The Best Massage Guns of 2022, Tested and Rated

testing the theragun pro massage gun
Taylor Galla | SPY.com

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Narrowing in on the best massage guns of 2022 took some work. It’s a product category that has continued to expand in the past couple of years, as fitness and massage enthusiasts alike have embraced the convenient portability of these popular devices. In our experience, a massage gun can be a handy tool for recovering from intense workouts, easing muscle soreness throughout the body and providing satisfying deep tissue massage anytime, anywhere. They usually weigh only a few pounds but can provide powerful relief through multiple speeds and intensity levels, making them a device almost anyone can benefit from.

SPY has tested dozens of massage guns since we first began writing about this product category in 2018. To bring you the most elite products, we tested over 24 different massage guns from 14 other brands, including the entire collections from Therabody and Hyperice. We’ve also called in some of the highest-rated massage guns on Amazon and the most popular budget massage guns. We performed rigorous testing on these products to assess criteria such as ergonomic design, battery life, motor power and portability. After years of testing and staying on top of the latest massage gun trends, we’ve narrowed our selection to 16 different massage guns representing various designs and price points.

If you’re looking for the best massage guns of 2022, we’re confident you’ll find them in our guide below.

massage gun testing A selection of the massage guns tested by SPY.com. Taylor Galla | SPY.com

  

The Best Massage Guns at a Glance

For our in-depth massage gun reviews, you can keep scrolling to see the results of our testing. However, we also wanted to develop a quick guide to the top options. When making our selections, we looked at several objective metrics, including the motor speed, intensity settings, the depth it reaches, the tested battery life and the number of massage gun heads it comes with.

Here is an abbreviated list of our favorites. Keep reading for detailed product specs and our favorite features of each of these massage guns:

1. Best Overall: Theragun Prime — $299.99 at Amazon

2. Runner Up: Hypervolt 2 Pro — $399.00 at Amazon

3. Contender: VYBE Premium — $99-$169.99 at Amazon

4. Best Theragun Alternative: Achedaway Pro Deep Tissue Massage Gun — $299.00 at Amazon

5. Budget Buy: Sportneer Elite D9 — $129.99 at Amazon

6. Best Splurge: Theragun PRO — $599.99 at Best Buy

7. Most Portable: Hypervolt GO — $179.00 at Amazon

8. Best Mini Massager: Theragun Mini — $199.99 at Best Buy

9. Quietest: Sonic Percussion Massage Gun — $119.99 at Amazon

10. Best Value: Ekrin B37— $229.99 at Amazon

11. User-Friendly Design: Sportneer K1— $99.99 at Amazon

12. Quality Pick: Hypervolt 2 — $299.00 at Amazon

  

SPY Massage Gun Reviews: Comparing the Best Massage Guns of 2022

best massage guns Just some of the massage guns tested for this review.

After testing out all of the leading massage guns and comparing them based on the criteria above, we selected only the 13 best SPY readers. We tried to choose massagers that would suit a variety of athletes’ needs and budgets, so no matter what you’re looking for, you can find a great massager below. We’ll regularly update this page as new products become available and keep checking back for more massage gun reviews.

1. Theragun Prime

BEST OVERALL

We’ve said it before, and we’ll keep saying it as long as it’s true: if you’re going to splurge on a massage gun, you should buy a Theragun. Therabody consistently makes the best massage guns according to our tests, and Theragun Prime offers the best mix of power and value. The Theragun Prime is Therabody’s flagship model, and we found it a powerful tool for workout recovery and relaxing deep tissue massages at home. We’ve tested the entire Theragun line of massagers, and we think Prime is the best option for most people.

Whether you want to use this as a self-massage tool or give a massage to a client or partner, the ergonomic design makes the Theragun Prime easy to operate and control. We prefer the dial-based controls of the Hypervolt 2 Pro, but on balance, we believe this is the best massage gun available today.

Features We Love: Ergonomic multi-grip, 110 minutes of battery life, 30 pounds of force, five speed settings

Theragun Prime massage gun, best Christmas gifts Courtesy of Best Buy

Pros

  • Easy to hold and operate
  • Great for massaging yourself and others
  • Impressive ergonomic design
  • Great for serious athletes

Cons

  • Twice as expensive as our favorite budget massagers

Noise Level: 67.3-69.1 decibels

 

  

2. Hypervolt 2 Pro

RUNNER UP

The Hypervolt 2 Pro also has a high price tag, but it marries an incredible design with a powerful motor, plus thoughtful features that kept us returning repeatedly. Like the Theragun Prime, it has five speeds, the two fastest of which the average user probably won’t be compelled to use. It has an LED battery level indicator light that wraps around the bottom of the handle, a visually effective feature, and the speed dial on the back streamlines the process of using it more than any other gun we’ve tried. By comparison, the Theragun has button-based speed controls, and adjusting it while the gun is vibrating can be unpleasant.

