Massage Guns – Are they helpful, or not?
I’m sure many of you have seen or tried using a massage gun. It looks kind of like a drill and with a rubber mallet at the end that pulses against your skin. You may have even seen the slow motion videos where you can see the very satisfying rippling effect it has across the skin’s surface.
First, let’s talk about what a massage gun actually does. It’s called percussion therapy. Essentially, the gun hits a targeted muscle with rapid bursts, much like a massage therapist would do with strikes. Percussion therapy can help bring blood flow to the targeted area, loosen tense and stuff fascia, and reduce muscle tension. It can also be used pre-workout to help promote blood flow to the muscle groups being used.
These guns have become very popular recently, mostly because they are super convenient and accessible. You don’t need to set up a time with a massage therapist, and you can work on yourself in the comfort of your own home. However, there are TONS of misconceptions around massage guns and their practical uses.
What massage guns are good for, and what they are not good for
Massage guns are great for temporarily relieving muscle soreness & bringing blood to a area that needs flushing. They can definitely be a helpful too in your toolbox. But they shouldn’t be the only tool. Massage guns are to be used a short term bandaid while you find the actual problem. If you are needing to hit yourself with the gun every day in the same area, it is likely you have a larger issue at hand than a sore and tight muscle. What is the reason why that muscle feels tight to begin with? Overuse? Lack of mobility/flexibility? Strength imbalances & overcompensation? Poor movement quality? Whichever it is, the solution is not hammering yourself with a massage gun, even if it helps you feel better in the short run. So while it might help you relieve some pain, expect things not to get better until you find and address the root cause.
If you’re dealing with pain that has lasted multiple weeks and you’ve been stretching, foam rolling, and massage gunning to no avail, send us a message and we will help you find what the real reason is for you pain and help you correct it!