Researchers recently reviewed nearly 100 different medical studies focused on exercise recovery and workout performance.
They found that there are many popular methods that athletes use to reduce muscle damage, prevent delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), speed up muscle repair and boost strength and agility.
But there was only one specific option that was especially effective: massage therapy.
"Massage [may be] the most effective method for reducing DOMS and...fatigue," concludes the report published in the Frontiers in Physiology research journal.
The Rise of the Percussion Massage Gun
Capitalizing on the effectiveness of massage for both elite athletes and weekend warriors, percussion massage guns have stormed the market.
They offer a convenient way to target sore muscles and press deep into specific spots on your body that may need a recovery boost.
Think of them as a more modern, automated alternative to foam rollers. Using anything from strong vibrations to kneading or punching movements, these massage guns offer a convenient, portable form of deep soft tissue manipulation and self-myofascial release.
First gaining popularity back in 2016, percussion therapy guns are now available in a wide range of price points and with numerous features tailored to different needs. With each generation comes better and new features. For example, two newer models — the TimTam Power Massager PRO and the LifePro Fusion FX — apply heat therapy when massaging you, which may boost circulation and reduce inflammation for even speedier recovery.
In this article, we will talk specifically about the two massage guns above---the ones that offer massage therapy along with heat therapy.
The TimTam Power Massager PRO
There's a reason that Joe Rogan and MMA coach Firas Zahabi talked on and on about the TimTam Power Massager Pro on episode #83 of Rogan's MMA show.
“I've been a fan of that TimTam [massage gun] since [Firas Zahabi] brought it in here,” says Rogan. “Now there's a new one that's [expletive] ten times better with heat. The new TimTam with heat is incredible.”
"It's the most powerful machine in the game," chimes in Zahabi.
"Listen folks, I'm not blowing smoke up his [expletive],” Rogan laughs. “The old one is amazing. This one is even better. And the heat function? Incredible.”
TimTam was started by CrossFit coach Kelly Starrett and MMA fighter Georges St-Pierre, so they know a thing or two about what top-notch athletes need for their post-workout recovery. And the TimTam Power Massager PRO delivers.
Sure, it’s priced higher than most other massage guns on the market. But true to its name, it offers pro-level features not seen in many other guns.
Users are quick to point out that while it delivers percussions at an astounding 2,800 strokes per minute (and an exceptional stroke length of 32mm), it’s lighter and quieter. In fact, it weighs only 2 lbs. And has tested as quiet at 10 decibels, making it the quietest massage gun on the market.
To power all these new features, TimTam developed a new battery that lasts up to 60 minutes long, so you can pack the Power Massager PRO in your gym bag without fear that it’ll be dead on arrival.
- The most premium, top-of-the-line option from TimTam
- 175-degree arm rotation for extreme access to all your sore muscles
- Quietest massage gun on the market at just 10 decibels on its lowest setting
- Anti-microbial plastics
- Speeds range from 900 RPM to 2800 RPM, with four preset program settings
- Order comes with a bunch of freebies such as heated massage ball, metal tips, and a wireless pulse massager/TENS device
- Manufacturer’s warranty only lasts for 90 days
- Pricier than competitors
- Built-in GPS tracker constantly drains the battery, even when gun is not in use.
- Some reviewers find the one-touch trigger too sensitive and inadvertently turn it on when they’re not ready.
The LifePro Fusion FX Heated Massage Gun
If you want to shorten your recovery time, alleviate chronic pain and long-term injuries and experience fast, quick relief to DOMS, the more budget-friendly heated massager from LifePro may be just what your physiotherapist ordered.
Similar to the TimTam percussion gun, the LifePro gun offers intense heated massage relief thanks to a heated ceramic head. However, there are some unique differentials with the LifePro Fusion FX.
For one, it comes in at up to 3,200 RPMs compared to the TimTam’s 2,800 RPMs.
Like many other massage guns, this gun allows for the use of interchangeable heads, so you can change the type of massage you're getting. For example, their "bullet head" attachment is perfect for releasing muscle knots, while the "shovel head" is ideal for back muscles and tissue surrounding your spinal column.
Finally, it offers a full lifetime warranty so you can trust your investment.
- Exceptional 3,200 RPMs
- Approximately half the price of more premium heated models (including the TimTam PRO)
- Battery can run for a continuous five hours
- Replaceable rechargeable battery for convenience and longevity.
- At 55dB, it is much louder than the TimTam
- Shorter stroke length (10mm) may be limiting for some athletes
- Doesn’t offer the option for anti-microbial construction
You've just read our review of the two heated percussion massage guns. But if you are still undecided as to what massage gun to get, check out our guide below:
Choose the right massager
See our guide on how to choose the right percussion massager for you