Hyperice’s massage gun heads, which come with the Hypervolt 2 and 2 Pro, are the best we’ve found. If you prefer the “T” shaped design of traditional massage guns over the triangle design of Theragun, we recommend opting for the Hypervolt line of massage guns instead. Finally, the new generation of Hypervolt guns features a silicone grip handle that makes it easy to hold for long periods.

Features We Love: 3 hours of battery life, powerful 90-watt motor, the best massage gun heads of any brand

Hypervolt 2 Pro, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Incredible battery life
  • Extra intense settings
  • High-quality massage heads
  • Attractive LED display

Cons

  • $100 more expensive than Theragun Prime
  • Highest speed settings will be too intense for casual users

Noise Level: 65.7-72.4 decibels

  

3. VYBE Premium Massage Gun

CONTENDER

VYBE has recently become our favorite budget massage gun, surmounting Sportneer as the go-to brand for a high-quality cheap massage gun under $200. Before this massage gun, we had to crank every budget massage gun up to at least the third intensity level to feel like we were getting effective treatment. Not so with the VYBE — it has a powerful motor and five different intensities, giving you a quality massage for a lower price tag. The user controls on this gun are impeccable, and thanks to indicator lights on the handle, it’s one of the most user-friendly massage guns we’ve tested to date.

Getting 30 pounds of force from a massage gun that’s less than $200 is rare, and you can feel the difference instantly when using the VYBE massage gun. The weight distribution is perfect, and it’s not needlessly large. It fits easily into the palm of your hand, unlike larger models like the Theragun PRO. In addition, Prime Members can often find this massager discounted as low as $99.

Features We Love:  3.5 hours of battery life, 24-volt motor, 30 pounds of force, speeds up to 3,200 reps per minute

Full Review: The Vybe Premium Massage Gun Wowed Us

VYBE Percussion massage gun Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Often discounted to just $99
  • Extra powerful for a budget massager
  • Intuitive user controls

Cons

  • Not as powerful as Theragun or Hypervolt massage guns
  • Fewer massage gun attachments than competitors

Noise Level: 57.9-64.3

  

4. Achedaway Pro Deep Tissue Massage Gun

BEST THERAGUN ALTERNATIVE

Our editors were genuinely impressed with the power, design and feel of the Achedaway massage gun. The 80 pounds of stall force and 16 millimeters of amplitude make a difference and set it apart from the other guns we tested. It’s a top-heavy gun, similar to TriggerPoint’s design, which gives you plenty of juice for maneuvering and digging into sore muscles when needed. All of the head attachments popped on quickly and stayed on during use, and it has a one-button function that makes it super simple to operate, change the speed and turn on/off.

The gun comes with a solid storage case and four different massage gun heads — two that feel very high-quality and two that feel like they’re made of slightly lighter, cheaper plastic. The battery lasts 2.5 hours on a full charge, and the case is well organized with a spot for the charger, gun and each gun head.

One big con is the grip of this gun; it’s a square-shaped handle without any type of silicone grippy texture, which makes it a little hard to hold. If I were to be using a massage gun for extended periods, I would switch to another option that’s easier to hold.

Features We Love: Top-heavy design that makes it easy to use the power of the motor, 2.5 hours of battery life, 16 millimeters of depth

Achedaway massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros:

  • High-quality design
  • Powerful motor
  • 3200mAh battery that’s easy and quick to recharge
  • Included carrying case with spots for each of the four massage gun heads

Cons:

  • No silicone grip, harder to hold than other options

Noise Level: 63.5 decibels

  

4. Sportneer Elite D9 Massage Gun

BUDGET BUY

There are some budget-friendly massage guns worth purchasing, including this pick from Sportneer, but I will say this: with a lower price tag comes a loss in motor power. All the budget-friendly massage guns I tried had less powerful motors than the more expensive ones, and I had to crank them up to a higher speed to get to the same intensity as the first level of the Therabody guns. With that being said, the highest speed levels of the most expensive guns on this list won’t be used by most average users, and I find them unnecessary.

