What are the benefits of a massage gun?
Massage has been proven time and time again to be an extremely beneficial modality for not only overall general wellness, but for numerous other health conditions too. There really is no shortage of scientific studies conducted to show that various forms of massage are helpful for a wide variety of ailments, including DOMS, fatigue, stress, any many others.
Some potential benefits of a massage gun include:
- Improved range of motion
- Increase in athletic performance
- Enhanced mental clarity
- Increased blood circulation
- Decrease in back / muscular pain
- More restful sleep
- Decreases stress and anxiety
- Improved muscle recovery after an intense workout
- Boosts your immune system
- Increases energy level
How often should you use a massage gun?
Knowing how often to use a massage gun will largely depend on the individual. Using a massage gun can be a wonderful thing. Not only will it help with muscle recovery, but for most people it just plain feels amazing.
However, it’s important to remember that by using a massage gun, you are physically introducing micro-traumas to the body. Some percussion/vibration has been shown to be very effective for things like DOMS. Too much and you’re likely to make the problem worse.
Here are some general guidelines on how often or how much to use a massage gun:
- Muscle Activation- 30 Seconds: Before a workout or activity, target your muscles with the massage gun for up to 30 seconds to activate the muscles and nerve fibers.
- Muscle Re-Activation- 15 Seconds: Mid-workout and feeling a little tired? Muscles starting to fatigue or spasm? Give them a little boost with another 15 second session.
- Recovery and Pain Relief- 2 Minutes: Post workout or when DOMS set in, you can safely use your massage gun for up to 2 minutes on each muscle group. This process can be repeated throughout the day with at least 1-2 hours rest in between.
If you’re new to massage guns, assess your tolerance by using the massage gun no more than once a day.
Can you use a massage gun for neck pain?
If used with caution, you can use a massage gun on your neck. Poor posture, extended periods of sitting, and weak cervical muscles all contribute to neck pain. In fact, a study found that 20-70% of all adults experience neck pain during their lifetime.
To use a massage gun for neck pain, we recommend that you first assess your tolerance to the percussive forces produced by the massage gun. Applying too much pressure could potentially exacerbate the neck pain.
Every massage gun has a different power rating, so always start off on the lowest setting as you work your way around the neck muscles. Be particularly vigilant around the base of the skull as that area has a higher concentration of nerve endings.
If your massage gun comes with a cushioned attachment head, we advise you to try that one first. Also, the fork head is a great option to use along the cervical spine to avoid the discomfort of hitting the spine.
As always, use extreme caution using a massage gun for neck pain. If the pain persists or does not go away, consult with your doctor.
The information provided here is for educational purposes only.
Can I use a massage gun while pregnant?
*DISCLAIMER* If you are pregnant, always consult with your doctor before using a massage gun or any other therapeutic device.
A massage gun can be an invaluable palliative solution for the pregnant mother-to-be. Most woman over the course of their pregnancy will develop some degree of pain, most commonly in the lower back, pelvic area, or between the shoulder blades to name a few.
In general, if caution is practiced, the use of a massage gun for many of these regions of the body should be completely safe. We recommend that you start off slow to fully assess how your body responds.
Use of the massage gun on the stomach or anywhere in the vicinity would be contraindicated. Again, consult with your doctor anytime you experience pain before deciding to use a massage gun while pregnant.
Can a massage gun help lower back pain?
It’s estimated that a whopping 80% of all adults will experience back pain sometime in their lifetime. While it’s extremely important to first consult your doctor to determine the exact cause of your lower back pain, one common cause is tight, overworked muscles. If that’s the case, a massage gun can be an excellent adjunctive therapy tool to help your lower back pain.
If the pain you are experiencing in your low back is acute, we recommend that you start off on a lower setting to assess your pain tolerance. Allow plenty of time in between massage sessions to assure you are not exacerbating your low back pain condition.
For more information on how to properly use a massage gun, start here.