Massage guns hit the market a few years ago and have become a really popular recovery tool. They seemed to boom over the pandemic, with people not being able to regularly visit their physio or massage therapist.
In my opinion, if you're using them to solely fix an injury or problem, then you're wasting your time. But they can be quite handy as a tool alongside other approaches. They can provide some instant relief in the feeling of tightness and improve short term range of movement, which can be helpful before rehab exercises. Thinking of that, they can be good for warm ups and are arguably more effective that foam rollers because they are more adaptable and can get in areas where a foam roller cannot.
But there are literally hundreds on the market so how do you know which one to buy? I'll talk you through my top picks.
1. Theragun - The OG.
Theragun are pretty much responsible for the popularity of massage guns. They do tend to be quite pricey so depending on your budget, they might not be for you. They come with a range of attachments much like all of the other massage guns, and a smart carry case.
Their website claims they are more durable than the other gadgets on the market, that they work at a high amplitude which reaches deeper muscles and that their attachments are easy to use and gentler on the body. I'm not confirming nor denying... don't 'shoot' the messenger (sorry, not sorry).
Luckily, Therabody have release a range of different models now so you don't have to spend big to still be able to access their products. Some affiliated therapists also might be able to get hold of one for you at a discounted price.
I would personally go for the lower range models myself, but if you're an athlete or a therapist who will use it on a number of people, maybe it's worth forking out for the expensive models which may have a longer life span.
2. Physion - The Best Value
Physion have pumped a lot of money into their marketing - well I assume so because I see them on my Instagram feed at least 3 times a day.
Similar to Theragun, they have a couple of different models for sale - the Pro and the Mini. At the time of writing this, they seem to be on sale from £300 to £90 (Pro) or £200 to £60 (Mini) - wether or not these are on sale 365 days of the year so in fact aren't actually on sale, I don't know. But £60 is really good value for a quality massage gun.They have thousands of reviews at an average of 5/5 too which shows they're pretty good.
I believe you can pay in instalments if accepted by their finance provider, which makes them really affordable for those not wanting to fork out up front.
They both come with a carry case, charger and at least 4 attachments. The Pro has a handy display screen too with digital buttons to adjust the power. They both impressively claim to last 8 hours of continual use which avoids the need for constant charging.
3. Lotsfit - The Outsider
A bit of a random addition, and one that you might not have heard of - but I really like the Lotsfit mini massage gun. They kindly sent me one (I'm not being paid to say this, I genuinely think it's good) and I was pleasantly surprised by the quality. It came in a small carry bag with all of the typical attachments. For its size, it's really powerful. It could quite easily be the best massage gun I've tried to date.
You can add customisation to the side too, so if you want your name, squad number of business engraved on it you can. They sit at around £80-90 so similar price range to the Physion devices.
Another really good thing that I've not seen anyone else offer yet is a heated attachment. It seems to be a rechargeable attachment that works off its own power and heats up when you turn it on. Then you just click it into the massager and use it as normal. It might be a bit of a gimmick clinically but in terms of pain management and comfort, could be a bit of a game changer. It's an additional purchase but will only cost you around £10 so definitely worth a try.
In my opinion, there isn't much between them all. The cheap ones from Amazon will likely meet your needs, but there's a bit of a question mark over how long they'll last.
I probably wouldn't spend over £100 on one unless you're a professional athlete, therapist or someone who will be using them all day, every day.
If I was going to buy another, I'd go for either the Physio or Lotsfit options, personally.
Hope that helps! If you have a massage gun that you would recommend, let me know in the comments below, or let me know on Instagram!