This Sportneer gun packs a few handy features into a sub-$130 price tag, including an easy-to-use speed dial on the back and six interchangeable massage gun heads. It has a nice weight to it without being too heavy, and the handle has silicone material for grip. It comes with a large case with slots for each gun head, a charger and the gun’s body.

Features We Love: 3 hours of battery life at medium speed, 11 millimeters of massage depth, six interchangeable massage gun heads

Sportneer massage gun, best massage gun Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Affordable price
  • Easy-to-use speed dial on the back
  • Carrying case, six interchangeable massage gun heads
  • Very quiet motor

Cons

  • Less powerful than more expensive guns

Noise Level: 58-4-63.7

  

5. Theragun PRO

BEST SPLURGE

We’re going to talk about additional affordable massage guns shortly, but I have to admit when I tried the Theragun PRO, I understood the gargantuan price tag. Does the average person need to purchase a $600 massage gun? Absolutely not. Does the average professional athlete NEED this machine? I’m not convinced of that either. However, it’s impressive and probably one of the best deep tissue massage guns on the market. When you hold it in your hands, it feels like the best this product category has to offer.

It feels like everything about this massage gun has been upgraded beyond its competitors and the other guns in Therabody’s line. It’s larger, heavier, more powerful, and has more interchangeable heads and a much longer battery life. It has two removable lithium batteries that last for 150 minutes each when fully charged. This gun has Therabody’s signature ergonomic multi-grip and a rotatable arm for even more customization.

Features We Love: 300 total minutes of battery life between two removable lithium batteries, 360-degree adjustable ergonomic arm, Supersoft foam massage gun head, QX150 motor — the most powerful one of all the guns we’ve tested

Theragun PRO massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Best Buy

Pros

  • Powerful QX150 motor, which makes it the best deep tissue massage gun on the market
  • High-quality massage gun heads, including a soft foam one made for injuries
  • Large ergonomic multi-grip arm
  • Fancy blue decoration
  • Easy to hold silicone grip

Cons

  • Very loud even at the lowest level due to the powerful motor
  • LCD screen on the back is basic and can be hard to read when the gun is on and vibrating
  • Very expensive price tag

Noise Level: 70.9-76.2 decibels

  

6. Hypervolt GO 2

MOST PORTABLE

One of the main perks of the mini massage gun category is the portability. Massage guns are super easy to travel with. Even the largest ones pack a powerful therapeutic punch in a machine you can carry with you from point A to B. Hyperice took all the bulky, unnecessary parts of a more expensive massage gun and got rid of them with the original Hypervolt GO. Now they’ve streamlined the product even more with the Hypervolt GO 2.

It’s smaller than most regular-sized massage guns without entering mini massage gun territory, and it has two and a half hours of battery life on each charge which is more than enough for most people. It only comes with two massage gun heads, a palm and trigger point, which in my opinion, is all the average user needs. I have a lot of thoughts on massage gun heads, but let’s just say I appreciated not having a hand full of heads I had no interest in using come with this gun — I only had what I needed. This new, upgraded Hypervolt GO design is also more ergonomic than the original version, with a more comfortable grip and weight distribution that significantly improves the user experience.

Features We Love: Streamlined size that’s not as large as a regular massage gun but not mini either, one-button operation for the whole device, grippy silicone handle

Full Review: Hypervolt GO 2 Massage Gun

 

Hypervolt GO 2 massage gun Courtesy of Hyperice

Pros

  • Very lightweight
  • Easy to use
  • Comfortable grip with even weight distribution
  • Only comes with two massage gun heads, a.k.a precisely what you need
  • Powerful motor
  • Moderate noise level

Cons

  • No carrying case

Noise Level: 57.6-66.4 decibels

  

7. Theragun Mini

BEST MINI MASSAGE GUN

If there’s one gun I got to try that I would buy for myself, it’s the Theragun Mini. It’s arguably the only massage gun on this list you need, and it’s my favorite design out of the 20+ guns I’ve tested. It fits perfectly into the palm of your hand, has a perfect amount of power for soothing sore muscles, and it’s super easy to pack. Because of its triangle design, you’re applying direct pressure via the massage gun instead of larger guns where an angle or extra length diverts it. The gun head is directly beneath the arm and hand manipulating it, amplifying its power and usability.

