The Saunders Cervical traction device does not come cheap.

You probably won’t find it for less than $300 – anywhere.

But that matters less if it can actually relieve and prevent neck pain.

In this full review for the Saunders Cervical Traction unit, you’ll all the details, benefits, pros and cons, and our bottom line.

saunders cervical traction review

This post contains affiliate links.

2024 update

Right now, the Saunders machine’s best price is found on HPFYor consider the best alternative – Comfortrac Cervical Traction device.

But first:

Saunders Cervical Traction Pros & Cons

The neck decompression delivered by the Saunders can help anyone who suffers from neck and shoulder pain.

It can be helpful for:

  • Herniated or bulging disc in the cervical spine
  • Pinched nerves in the neck and shoulders
  • Neck muscle tension and headaches associated with it
  • Neck Arthritis
  • Neck strains
  • Neck muscle spasms

If you’re in a hurry, here are our main findings:

Saunders Pros

  • Powerful – Up to 50lbs traction force
  • Easy to use and comes fully assembled
  • Can be operated without help from other people
  • Safe and comfortable
  • Fits all neck sizes
  • Portable and comes with a carrying case


  • It May take some time getting used to and finding optimal settings
  • Relatively high price

How Does the Saunders System Relieve Neck Pain?

This high-quality neck traction home device is designed for cervical decompression (It does not apply pressure to the back curve of the neck).

The Saunders provides up to 50 pounds of traction on the cervical area of the spine, stretching it safely.

how to use the saunders

$348 at Walmart, same price on HPFY

When you stretch your neck this powerfully, you create a distance between your cervical discs, which relieves the pressure on your nerves, discs, and muscles.

The result?

Taking the pressure off of the discs that reside between the vertebrae (spinal bones) results in almost immediate neck pain relief – for some people.

It can also open up the spaces where nerves exit your spinal canal and relieve the pressure on a compressed nerve.

It allows for healing nutrients to enter your injured neck and speed up healing.

Traction can also help stretch the muscles and joint structures around the neck.

Bottom line

Proper cervical traction can be the fastest (natural!) way to stop neck pain completely and in the long term.

How to Use the Saunders Cervical Traction Device 

It’s pretty obvious that if you want to decompress your cervical spine at home, it has to be easy.

It has to be comfortable.

It should require no help from anyone else.

It should be safe.

saunders cervical traction features

Through our research we’ve found that the Saunders neck traction system is extremely easy to use:

  • You simply lie down on a flat surface with your head resting on the two neck holders.
  • Then you fasten your forehead with the strap and slowly pump up the pressure with a pump held in your hand until you reach comfortable tension.
  • As you do this the device pulls your head away from your body stretching out deep muscles in your neck and relieving pressure off your vertebrae.

That’s all.

It’s definitely easier to use than any over-the-door cervical traction unit, and more comfortable than the inflatable traction devices that can make you feel strangled.

Here’s a quick demonstration for using the Saunders home device, along with clear instructions.

See how easy it is?

How Much Pressure Should I Use with The Saunders Cervical Traction?

saunders pressure gauge

Saunders pressure gauge

According to, While every person needs individualized consideration, there are some very safe and effective general guidelines for using the Saunders device.

25-40 lbs of force for the mid and lower cervical spine is often clinically effective in conditions where a separation of the intervertebral space is needed.

For example,  radiculopathy caused by herniated cervical disc, interforaminal nerve root encroachment, degenerative disc or joint disease, or facet joint impingement.

In other conditions where the muscles are primarily affected, less force may be effective. Examples include suboccipital or upper trapezius muscle tension or shortening.

How Long Should You Use a Cervical Traction Device?

Through our research (see references at the end of the post, 10-20 minutes of treatment is best, except for herniated discs, which require less time – 5-10 minutes only.

Lengthier treatment time may reverse the beneficial effects.

Treatment frequency depends on your response. Traction may be done daily, twice daily, or two to three times a week.

It’s best to get a prescription from your doctor.

