Handheld Massagers

Wednesday, 9 November 2005 | Tags: , ,

Massage has been used for centuries to relax sore and tired muscles, and to manage pain. When a professional massage session isn't feasible, you can try a handheld massager. We try some out to see if one soothes better than the rest.

The Basics

  • Handheld massagers can be a manual tool (usually wood or plastic) that your roll/rub over your muscles, or a power model that provides a deeper, penetrating massage.

  • Power massagers are available with various power and speed settings, as well as different attachments tailor your massage. The more bells and whistles, the higher the price.

  • Many people prefer different levels of massage intensity, so find a power massager with various speeds.

  • A massager with a thumping or percussive motion delivers a deeper massage by getting through the skin to the muscle. However, a massager with a constant, fast vibration won’t penetrate through the skin or bring you much relief

Other Considerations

  • Attachments can customize your massage and include things like a gel attachment for a gentle massage or an infrared attachment to heat things up.


We treated ourselves to treatments with these four different handheld massagers:

  • Fruits of Passion (wooden, manual): $12.00
  • Conair Therapy Massager (power with four attachments and infrared heat): $48.35
  • Homedics (power with two pivoting heads): $89.99
  • Thumper Mini-Pro (power): $269.00

Usage Test

  • The Conair was favoured for its four different attachments that allowed you to customize your massage with heat.

  • The wooden Fruits of Passion massager was simple and the most relaxing experience, with no pounding or buzzing to interfere with a serene moment.

Strength Test

  • For those who like a deeper tissue massage, the Thumper had the most strength and power.


For a deep tissue massage, the Thumper is your best bet, if you don’t mind the price. However, the Conair provided the most versatility and customization at a more affordable price, and the wooden Fruits of Passion massager worked well too. Our expert advises that massagers are a quick way to relaxation, but be sure to seek medical advice if you suspect you’ve injured yourself. 


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