Features We Love: One-button operation comes with smooth pouch for travel, three speeds and 12-millimeter depth

Full Review: Testing the Theragun Mini

Theragun mini massage gun Courtesy of Best Buy

Pros

  • Small, compact size that’s perfect for travel or on-the-go use
  • Very powerful motor for a minigun
  • User-friendly design that gives you complete control over your massage
  • 12 millimeters of depth for soothing, intense percussion therapy

Cons

  • More expensive than other mini massage guns
  • Louder than other mini massage guns due to extra motor power

Noise Level: 66.1-73.1 decibels

  

8. Sonic Percussion Massage Gun

BUDGET BUY

The Sonic massage gun is your answer if you’re looking for the lowest noise level possible. None of the massage guns on this list produce disruptive noise, but some are definitely louder than others. Therabody is among the loudest, followed by Hyperice due to the power of their motors. This gun is weaker than the more expensive massage guns, as I had to crank it up to level 3 to feel anything, but it creates almost no noise at the lower levels.

The square-shaped handle is a tad awkward, but overall it’s easy to hold and not ridiculously heavy. The carrying case didn’t have a slot for all the included massage gun heads, a careless design flaw, but they’re not all necessary either. This gun would be perfect for an older user who doesn’t need a super intense massage and appreciates the quiet.

Features We Love: 5 speed levels, 4 hours of battery life, eight interchangeable massage gun heads

sonic percussion massage gun, best massage gun Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Very quiet massage gun motor
  • Affordable price tag
  • Comes with a carrying case
  • 8 different massage gun heads

Cons

  • Motor isn’t as powerful as other massage guns
  • Massage gun case doesn’t have a spot for every head

Noise Level: 57.3-62.5

  

9. Ekrin Athletics B37 Massage Gun

BEST VALUE

Ekrin Athletics makes an excellent middle-tier massage gun, which we wanted to ensure we included on this list. The handle has an angle slightly larger than 90 degrees, making it more comfortable on your thighs and arms but a little harder to use on your back or the backs of your legs. For these spots, I gripped closer to the head to apply more direct pressure.

It’s a pretty skinny massage gun, making it easier to hold and not unnecessarily heavy. It has five speeds rather than three, which pushes it into the middle tier range especially given its more powerful motor. It’s louder than the Sportneer massage guns but quieter than more expensive guns. In almost all categories, this massage gun falls in the middle.

Features We Love: Easy one-button operation, up to 8 hours of battery life, 56 pounds of force at the highest intensity, five speeds between 1400-3200 reps per minute

Ekrin Athletics B37 massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Long handle makes this gun easy to use and maneuver
  • Fast massage gun speeds
  • Powerful motor with high force at top level of intensity
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • Heavier than other massage guns
  • Included massage gun case is thicker and bulkier, difficult to pack

Noise Level: 59.4-63.2

  

10. Sportneer K1 Massage Gun

BUDGET PICK

The Sportneer K1 massage gun has an LED panel on the side that incorporates all the buttons you need to operate the gun, making it super easy to use. A battery indicator also backlights the panel LED light that tells you via green, yellow or red glow how much battery life is left, so you’re never left in the lurch. The panel is difficult to see when it’s not on, but when it’s illuminated, it’s very helpful.

It comes in a rounded case which is unique and feels more travel-friendly than the other models I tested; however, it doesn’t hold onto the included massage gun heads as securely as some other models. This gun is also not as easy to hold since there isn’t a different, more grippable texture on the handle, but the streamlined design makes it lighter and still a solid budget pick. It’s also much quieter and less powerful than more expensive massage guns, a common theme with more budget-friendly guns and this brand in particular.

Features We Love: The illuminated side panel that shows speed and battery level, small and portable size, five massage gun speeds, 3 hours of battery life, stripped down and simple design

Sportneer K1 massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Simple design that’s very user-friendly
  • Circular case that’s a unique shape
  • Six different interchangeable massage gun heads
  • Easy to recharge

Cons

  • Not as powerful as more expensive massage guns
  • Can’t see side control panel when the gun is off
  • Carrying case doesn’t hold massage gun heads securely

Noise Level: 57.8 – 63.4

  

11. Hypervolt 2

QUALITY PICK

The upgraded version of Hyperice’s original Hypervolt massage gun deserves to be on this list because it has a simple, user-friendly design and a powerful motor. It’s straightforward to set up, has the same LED battery indicator light as the 2 Pro and has three different speeds — an ideal number for most users. The first speed was plenty therapeutic for me most of the time, I rarely found myself wanting to go to the second speed and rarely reaching the third. This gun is slightly louder than the Hypervolt 2 Pro, but not ridiculously so, and the silicone handle has a textured detail that makes it even easier to hold.

