When you’re looking for a percussion massage gun, naturally you’re thinking about investing in a Theragun device. They’ve been a trusted name in the market for a number of years, delivering on both power and quality.
However their devices are a little pricey:
The basic model starts at around $250 with the more expensive ones reaching $600. You might therefore find yourself shopping for an alternative more within your price range.
We’ve scoured the market and shortlisted five of the best products, comparing their features with the three latest Theragun devices.
5 of the Best Theragun Competitors: Researched and Reviewed
We’ve compared each alternative to the Theragun devices to help you choose the best massage gun based on your needs and budget:
1. Theragun vs PlayMakar Wireless Percussion Massager
Don’t compromise on features with this powerful alternative
When you’re looking for a Theragun alternative, the likelihood is you want something that costs less but doesn’t skimp on power and features.
If that sounds about right:
You may have just met your match in PlayMakar’s Wireless Percussion Massager.
Boasting an impressive set of features, for an extremely competitive price, this product is a viable alternative and won’t break the bank.
In fact, in comparison to the top of the range Theragun device, it delivers over 10% more percussions per minute (PPM). This should provide more than enough power for your treatment, with plenty in reserve!
When it comes to the noise test, it’s significantly quieter than the Theragun, and you get a digital screen to experiment with your treatment which is a bonus.
While its 10mm stroke depth isn’t quite as deep as the 16mm stroke of a Theragun device, it outperforms on speed settings.
Its six different options (compared to two on the G3 Pro and G3 and only a single speed setting on the liv) give you more control over the intensity of your massage.
With PlayMakar’s gun massager you get the exact same number of attachments as Theragun’s Pro device but without the high price tag.
It can last a maximum of three hours when fully charged, meaning it performs for longer than all the Theragun models.
Of all the devices we’ve reviewed, it’s the lightest:
As the last thing you want after a tiring workout, is to lift another heavy weight!
Plus it’s made from a really tactile material and has an ergonomic handle that makes it easy to grip and control.
PlayMakar’s aim is to break down barriers and make pro tools available to the masses, yet they’re still a firm favorite with a number of professional athletes.
Unlike some other devices it doesn’t ship with a carrying case, however the cleverly designed box it arrives in, and lives in, means it stores away neatly.
If you’re really looking to take your training to the next level you may want to consider investing in a trio of performance and recovery-enhancing tools, with the full PlayMakar Game Ready Kit – click here to find out more.
2. Theragun vs Hypervolt Plus
Powerful massage with clever technology to improve your treatment
Another device with performance to rival Theragun is the Hypervolt Plus.
Delivering a whopping 1/3 more power (3,200ppm), with the same battery life as the G3 Pro, it’s a strong contender.
You have three different speed settings to help you handle the power, that’s more options than all of the devices in the Theragun range.
Of all the devices we looked at it’s the heaviest, though with so much power it could be worth the compromise.
One unique (and very handy) feature of the Hypervolt Plus is the built in pressure sensors on the device.
On the head you can see a visual representation of the pressure and distribution of your massage. By using the lights as your guide you’re able to make your treatment more accurate.
Incorporating Quiet Glide technology, it’s much quieter that its rival, so you can still enjoy an intense massage without the noise.
However, with a stroke depth of 13mm, it’s worth mentioning it doesn’t penetrate quite as deep in to the muscles as a Theragun device (16mm).
The Hypervolt ships with five attachments:
Each one has been carefully created to target different areas, with bullet, fork and flat shapes. That’s one more attachment than the Theragun G3 device, and one less than the G3 Pro.
Just like the Theragun devices it’s so easy to switch the attachments, helping you get more from your massage in the least amount of time.
Fans who owned the original (and massively successful) Hypervolt model, loved how with the new Plus they got all the same features but with extra power.
The only criticism appeared to be that it doesn’t ship with a carrying case, though you can buy one separately.
3. Theragun vs Tim Tam All New Power Massager
A simple gun massager that goes deeper in to the muscle
While Theragun devices go 16mm in to the muscle, Tim Tam’s All New Power Massager promises to go much deeper (10mm more to be precise).
