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Massage guns are the latest high-tech active recovery tools that are popular among athletes, weightlifters, and regular people suffering from chronic pain who want the benefits of massage therapy at home.
Most massage guns utilize percussive therapy; meaning that the device vibrates to help your muscles recover faster, improve range of motion and flexibility, and encourage blood flow. These guns can also help you sleep better.
Theragun claims that their product can help improve your sleep by “downregulating the nervous system”. We recommend that you use percussive massage guns for two-three minutes on each muscle group to help you relax and calm down before falling asleep.
The best massage gun for sleep is the TimTam Power Massager. Our favorite thing about it is that it is has a higher power output compared to other popular brands. We tested a variety of different massage gun products to determine which ones are best for people suffering from insomnia and other sleep disturbances. These are our favorites.
Our favorite massage gun brands
- Best high-powered massage gun: TimTam Power Massager
- Best high-end massage gun: Theragun G3PRO
- Best quiet massage gun: Hyperice Hypervolt Plus
- Best affordable massage gun: Sonic Handheld Portable
#1. TimTam Power Massager
Check price | Best high-powered massage gun
TimTam is by far our favorite high-powered percussive massage device. The sheer power of the TimTam makes it great for athletes and other highly active individuals who need something more robust than most other massage guns. If you weren’t already aware, this is the brand that Joe Rogan and legendary MMA coach Firas Zahabi personally use.
We found that this gun did a great job of hitting the deeper layers of soft tissue that less intense massage methods might not be able to reach. If you have a high pain tolerance, you might want to opt for something a little less intense with lower power settings.
Who it’s for: TimTam is great for highly active individuals who need intense percussion to massage deep layers of soft tissue. People who have tried other massagers and found that they weren’t intense enough will definitely appreciate the raw power of the TimTam.
#2. TheraGun G3PRO
Check price | Best high-end massage gun
As one of the more expensive massage guns, the TheraGun G3PRO is for people who are serious about recovery and want a top of the line product. The G3PRO is designed to relieve the muscle soreness, tension, and pain that is keeping you up a night.
The TheraGun G3PRO was designed by MIT researchers to be as quiet and effective as possible. One thing we love about this model is that it is fully customizable; with an adjustable arm that can be set up in four different positions, two different speeds, six attachments, and removable batteries that can be swapped out.
The G3PRO also comes with a mobile app to help guide you while using your massage gun.
Who it’s for: The TheraGun G3PRO is for people who don’t mind spending some serious cash to get a truly high-end product. Since it has an adjustable arm, it’s great for people who aren’t as flexible and want the benefits of myofascial release in hard to reach areas.
#3. Hyperice Hypervolt Plus
Check price | Best quiet massage gun
The second generation of the Hypervolt brings added functionality and performance to an already popular product. What helped the Hypervolt Plus earn its spot on this best-of list is the fact that it’s extremely quiet.
Our reviewers really liked how they could use this massage gun on the highest setting without hurting their ears. We’ve received reports that people even use this to massage their neck and shoulders without needing to turn up the TV, which is unheard of with most other brands.
If you’re using a massage gun before bedtime, you’ll most likely want it to be as quiet and relaxing as possible. A loud hammering noise while you’re trying to wind down for bedtime is the last thing you need.
Who it’s for: We recommend the Hypervolt Plus for people who are going to be using it just before bedtime or other situations where being quiet is essential. If you don’t want to disturb family members or draw attention to yourself while using your massage device then the Hypervolt Plus is a great choice.
#4. Sonic Handheld Percussion Massage Gun
Check price | Best affordable massage gun
Coming in at just under $200, the Sonic is one of the most affordable options if you want a premium percussive massage gun. There are some brands making products that are way cheaper, but you’re going to compromise on performance with those. The Sonic is just as good as any of the other more popular brands, but it doesn’t have all of the features that those products have.
We’re happy to report that the Sonic is extremely quiet. You can use this while in a room with other people without causing any disturbances. It comes with five different intensities and five different massage heads that are designed for different areas on your body.
Who it’s for: The Sonic is for someone who doesn’t want to shell out $400+ for a massage gun but still wants high-end performance. While the brand isn’t a household name, the products they make are just as good as brands like TimTam and TheraGun.
How to use a massage gun to get better sleep
We think that the sleep recommendations that TheraGun provides are perfect for falling asleep faster and staying asleep longer. The company recommends using a massage gun on each area of your body – arms, glutes, legs, back, etc – for two minutes at a time.
If you have knots, we recommend massaging around the knot using one of the provided massage head attachments instead of directly on the knot itself. This will help gradually loosen it without excessive pain.
What you should look for when buying a massage gun
Portability: If you’re going to use your massage gun while traveling, it’s important that you get one that’s easy to carry with you. Most massage guns are handheld, meaning that they’re small enough to fit in a suitcase. Some can be a little more bulky than others (looking at you, TimTam). If you know that you’re going to bring your massager with you while traveling, we recommend buying a brand that comes with it’s own carrying case for protection.
Power and speed: Speed settings and raw power are the main differentiation between massage gun brands. Some brands only have one or two settings, while others have five or even more. Everyone has different preferences and pain tolerances, and you should take that into consideration when reading reviews and shopping.
Percussion vs. vibration: Most massage guns use a percussion effect, but there are some that vibrate instead. It’s important to keep this difference in mind when doing your research.
Attachments: There are a wide variety of different attachment heads that you can use with your massage gun. Some brands only come with one, while others come with a suite of attachments that you can use for different body parts. If you’re only going to massage large muscle groups (like your back or legs) then you’ll need larger attachments. For use on specific areas or trigger points you’ll need specific attachments that are designed for that purpose.
Cost: There’s no way around it: massage guns are crazy expensive. Premium brands like TimTam and TheraGun are going to be the priciest. If you have the cash to spare and you want the best that money can buy, you should definitely consider one of those brands. Others like Sonic are much cheaper. Take a look at the features and reputation of each product and decide if the extra benefits of an expensive unit are worth it for you.
Battery life: Make sure that the massage gun you buy has long enough battery life for your needs. As with any other electronic device, there’s nothing worse than low battery life.