Hyperice makes great massage guns that do the trick recovery-wise. They will help your muscles feel better, and while I like the Hypervolt 2 Pro more as a tool, the Hypervolt 2 is a solid bet if you want to spend a little less and opt for a more straightforward gun.

Features We Love: 3 massage gun speeds, weighs only 1.2 pounds total, 3 hours of battery life and five massage gun heads with an included carrying case just for them

Hypervolt 2 massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Long battery life
  • Massage gun heads feel high-quality and easy to change between
  • Easy to operate and charge
  • LED battery level indicator light that’s color-coded, so you always know how much power you have left

Pros

  • No carrying case
  • Not as easy to grip and massage yourself as it is with Therabody’s guns
  • Louder than less powerful massage guns

Noise Level: 66.4 – 68.5

  

12. Theragun Elite

FOR MASSAGING OTHERS

The Theragun Elite massage gun is a little like the awkward middle child for whom you have to search to find their “special talents.” At first, I wasn’t quite sure why Therabody had made the Theragun Elite. The PRO was their professional-grade, ultra-powerful massage gun, the Prime was their gun for the everyday user, and the mini was their portable solution: so why did they make the Elite? I’m still not sure, but it has some excellent features.

It provides an excellent premium option that’s not bonkers expensive like the PRO. It has many, but not all, of the features the PRO has. The area where the Elite shines the most is in massaging others. Due to its weight and the silicone grip handle, it’s perfect for giving others percussion therapy on hard-to-reach areas, including the lower back, trap muscles and back of the calves. The carrying case for this gun and the PRO both feel very high-quality, and the LED screen, while small, is easy to read.

Features We Love: Large multi-grip very similar to the PRO, shiny luxe body, QX65 motor with 40 pounds of force and 16 millimeters of depth, five massage gun speeds between 1750 and 2400 reps per minute, five massage gun heads

Theragun Elite massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Best Buy

Pros

  • Less expensive price tag than the PRO with many of the same features
  • Powerful motor with five different speeds
  • Quieter operation than the Theragun PRO, even at its highest speed
  • Very easy to use to massage yourself and others

Cons

  • Expensive price tag
  • LCD screen that displays speed can be hard to read when it’s vibrating

Noise Level: 68.2-71.8 decibels

  

13. Renpho Massage Gun

ALSO CONSIDER

We haven’t tested the Renpho massage gun as intensely as the others, but it’s definitely a solid pick for athletic or fit folks who want a cheap massager that checks all baseline boxes. It has many of the same features as the massage guns above, including five speeds up to 3200 reps per minute and a convenient battery primed for recharging. It’s super lightweight, and the brushless motor can run at noise levels as quiet as 45 decibels.

Features We Loved: Super portable, powerful enough motor to ease athletes’ sore muscles, included carrying case

Renpho massage gun Courtesy of Amazon

Pros

  • Very affordable price tag, frequently on sale on Amazon
  • Five massage gun speeds and five interchangeable heads
  • 10-minute auto-shutoff feature to save the battery
  • USB Type C charging

Cons

  • Users have found that the battery life drains quickly, especially at the higher speeds you need for therapeutic relief

Noise Level: 55.7-61.4

  

14. Mebak Deep Tissue Massage Gun

MOST ACCESSORIES

Mebak makes a solid massage gun worth considering, but the most significant selling point is its number and variety of massage gun heads. It has seven massage gun heads, one of the highest numbers of any of the guns we’ve tested. They’re not as high quality as the ones that Therabody includes with their guns, but if you’re into switching them in and out and hitting different parts of your body with a specialized instrument, this gun is a solid choice.

This gun is straightforward to use. The display panel on the back that shows the speed, battery level and on/off status also has a clear label for where you should put your thumb when changing all the settings, and the LED lights are bright and clear.

It’s not as powerful of a gun as other options, and the lower levels barely felt like anything on my quads, but once you crank it up a few notches, it becomes more than enough. It’s also an excellent therapeutic option for folks who don’t want intense percussive therapy or are recovering from an injury and need to keep it light.

