1. Types of Massagers
Massagers come in all shapes and sizes, with many focusing on a particular body part. Certain areas of the body are often more tense than others due to working on computers, lifting heavy items, driving long distances or extended periods of walking and standing. The five main massagers are:
- Foot Massagers
- Shoulder Massagers
- Neck Massagers
- Leg Massagers
- Back Massagers
There are also numerous handheld devices that offer a whole-body massage experience.
2. How do personal massagers work?
Personal massagers are designed to be as intuitive as possible for you to use, so you will not have to develop any particular expertise or skills. Massagers use various technologies to achieve results, including:
Heating elements - relaxes muscles by warming them
Vibration - the percussive motion reduces muscle tension
Rollers - surface rollers create the sensation of a shiatsu massage
Acupressure - some massagers have soft points on the surface to stimulate areas on the skin
When buying a personal massager, you will also have to decide how you would like it to operate. Some massagers require no electrical power, making them ideal for people who are on the move, while others are battery operated. Massagers that use heat will often need to be plugged into electrical sockets, meaning they are best used at home.
3. Massager Products
There are several common massager products available, with several designed for specific purposes and locations.
Car-seat massager: Attach over the car seat for use while driving. They plug into the car's charging device and often provide heat functions.
Massage chair: Sit back and relax in a comfortable massage chair. These devices can recline and tend to have multiple settings for different areas of the body.
Handheld roller: These massagers stimulate pressure points when they are rolled over the skin. They are made from various materials, including wood, plastic and rubber.
Neck massager: Designed to either wrap around the neck or act as a cushion. Some work on pressure points.
Foot massager: These can be purchased as electric, mechanical or water-based models. The latter use water jets or a vibrating base to relieve tension in the feet.
Calf and leg massager: Users can benefit from an acupressure or shiatsu massage, with rollers and compression working on the thighs and calves.
Shower massager: Often a shower sprayer that has massage functions. These are often handheld.
4. Other Features
Before buying a massager, there are a number of questions you should ask yourself to ensure you are purchasing the right model for your needs.
- How comfortable is the device after extended use?
- Does it provide heat as well as massage functions?
- Will multiple features be required? If not, a cheaper model may be an option
- Is there a timer? This can prevent you from falling asleep during your massage
- Will filling and emptying a water-based feet massager be an inconvenience? Opting for an electric version can overcome this
- How long is the power cord? Will a battery-powered model provide more flexibility?
- Is the product easily transported? Some massagers can be extremely bulky, although this won't matter if they will remain in one place
- Are the controls intuitive and easy to use?