I’m really old. And that means I get hurt most of the time. But because I’ve made the sage decision not to have any kids, I’ve been able to invest their college money in a high-quality standing desk and chair. Nonetheless, having spent endless hours trying to decide which gun to remove means I still get back pain sometimes. Over the years I’ve been working with a personal trainer (thanks again, childlessness) who swears by massage guns to loosen tense and knotty muscles.
You’ve probably seen these things, which look like meme weapons that no one uses in arena shooters, run by fitness influencers on the ‘gram. You’ve probably also wondered, quite reasonably, why I take a handheld pneumatic hammer and literally apply it to my body. I felt the same way the first time I did the experiment on myself, and I immediately had to ask “Are my pupils vibrating in their pockets?” Which actually turned out to be: “BrrRrrrrrrrrrEeyyeZzzzz?”
The answer, I was assured, is yes. And honestly, in the meantime I’ve fallen in love with the vibrating kiss of the massage gun at the end of my pretty middle-aged workout routine. The technology has also gotten pretty cool, if not so cheap, over the past two years. These days I like to have one hand of mine to blast the ol’ trap after a long day of pushing the mouse around. So far, the science surrounding the benefits of being boosted by the Fisher Price power tool appears to be still developing,
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read aroundVibration-based therapy is very well understood, but the benefits of a more percussive approach are still being researched and debated. From what I’ve read so far, part of the theory is that by creating a unique sensation in a target area, your brain focuses on that experience, which enables it to relieve existing stress. What I can say is that 1) initially skeptical now I really like the experience and treat it as a treatment whenever my back hurts. 2) I don’t think a few light whispers will have a transformative effect in terms of turning you into an elite athlete.
If you want to feel like delightfully kneaded pizza dough with me, there are deals to be found on two of the most well-known brands (both I’ve used quite a bit). My trainer always expressed a strong preference for the Hypervolt. The entry-level Go is 20% off right now, and $160 is its lowest price on Amazon.
$199 $159 on Amazon (Save $250)
HyperVolt Go, as the name suggests, is designed to be used on the move. At 1.5lbs it can easily be thrown in a rucksack with your gaming laptop. Next thing you know, LAN parties are just too sexy. I mean athletic.
If you’re really committed to the self-tendering life, there’s 25% off at Theragun Elite for $299. The only other time it was that low was last Black Friday. This triangular-shaped handle makes it easy to hit difficult spots like your scapula that the Hypervolt Go can struggle with.
Theragun Elite (4th Gen) |
$399 $299 on Amazon (Save $100)
This is a good price on a more serious massage gun. It’s quieter by comparison, if you’re worried about annoying fellow gym-goers (or more likely to scare the cat), and comes with the HyperVolt’s two-in-five attachments. Honestly, this is what I would go for.
If you’re still not sold on gunning yourself up in the name of looser glutes, there are certainly other options. On the cheap end of the spectrum, a basic foam roller will do wonders for you myofascial release, I’m not going to lie though: Rolling is exhausting, and less enjoyable for me than going over a gun. Or, if money is no object, you might consider a gaming chair that includes masseurs, which obviously sounds awesome, but our George was tested in May with this $900 one.