Features We Love: A wide selection of 7 different massage gun heads, clear LED display panel on the back, quickly adjustable speed, comes fully charged

Mebak deep tissue massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros:

  • 5 speeds ranging from 640-3,200 reps per minute
  • Very quiet on the lowest level, noise only increases incrementally from there
  • Solid battery life

Cons: 

  • Less powerful motor than other options
  • Motor amplitude is not as deep as other guns

Noise Level: 54.7-61.7

  

15. TOLOCO EM26 Massage Gun

VERY QUIET

After using a decibel meter to detect the same noise levels of all of the massage guns we tested, TOLOCO was one of the quietest. With a noise range of 50.8-58.2, it makes the least amount of noise of any of our budget massage guns. This gun functions well enough, but the quiet noise level does come with a sacrifice in motor power and quality of massage. Other budget massage guns, ranked higher on this list, provide more powerful relief at this price point. However, the gun functions as designed and comes with many interchangeable heads, so we still opted to include it as a budget option.

Features We Love: Great price, easy to adjust controls

TOLOCO massage guns, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros:

  • Extremely quiet motor
  • Affordable price point
  • Comes with a storage case

Cons:

  • Less powerful motor than other options

Noise Level: 50.8-58.2 decibels

  

16. Cryotex Massage Gun

FANTASTIC PRICE

This Cryotex massage gun is another very affordable, less powerful but quieter massage gun option from Amazon, but the price is too big of a selling point for us not to include them. This is a cheap massage gun that feels on par with the TOLOCO and other cheap massage guns, but it’s half the price and the same quality level, which makes it worth including in our book.

This gun has 20 different speeds, and while the first few aren’t very powerful, the higher you go, the more therapeutic the percussive massage becomes. For $50, this gun is perfect if you’re on a very strict budget, and it does have some features worth highlighting.

It has a silicone grip handle with raised notches that go beyond the regular texturization and give you an even better grip. It comes with massage gun heads that are easy to change in and out, and the LED display screen on the back is easy to read and operate.

Features We Love: Super grippy handle with silicone and raised ridges, easy display panel for speed and on/off, sturdy carrying case

Cryotex massage gun, best massage guns Courtesy of Amazon

Pros:

  • 30 different speeds and six different massage gun heads
  • Very easy to change the speed and turn it on and off
  • Super grippy handle
  • Very affordable price

Cons:

  • Less powerful motor
  • Massage gun heads feel cheap

Noise Level: 61.0-64.2 decibels

  

How We Chose the Best Massage Guns

Why should you trust our ranking? We’ve tested dozens of massage guns over the past few years. Between all members of the SPY team, we’ve tested upwards of 24 different massage guns from 14 other brands, including high-end, splurge guns from Therabody and top-rated budget options from Amazon. We carefully tested every feature, including the interchangeable head and button they come with. Some of our favorite massagers offered more than we knew possible in a small handheld device, while others fell short of what we were expecting and didn’t make the cut.

Senior E-Commerce Editor Taylor Galla has tested most of our picks, setting up a testing facility in her home gym where she analyzed everything from grip design to battery life, massage gun head quality and the durability of the cases.

best massage guns Using a decibel meter to test the noise level of the Hypervolt GO 2. Taylor Galla | SPY

It’s no surprise that Therabody took many of the top spots in our ranking, as the quality of their guns is hard to beat. However, they also have price tags that are outside most people’s budgets, so we made sure to factor that into our rankings.

We assessed the massagers we tried for SPY’s massage gun reviews according to the following criteria. Then, we compared the results side-by-side to determine the best options for our readers.

  • Speed Range: Number and range of speed settings
  • Battery Life: How long does the brand claim the battery lasts, and how long it actually lasts
  • Motor: The power, depth and force of the motor
  • Overall Design: Is the gun ergonomically designed? Any “wow” factors? Is it easy to use?
  • Quality and Effectiveness of the Treatment: Does the massage gun feel like it’s making a difference? How effective was it at easing soreness?
  • Noise Level: How loud is it? Is it disruptive? We used a decibel meter to test the noise level of every massage gun on our list; you can find that info and more details on how we conducted this part of our tests below.
  • Storage Options: Does it come with a case? How easy is it to store and move around with?
  • Self Massage vs. Others: How easy is it to massage yourself? How about another person?

We tested battery life by turning on each gun and letting them buzz until the battery drained. Some of them have an auto-shutoff feature to save the battery, and in that case, we kept track of when/if the battery was dead when we wanted to use it throughout the 3-week testing period. None of the guns lost their power at a noticeably quick pace while sitting idly.