Is Saunders Comfortable?

The Saunders traction unit is much more comfortable than the over-the-door units.

You can forget about jaw or teeth pain, and as long as you keep the pull pressure in limits (start with 12 lbs only and work up gradually) – you will only feel a comforting relief.

If you’ve ever tried relaxing while doing neck traction, you’ve noticed how difficult it can be. It feels like the neck muscles resist the traction.

Research has shown that most of this muscle resistance is reduced with supine or reclined traction.

The Saunders offers reclined traction, to maximize relaxation and increase the decompression effectivity. It has a customizable inclination from 15 to 25 degrees at the push of a button.

In addition: it has a memory pillow, which conforms to your head.

Does it Fit Every Neck Size?

The Saunders neck wedges are adjustable in width and have a self-adjusting pivot that customizes to fit.

The rotation of the neck wedges and the width adjusting feature – ensure that it will fit every neck size.

Note: Some people use a sock under the head strap so it doesn’t dig into the forehead.

Can You Assemble and Operate the Saunders without Help?

Great news:

The Saunders comes fully assembled.

And anyone can use it without any kind of help and on their own.

Does Cervical Traction Cause Pain? Is it Safe?

First of all:

As long as you start neck traction slowly and gradually, the only physical result is fast and comforting relief.


Some people, desperate for neck pain relief, pull the Saunders out of the box and immediately pump it to the maximum 50 lbs traction.

While doing this can eliminate the pain for a few hours (some report the pain gone for good!), the pain may come back after a while and hurt even more for a few days.

Make sure to start gradually and stop when you feel a comfortable stretch.

The Saunders is high-quality medical equipment, heavy-duty, and made with fine materials.

It has a quick-release button that you can use if you feel a need to stop traction immediately and safely.


We highly recommend that you consult with your physician or physical therapist about specific instructions for neck traction before using the Saunders.

Can the Saunders Prevent Neck Surgery?

Through our research, we’ve discovered many stories about people who have already scheduled neck surgeries and canceled them after using Saunders for a few weeks.

Is the Saunders Portable?

Yes, Saunders is portable, lightweight, and can be easily taken and operated anywhere.

The Saunders size and weight: 20.5 by 8 by 12.5, 8 pounds.

Saunders Cervical Traction Price and Where to Buy

saunders cervical traction walmart

We recommend buying the Saunders Cervical Traction System from HPFY.


Because sometimes there’s something wrong with new units. The pump may not work, air may be leaking, or some part missing.

Health Products for You has a reliable return policy and a money-back guarantee, so you can replace the Saunders if by a rare chance it has defected.

Is it Covered by Insurance?

To our knowledge, the Saunders unit is covered by insurance. When filing for reimbursement, use the following:

“EO849 – Traction equipment, cervical, free-standing stand/frame, pneumatic, applying traction force to other than mandible”.


Through our research, the Saunders neck traction home unit is one of the best neck traction home devices in the market – in 2022.

We give the Saunders Neck Traction device our highest rating – 5 stars.

Here’s why:

  • It’s a high-quality device, sturdy, and won’t break down easily
  • Fits all neck sizes
  • Cost-effective and saves a lot of money on clinic treatments
  • Customer service is very good
  • Comes fully assembled, can be operated safely alone, whenever you need it.
  • Portable and can be taken when traveling (carrying case is included)
  • Easy to use and comfortable
  • We highly recommend this before rushing into surgery. Start slow and work into your settings. Give it a real chance and you may find yourself canceling surgery in a couple of weeks.

Is there anything we forgot to cover in this review for the Saunders Cervical Traction system? Do you have any other questions? We’ll be happy to answer in the comments below.

What’s your experience with home neck traction or cervical traction equipment?

To your health and happiness,

The Back-Pain-Relief-Products team

Meital James

Meital James, Founder and CEO of 4 healthy living blogs, has a background in Naturopathic medicine, research, journalism, and nutrition. Her blogs are the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and experience and all the posts are verified by scientific findings.

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