Massage guns are handheld, battery-operated devices that emit vibrations or massages to help relax muscles and relieve pain. The Best Massage Guns 2022 usually have different attachment heads to help you reach certain areas of the body or customize your massage experience.
The popularity of massage guns is increasing because they provide an easy and convenient way to get a massage without going to the massage therapist and spending money. A massage brings fresh blood to the affected body part, which helps to get rid of waste in the muscles. It also cuts down on painful muscle contractions.
The reasons why to use Massage Guns?
The best massage guns of 2022 can help with all of the following:
- stress recovery
- tight muscles
- reducing the need for in-person massages
- increasing blood flow
- mobility and balance issues
- post-surgery healing. They are easy to hold and don’t require a lot.
A massage gun can be used in conjunction with a foam roller, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (or TENS) unit, or a massage therapist.
How to Choose a Massage Gun
When choosing a massage gun, you’ll want to consider what features are important to you. Here are some questions to ask yourself:
How powerful does the massage need to be? Do I need accessories like a carrying case or extra tips? What is my budget for this purchase?
- How often will you use it? If you see yourself using it a few times a week, you may feel OK buying a pricier model. However, if it’s occasional use, a less expensive model could be a better way to dip your toe into the waters of massage guns.
- Will you travel with it? If so, you probably want a smaller model, so it’s easier to carry, says Lauren Lobert Frison, a physical therapist and owner of APEX Physical Therapy in Brighton, Michigan.
- How loud is it? Some of them can be noisy, Lobert Frison says. However, the higher-priced models tend to be quieter, says Brandon Trachman, a physical therapist at PT Central in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
- How much does it weigh? You have to hold the massage gun to use it. If you have limited grip strength or fatigue easily, lighter will be better for you,
- What type of massage pressure do you like? Some are known for more aggressive pressure, which may not be a good match if you want lighter pressure, Frison says.
- What’s the battery life on a single charge? Again, you’ll find a range from 20 to 40 minutes to two or more hours, usually depending on cost.
- How many speed settings does it have? Ideally, it will have at least three settings, so you can vary the experience based on what you need.
- Are you looking for tech-based guidance on how to use your massage gun? Some of the higher-priced models have Bluetooth-connected apps that include videos on how to use the massage gun and provide custom-recommended warm-up and recovery routines.
The Best Massage Guns 2022
- Hypervolt 2 by Hyperice ($279 to $299 on Amazon). This versatile model is lightweight (1.8 pounds) and has three hours of battery life. It includes three speeds and five attachment heads, plus it’s a good size for travel. One potential drawback: Its larger handgrip may be more challenging for smaller hands to hold, DeLucchi says.
- Theragun Prime by Therabody ($299 on Amazon). The Prime model has five speeds, five attachments, and two hours of battery life. It weighs 2.2 pounds.
- Hypervolt Go by Hyperice ($179 to $199 on Amazon). One advantage with the Go model is its lightweight – only 1.5 pounds. The weight distribution makes it easy to use for patients with chronic pain, Jeffcoat says. In addition, it comes with two attachments. As a result, it’s not as powerful as pricier models but is just enough for most of her patients.
- Renpho R3 Massage Gun by Renpho ($99 on Amazon). This more affordable model has five attachments, five speeds and weighs 1.5 pounds. One Amazon reviewer wrote, “My legs were aching from an intense workout, so I used the gun on only my left leg to see what difference it made. Instantly the muscles felt less tight as if I hadn’t exercised.”
- Fusion FX Heated Percussion Massage Gun by LifePro ($229 on Amazon). A unique feature of the Fusion FX is that it provides heated massage for extra relief to sore muscles. It comes with five speeds, five attachments and three “bonus” modes to change up the massage approach. It weighs 2.16 pounds.
How to Get the Most Out of a Massage Gun
Once you find the right massage gun, keep these tips in mind so you can get the most out of using it:
- Try to relax the muscle you’re targeting in advance. If the muscle isn’t already somewhat relaxed, then it’s hard for the massage gun to provide further relief. One suggestion from DeLucchi: Hold the message gun in the opposite hand of whatever body part you’re working on. So, if you want to use it on your left shoulder, hold the massage gun in your right hand, so you’re not tensing the muscles in your left shoulder.
- Have a partner help out if available. There will always be some parts of your body that are hard to reach on your own. Ask someone to use the massage gun in those types of areas to help out.
- Expect some muscle soreness but not pain, Trachman says. Back off and use the gun elsewhere, or take a break if you experience pain. If the pain after using a massage gun lasts more than two to three days, see a doctor or physical therapist for help.
- Start slow and work your way up as tolerated if your massage gun has different speed settings.
- Talk to your doctor first if you use prescription blood thinners, have areas of impaired sensation or suspected blood clots. Typically, massage guns shouldn’t be used for people in these groups, Trachman says.
- Don’t use the gun on bony parts of the body or broken skin. This could cause skin damage.
- Please don’t overdo it. Less is more, DeLucchi says. He explains that two to three minutes per muscle group is more effective than a 30-minute session.
- Continue to use more than one way to relieve sore muscles. You’ll get better results by sticking with a range of options, including ice and heat packs, foam rollers and similar types of therapies.
- Combine massage gun use with stretching appropriate for your target muscle area. Trachman’s practice will often combine massage gun use with active stretching and other forms of hands-on therapy.
- Use it. That may seem obvious, but Lobert Frison has observed many people buying devices without ever using them. Find the time and place where you can relax while using it.