We tested the ability to self-massage and massage others by using the gun on ourselves in difficult-to-reach places like the lower back and others. Many of the guns were easier to use pointed at others’ backs, but the Theraguns were noticeably simple to grip no matter where you needed to aim them.

We tested the noise level of each massage gun by turning each gun on and using a decibel meter to detect the decibel rate of each massage gun’s speed. After the ranked massage gun list below, you can read more about our process for detecting noise levels for each massage gun.

A note about massage gun heads: 

Many massage guns tout the number of interchangeable massage gun heads included with the gun as a plus and use them as a selling point. However, our product testers found that the number of attachments a gun has matters less than the quality of the gun itself. Also, the most used massage gun heads in our tests were the palm, trigger and ball-shaped heads. All the others were barely used and largely deemed unnecessary.

Click here to read more about SPY’s product testing and review process.

  

Massage Gun Benefits

A massage gun can benefit you and your body even if you’re not a regular at the gym. If your muscles are frequently taxed from intense weightlifting, running, cycling, yoga or other activity, having a massage gun around can be very handy for recovery. They’re relatively small, portable, wireless and can be used anywhere on the body with relative ease.

Massage guns are a great way to supplement professional massage therapy from a masseuse at home and reduce your muscle soreness and pain with a portable, easy-to-use device. Massage guns are designed to help stimulate blood flow to targeted areas and reduce pain post-workout to help your body recover. They also help scramble up fascia so your body can reorganize it post-workout and grow stronger. I love using massage guns because they’re great for overall muscle maintenance and recovery alongside a rigorous stretching routine and consistent foam roller use. They’re great for quickly easing pain in hot spots and super sore areas and are relaxing to use after a long day or grueling training session.

If you want to invest in the best massage guns, then the brands to know are Theragun and Hypervolt. The lower your price, the more you will sacrifice in quality. However, another critical factor in receiving the benefits of any massage gun is knowing how to use it effectively. We’ve created a guide on using massage guns that any user, new or experienced, will find helpful.

Testing theragun mini

  

How to Clean and Store Massage Guns

Thankfully, massage guns don’t require much maintenance to stay in good condition. Most of the time, you can wipe them down with a simple household disinfectant wipe to remove any grime and keep them in their storage case as a best practice. If you’re using them during or after a workout when your skin is sweaty, you might want to wipe them down quickly after use. Otherwise, regular cleanings can be few and far between.

One note I have is to keep track of your chargers. Massage guns require a specific charging cable distinct from other devices, so you’ll want to ensure you always have it handy. I recommend keeping it plugged in at a designated spot in your home or in the case.

SPY testing the Theragun PRO massage gun Taylor Galla | SPY

  

Why Trust SPY When Shopping for the Best Massage Guns?

We’ve tested 20 top-rated massage guns over the past four years, and our Senior E-Commerce Editor Taylor Galla spent three weeks testing each of the top massage guns for sale in 2022. Taylor Galla has been testing massage guns for years and is a certified yoga teacher and a fitness enthusiast familiar with the recovery space. She compared every massage gun on this list to dozens of other models and tested it against the strict criteria we outlined above. She let 10 massage guns vibrate for hours in her home until their batteries died, tested different percussive speeds on different body parts to feel the intensity, and swapped massage gun heads in and out to test their durability and feel.

After all this time, SPY editors have become experts in this product category and won’t steer you wrong. Every massage gun on this list is one we would purchase for our loved ones suffering from muscle soreness or our partners whose necks cramp up after sitting at a computer all day.

  

Frequently Asked Questions About Massage Guns

What Are Massage Guns?

Massage guns are percussive therapy devices that provide deep-tissue massage to muscle groups throughout the body anywhere via strong, powerful, relatively quiet motors. They often come with multiple speed and intensity settings, and some come with interchangeable heads. They offer relief and recovery in a handheld package.

What Is the Best Massage Gun?

The best massage gun for you depends on a lot of things — your unique body, your recovery needs and your budget. After testing dozens of massge guns, we believe that Therabody makes the best massage guns, and the company is most known for its Theragun collection. We believe the Theragun Prime is the best overall massage gun. Of course, Theragun products are expensive, and after extensive testing, we believe the Vybe Premium Massage Gun is the best budget option.

How Do You Use a Massage Gun?

