstery style, this is the perfect chair for you- you get everything you need, for less!
7. Best Small Lift Chair with Gentle Massage: Yitahome Power Lift Recliner Chair
Features & Benefits:
Swedish deep-tissue massage is widely popular, but not everyone enjoys the intensity the same. Many people prefer a softer massage, and that’s exactly what the Yitahome Power Lift Recliner Chair provides. The vibrating massage nodes don’t press too deep into your muscle, providing something more akin to a Shiatsu massage with gentle kneading.
This lift chair also provides an incredible amount of back support. Anyone who plans to spend the majority of their day in a lift chair and is worried about back issues should feel confident selecting this chair.
The remote doesn’t have the most clearly marked buttons, but it is easy to get the hang of after a few minutes of toying around with it. The chair also comes with a USB charger, 2 side pockets, and 2 cupholders so that all of your necessities can be kept close by. All things considered, it’s a wonderful chair for the right person.
Who It's Best For?
The chair is ideal for smaller users, and has a compact design that makes it great for small spaces, too. If you’re worried about fitting a large leather recliner in your living room, bedroom, or small apartment, this chair’s tight 33.8”X28.7” base is perfect for you.
Small seniors, people living in small spaces, and those who like gentler massaging will all be extremely happy with the Yitahome Power Lift Recliner Chair!
8. Softest Small Lift Chair: Esright Small Power Lift Recliner Chair
Features & Benefits:
Ideal for anyone 5’5” or shorter, this power lift chair is stuffed to the brim with soft foam. It’ll not only help you stand up and sit down safely, it might just give you the best afternoon nap you’ve taken in years!
The chair takes about 30 seconds to go from fully reclined to fully lifted into a standing position. This is slow enough to be safe for most people; if you have a severe mobility issue, you may want to do this in stages or find a chair that moves a bit slower.
The padding on the back, headrest, and even under the seat are a wonderful combination of support and softness. It’s not too firm, so you won’t get sore, but it’s not so soft that you sink in and develop posture issues, either!
Who It's Best For?
This chair can technically fit a user who is 5’9”, but seniors 5’5” and shorter will feel the most comfortable. It’s perfect for taking a nap or even sleeping if you like the Zero-Gravity position because the headrest feels exactly like a soft down pillow. If you want softness without sacrificing support, this is the chair for you!
Best Petite Lift Chair (Runners-Up)
If you’ve used a La-Z-Boy in the past, you know the exact level of premium comfort and durability that this petite lift chair has. It comes with luxurious and beneficial heat and massage, and you can choose between hundreds of different upholstery options. If you’re looking for a lift chair that will fit your home and body, this is the one for you!
The only reason that this chair did not take the #1 spot on our list is because of the price. It doesn’t perform noticeably better than any of the other chairs, but it does cost about twice as much. Still, with La-Z-Boy, you do get your money’s worth with the limited lifetime warranty and luxurious craftsmanship.
With four different massage zones and two heat zones, this chair has the potential to give you a full-body relaxation experience you’ll love. It’s also the smallest chair on our list- the seat is only 20 inches wide and 19 inches deep, perfect for people with very small frames. While you will be paying more for this chair than any other on our list, it is difficult to find a model that works as well for very small seniors!
Buying Guide: How to Choose a Petite Lift Chair
What are the Best Brands of Petite Lift Chair?
Depending on where you live, you may be able to rent an electric patient lift from one of these locations:
What is the Price Range of a Petite Lift Chair?
Petite lift chairs, compared to more expensive massage chairs and even most hospital beds, are very affordable. The least expensive petite lift chairs will set you back between $350 and $500. Medium-priced chairs cost between $500 and $1,000; these chairs perform a bit better and use premium materials. Finally, any chair that costs more than $1,000 would be considered luxury; they’re made with fine materials and often have the best warranties.
Are Petite Lift Chair Covered by Medicare?
Yes! 80% of the cost of your petite lift chair will be paid for by Medicare if you obtain a doctor’s prescription. Medicare considers lift chairs and other devices to be Durable Medical Equipment (DME), a category of products covered under Medicare Part B.
There are two main obstacles you will have to overcome in order to have your lift chair covered. First, you need a prescription from a doctor who participates in Medicare. Second, you must purchase your lift chair from a supplier that also participates in Medicare. If you can do those two things, you’re all set! Often, the process is easy even if it is a bit slow.
What to Look for in a Petite Lift Chair
You should think about these factors when picking an electric patient lift:
Tips for Getting the Best Deal on a Petite Lift Chair
Final Thoughts: Petite Lift Chairs for Seniors
There we have it! The best petite lift chairs are the ones that fit your body, your needs, and your budget. You can find measurable relief from pain, stiffness, and general discomfort by getting a lift chair. You can even get much better sleep by using the massage and heat functions! Which lift chair on our list are you most interested in? Do you have any questions about the models featured? Drop your comments below!