At 26mm it powers deeper than any of the other devices we’ve reviewed, without comprising on power. In fact, it also offers marginally more percussions per minute than all the Theragun devices.
With such a great stroke depth you’d expect it to be heavy and loud:
But it weighs just 2.2lbs, making it easy to hold and control.
And is it loud?
Well, it clocks in at just 25dB, making it much quieter than a Theragun massager.
With a one touch trigger it’s really easy to use, so ideal for someone who doesn’t want to mess around with multiple settings.
Just by looking at this device, you can see that the focus is on simplicity. For example, unlike other devices it doesn’t ship with a range of different attachments.
You get only one speed setting too, but it is one Tim Tam feel is exactly the right setting for experiencing all the benefits of a percussion massage.
Plus it offers a 90° rotating arm for hard to reach places, a feature only offered on the top of the range Theragun device.
When it comes to battery power it doesn’t quite meet the battery life of the Theragun range, lasting just 40 minutes when fully charged.
But, the battery is swappable, so you could invest in an additional battery to guarantee you’ve always got some juice in reserve.
Owners of the Tim Tam massager loved the relief from pain they experienced, describing it as a true deep tissue massage.
They appreciated the fact that it ships with a carrying case to keep everything neat and tidy, as well as an international charger making it ideal for travel.
4. Theragun vs Vybe Percussion Massage Gun
An affordable (slightly noisy) option with lots of power!
If you’re looking to spend around $100-$150 on a percussion massage gun then Vybe is a solid substitute to a Theragun device.
The product manufacturers describe it as ‘not quiet, but powerful’, and it certainly is, delivering the same amount of power (and a similar amount of noise!) as the Theragun devices.
You do have more control over that power using the Vybe, with the ability to choose from six different speed settings.
It doesn’t offer as many attachments as the G3 or G3 Pro, yet you do still get three different massage tips (attachments) to choose from.
For such a low price you also get a rotating arm, normally a feature reserved for higher priced models.
This allows you to get more from the device as you can position it exactly where you need it, taking advantage of 90° degrees of rotation.
If you’re looking for a Theragun alternative and don’t want to compromise on stroke depth, then you’ve got nothing to lose with the Vybe.
It matches even the top of the range Theragun model on stroke depth, powering 16mm in to your muscles for maximum relief.
Like the G3 Pro, the Vybe percussion massager ships with two batteries. The batteries don’t last as long, but you do get a total of 120 minutes of battery life, which was hugely appreciated by the shoppers buying this massager.
Included in the cost is a smart case to store your device, which is ideal for carrying with you wherever you go.
There’s no doubt that Theragun products are of a superior quality and that’s reflected in the price.
However overwhelmingly reviewers of the product felt that the range of features and power provided made it real bang for the buck.
5. Theragun vs Sonic Handheld Percussion Massager
A percussion massager that just keeps on going…
Battery power is important, particularly if you’re looking for a device you can just throw in your bag for before or after a workout.
This Sonic Handheld Percussion Massager promises between three and six hours of battery life when fully charged, considerably more than the Theragun competitors.
It’s seriously good value for money, achieving more percussions per minute than all the Theragun models, for a much lower price.
At 12mm it falls short of the Theragun when it comes to stroke depth, though you can gently increase the intensity as you desire with five different speed settings.
Users commented on how easy it was to operate, with a simple light system displaying the selected option, and how much power you have left.
It’s described as ‘whisper quiet’, slightly quieter than even the entry level Theragun liv model.
And it has more attachments than the liv (and G3) model too:
In fact, you get five different attachments to choose from, including two different shaped bullet heads, helping you target joints and trigger points.
The Sonic Handheld Percussion Massager ships in a custom designed storage and travel case, which is a great added extra for such an affordable price.
Those reviewing the product were amazed at how quiet it was, describing it as easy to use and good value for money.
Most importantly though, they were impressed with how it helped to relieve aches and pains, and improve their range of motion.
Comparing Theragun Devices: G3PRO, G3 and liv models
Theragun has a great reputation in the industry, so if your heart is still set on purchasing one of their devices, we’ve compared them for you below:
1. Theragun G3PRO vs Theragun liv
Comparing Theragun’s top of the range device, with their entry level product, there are of course key differences.