Good question. We've got a whole guide on the best ways to use a massage gun. We recommend starting on the lowest setting and sensing your comfort level from there. Point the gun directly at your muscle and let the head massage your tissues, moving across the muscle group. Avoid joints, bony points or super sore spots. They're excellent for working out knots, kinks or sore muscles — but you want to make sure it's the good kind of discomfort rather than the painful kind. Please consult a doctor or physical therapist before starting any new injury recovery regimens.

How Often Should You Use a Massage Gun?

This depends on the individual, but no more than once a day is a good rule of thumb. Because of the intensity of percussive therapy, every time you use one you are introducing tiny traumas to your muscular tissues, so you want to be tactful about how hard and often you're using a massage gun. They can be great for quick sessions right before or after a workout, or right before bed to calm the body.

What Is the Best Budget Massage Gun?

Massage guns tend to be expensive, but their popularity has spurred the creation of some super high-quality budget options. Currently, our pick for the best budget massage gun is the Vybe Premium Massage Gun, which has an impressive amount of power and depth for the price. Previously, we've named the Sportneer Elite D9 Massage Gun the best cheap massage gun, and both options can be purchased for under $150.

Remember: not every cheap massage gun is worth purchasing. There are lots of massage guns under $100 on Amazon, but not all of them are worth your money.

What Is the Best Massage Gun for Travel?

If you're regularly on-the-go and want to take your massage gun with you, then the Hypervolt Go is a solid pick. We've tested this one hands-on, and it's got a compact design that's easy to throw in a suitcase or backpack. It's got a high-torque, QuietGlide motor as well as three different speeds to choose from up to 3200 RPM. It only weighs 1.5lbs, so it's lightweight and easy to use, and it's TSA-approved to bring in any carry on suitcase.

What Is 'Depth' in Terms of Massage Guns?

Many massage gun brands tout the "depth" of their massager, and this refers to the distance the massage gun head travels from its starting position. If you want a true deep tissue massage, then a greater depth is desirable. In our testing, we found that this was an important differentiator between different models.

How Much Should You Pay for a Massage Gun?

In general, we recommend spending between $150 and $300 when shopping for massagers. After completing dozens of massage gun reviews, we've found that the majority of our favorite products fall in that price range. The Theragun Prime, the best overall product in this category, costs $299 (although it's often on sale), while our favorite budget massager, the Vybe Premium Massage Gun, costs $150.

Is Bluetooth worth it when buying a massage gun?

A few of the luxe massage gun options from Therabody included in our picks above come with Bluetooth capabilities that enable you to build a custom recovery plan in the Therabody app, sync it with your gun and run it from there. This recovery plan may include switching between different intensities for different amounts of time, and moving the gun to certain parts of your body depending on the intensity being used, much like a physical therapist would.

Our editors didn't find this feature particularly useful and more a way for the brand to bolster their products and call them "smart." In reality, we believe that most folks will turn on their massage gun, adjust the speed based on where their body needs soothing and go from there. You don't need to overcomplicate it with Bluetooth; you can receive the same benefit from using the gun without an app.

Can you travel with massage guns?

You might be wondering: can you travel with massage guns? The answer is yes! For the most part, massage guns can be carried on or put in a checked bag if they don't have removable lithium-ion batteries. Any loose lithium batteries are prohibited in checked bags and will need to be carried on and most likely inspected by a TSA agent.

I've traveled with multiple massage guns in my suitcases before with no problems, and my bags haven't been searched. However, most online resources note that whether or not a massage gun makes it past a security checkpoint is at the discretion of the TSA officer on duty. If they'd prefer you check the bag, you have to check it.

  

Updates: The product selection in this review was last updated on July 15, 2022. On that date we added the Archedaway Massage Gun as our top Theragun alternative, because of the impressive quality of the gun, the user-friendly design and impressive casing. We also added the Mebak, Cryotex and TOLOCO massage guns to our round-up, at the bottom as fantastic budget-friendly alternatives, after extensive testing of all three high-rated brands. We also added details on our noise level testing process, after using a decibel meter to gauge the exact noise level range of each gun in our round-up. 

Previously, this article was updated on April 11, 2022. At that time, we added additional reviews of the Theragun Elite, Theragun PRO, Sportneer and Sonic massage guns. We also replaced the Hypervolt GO with the Hypervolt GO 2, the updated version of Hyperice’s most portable massage gun. 

  

We Tried Out Every Theragun Massage Gun – Here’s How They Stack Up Against Each Other