In case you’re wondering why some folks can perform highly intense exercises almost on a daily basis without the obvious signs of pain, discomfort, or even swelling, that’s because they’ve got a secret up their sleeves. Well, it’s not really a secret, but it’s something that some people may not be familiar with.
No, it’s not going to a massage clinic. Why bother when you can get essentially the same, and sometimes better health and fitness benefits right in your home?
What I’m talking about are massage guns or percussion massagers. And in this series of reviews, I’ll be giving you a glimpse of what to expect from massage guns so you’ll have an idea of how they can help you with your needs.
- 1 Muscle Massager Percussion Gun
- 2 RENPHO Massage Gun
- 3 MECO 20 Massage Gun
- 4 Theragun G3PRO Percussion Massager
- 5 HyperIce Hypervolt Percussion Massager
- 6 Features to Look for When Buying a Massage Gun / Percussion Massager
|Image||Product Name||Oscillations||Battery Life||Massage Head||My Rating||Where to Buy|
|3200 Per Minute||4-9 Hours||4||4.8/5|
|3200 Per Minute||8 Hours||4||4.7/5|
|3200 Per Minute||4-5 Hours||6||4.6/5|
|2400 Per Minute||1.25 Hours||6||4.5/5|
|3200 Per Minute||3 Hours||4||4.4/5|
Features to Look for When Buying a Massage Gun / Percussion Massager
When buying a percussion massager, I recommend looking for the following features. While these are not absolute, these can help you narrow down your choices, making it a lot easier to choose the correct one for you.
This is perhaps one of the most critical things that you have to look for in a percussion massager. The whole point about these types of massage devices is that they produce steady vibrations in an up and down motion.
Imagine having a hammer that is connected to a contraption. Now, this contraption is connected to a motor that activates the hammer. The force of impact or pressure is directly proportional to the distance the hammer travels from its starting point all the way to the surface that is being hammered.
Let us put it this way. Try hammering a nail but only lift the hammer some 10 centimetres from the head of the nail. Now hammer away. Do you think you’re delivering enough power to drive the nail through the wood?
Try lifting the hammer as far as your arms can go. Try hitting the nail this time. If you hit it on the spot, you might even drive the nail through the wood in a single blow. You can, thus, say that lifting the hammer as far as possible can deliver more power or more force.
When we apply this to the percussion massager, the longer the distance of travel of each percussion or ‘hammering’, the more forceful is the massaging action. This is measured as the amplitude of the percussion. As such, if you see a device that says it has an amplitude of 15-mm, it means that the massager is traveling some 15-mm to deliver the force into the muscles.
Sadly, not all percussion massagers reveal the amplitude or even the pressure of their devices. What’s worse is that I couldn’t find any standard when it comes to the ideal pressure that can provide the best possible effects.
As such, you will have to try the different percussion massagers yourself and determine whether the one you like suits you fine. Luckily for you, I’ve written this review so you can gain an insight into the real-world power of such devices.
This is quite similar to the massage power of the percussion massager we discussed above. These portable massagers utilise small motors to drive the hammering or percussing mechanism. The more powerful the motor is, the more power that is driven to the percussion system.
Most percussion massagers come with an 18-watt rating, although professional-grade devices can come with a rating of 30+ watts. For home use, the 18-watt rating should be sufficient.
However, if you’re into bodybuilding, extreme sports, or any other activity that requires the maximum use of the muscles, then you will need a device with a higher watt rating.
Weight and Overall Design
While not exactly a feature, the weight of the percussion massager will always be an important consideration. Ideally, you’d have to look for something that is heavy enough to let you drive its massage head attachments and give you the results that you expect.
But it should not also be too heavy that you will already have a difficult time lifting it. Remember that you will be holding this device over a targeted muscle group for a few minutes. If it is too heavy, then you may not be able to hold it that long.
The overall design of the percussion massager should also be considered. You should be able to hold it firmly without causing unnecessary discomfort in your hands. It should be able to target the different muscle groups you want to heal.
Personally, I find those gadgets with a long handle like a back scratcher to be more ergonomic and more ideal since I can also massage my back by myself. I don’t need the assistance of anybody else.
There are also those devices that are designed like a gun, complete with a pistol grip. Some individuals may find this design to be perfect. But then again, I will need someone to hold it to massage my back since the design effectively limits the reach of the massage head attachment.
But, that’s just me. You can try to find out which system will work best for you.
Massage Action-specific Attachments
Majority of percussion massagers today come complete with a variety of massager attachments. They should be easily mounted onto the device and removed, too. Hopefully, you’ll pick a gadget that doesn’t require any extra tool to do it.
When it comes to the attachments themselves, different manufacturers have a variety of designs that will help provide a specific massage action. For example, some are shaped like a cone. These are ideal for small muscle groups such as those found in the wrist and the feet. Because of the relatively smaller surface area at the tip of this massager attachment, it can also be used on trigger points.
There are also those that are designed like a ball. Smaller ball-shaped massager attachments are perfect for general use. Larger ball-shaped attachments are great for targeting larger muscle groups such as the glutes, the quads, and other muscles. Sometimes, these attachments are used for relieving soreness of the joints.
There are massager attachments that look like dampeners. These can be used on more sensitive areas as well as over bony prominences since the design itself help to reduce the force delivered to the surface.
It is essential to learn more about these attachments so you’ll be able to pick the system that is right for your needs.
I don’t usually look at a gadget’s noise levels, but I am pretty sure a lot of folks are bothered by a loud noise coming from their devices. This can be a significant factor in your decision to pick one percussion massager over another. If it is not too loud, then you can use it in the office or even in your bedroom while your partner is snoring to his heart’s content.
The noise level of normal conversation with music playing in the background is about 60 decibels. The noise level inside your car while traveling at about 100 KPH is roughly 70 decibels. Do understand that anything higher than 85 decibels is already considered harmful. So, I would naturally go for those percussion massagers that have noise levels of between 60 and 80 dB. But, that’s me.
Percussion massagers are great tools that help release knotted muscles while also aiding in faster muscle recovery after an intense exercise. Knowing what to look for should help you pick the right one.