The G3PRO offers an adjustable arm, more speed settings, two swappable batteries and five extra attachments. Though it is more than double the price of the Theragun liv model.
Plus the liv is smaller and lighter, which can be beneficial if you might struggle to handle a heavier device after a workout.
They can both power 16mm in to your muscles, however the G3PRO has 30lbs of extra force to really hit the mark.
This means that it can handle you applying 60lbs of pressure in to tough muscle tissue, without stalling.
For some people that could be too much power, so consider how you’ll use your massager and the features you really need before making an investment. Our buying guide below will help you with that.
2. Theragun G3 vs Theragun G3PRO
The most significant difference between these two devices is the fact that the Theragun G3PRO has an adjustable arm.
If you’re going to be using your massage gun regularly this can be a significant feature, as it offers you full body reach, making it easier to tackle tricky areas.
The G3PRO also wipes the floor with the G3 when it comes to battery life:
It comes with two swappable batteries, giving you a total of 150 minutes of battery life, avoiding the frustration of running out of power mid-massage.
Well, the G3 is smaller and lighter, and is the only model in the range that is available in two different colors.
In terms of the force delivered, the G3PRO can reach a maximum of 60lbs, compared to the G3’s 40lbs. It also ships with two extra attachments (Large Ball and Wedge).
Yet they both provide the same two speed settings and can make 16mm of impact in to your muscles.
3. Theragun liv vs Theragun G3
There are two major differences between the Theragun liv and G3 model, and that’s force and attachments.
Both can reach the same number of revolutions per minute, but the G3 model can deliver greater force up to a maximum of 40lbs, compared to 30lbs.
In terms of attachments, you get four different ones to choose from (Dampener, Standard Ball, Thumb and Core), whereas on the liv model you only get two (Dampener and Standard Ball).
The G3 also offers more speed options, longer battery life and a carrying case compared to the Theragun liv’s travel pouch.
The liv model is marginally lighter and nearly half the price, so take a look at our buying guide below to help you understand each of the features a little better before making your decision.
Features to Consider When Buying a Massage Gun
If you’re still struggling to make your decision, then take a look below at a breakdown of the different features of a massage gun.
Thinking about how you’ll use your massager and where, might help you work out which features are most important to you:
Prices range wildly so it’s worth setting a budget before you start shopping. You can get percussion massage guns for between $100 to $800, so be sure to shop around and read plenty of reviews before making your decision.
The weight of the device might not seem like an important feature, however if you’re holding it for a long period of time, you need to make sure it’s not too heavy. Also positioning a heavy massage gun when trying to treat hard to reach areas is more challenging. Typically percussion massage guns weigh under 3lbs, but it’s always worth checking before you make a purchase.
When looking at massagers, you’ll often see the Stroke mentioned, which is quoted in millimeters. This is the depth to which the massager will power in to your muscles.
This is the intensity at which the massage head hits your body, measured in percussions per minute (PPM). Different speed settings can be good if you’re looking to treat different areas of your body with varying intensities.
Percussions per minute (PPM)
This is how many thumps your body effectively takes in a minute! This number is in the thousands and gives you an indication of the power of the product. More percussions = more power. However be careful to look at the depth of the stroke, as a device with a shorter depth will naturally provide a higher PPM as it isn’t going as deep.
Shown in pounds, some manufacturers will promote the force of the product. This is the amount of pressure the device can take without stalling.
A number of massage guns have a rotating arm, which can be helpful depending on the area you want to treat.
All of the top percussion massage guns today will include a rechargeable battery. Take a look at the quoted battery power and think about whether it meets your needs.
Normally the noise level of the device is quoted in decibels (dB) to help you understand how noisy it will be. Consider where you’re going to use your device, if you want to use it in a busy gym then a noisy device might go unnoticed.
Devices normally ship with different attachments, carefully created to work on different areas. For example large ball heads for larger muscles groups or a pointed head to work on trigger points.
You might want to look at whether a carrying case is included in the cost. Some massagers ship with a case or a well-designed storage box that could work as one, whereas others sell them separately.