How To Evaluate Massage Guns

The popularity of massage guns has exploded in recent years. Professional athletes and weekend warriors alike are uber-familiar with brand names like Theragun and Hypervolt. However, not everyone wants to—or needs to—spend $500 on a percussion massager. Amazon is rife with more affordable alternatives, but the sheer number of them makes it nearly impossible to make a choice. If you scroll through the listings, you will see several repeated claims. Every brand says it is “professional grade.” Every brand says it provides a “deep tissue massage” leading to “deep muscle relaxation.” What does any of this mean? How can you tell which massager to add to your life?

One fitness influencer, Jerry Chen, has devised a system to compare massagers according to 6 key factors. In this blog, we will outline the 6 points, and in future posts we will see how NAIPO products compare to those of our competitors in each category. 

The 6 Key Points

  1. Hitting depth
  2. Hitting force
  3. Intensity/frequency
  4. Performance degradation
  5. Hand stability
  6. Heating design

Let’s examine each of these points in turn. 

1. Hitting Depth

Since every massage gun boasts its ability to give the user a “deep tissue massage,” it follows that this would be an important indicator of the product’s value. By filming one user testing out different massage gun brands, you can watch the footage side-by-side to see which device actually makes the biggest indentation on the muscles.

2. Hitting Force

The ability of a massager to knead deep into the muscle only matters if it is able to do so continuously. Many massage guns on the market supply a deep strike then immediately lose power and intensity. The very best brands will continue to provide a forceful massage even as they work long and hard on the promised “deep tissue massage.”

3. Hitting Frequency

Although it is point number 3, this is the underlying reason that massage guns provide relief and relaxation in the first place. The more times a massager is able to strike your tense muscles, the better you are going to feel. Luckily, this criterion is very easy to measure. Simply count how many times each massage gun pulsates in one minute, then compare the results of different brands. 

4. Performance Degradation

The first three factors cover how well the massage works when you first buy it, while the last three deal with long-term usage. If one particular brand of massage gun were to provide the best hitting power and hitting frequency when you first own it, that is not necessarily still the case one month or three months or one year later. It is critical to evaluate in advance how long you can plan on relying on your new massage product. 

5. Hand Stability

An overlooked but still important aspect of massage guns, hand stability simply means how your hand feels when you are using the device. Simply put, if your hand hurts, you will not want to use it even if it provides accompanying relief to other body parts. 

6. Overheating Protection

The very best massage guns rely on a very strong motor, and a very strong motor generates a lot of heat. This means the massage gun must be designed with heat discharge in mind. Since many people using massage guns are sweaty after exercising, it is important that this design is protected against sweat droplets and resulting water damage. If the manufacturer does not pay attention to this aspect of making a great massage product, it is very likely the consumer will have to buy a replacement sooner rather than later. 

Now that we have enumerated the key points to look for when considering massagers, we have to acknowledge the obvious: It is impossible to know how each brand ranks on these measures just by looking at their product listings. For this, it is important to rely on unbiased influencers. You can also reach out to the companies on social media and ask for more information. 

In future blog posts, we will use the above evaluation standard to look at several popular massager brands and hopefully help our readers make an informed decision!