Massage Guns for Mountain Bikers
and other active humans
Percussion massage guns have gained popularity over the past couple of years and for good reason. After just a few minutes of use, they can temporarily relieve pain and soreness and increase blood flow to your achy muscles.
These massage guns are basically a sports recovery device that resembles your favorite power drill.
To help decrease muscle tension and release my always too tight IT bands and hamstrings from hours on the bike, I’ve been using a foam roller. I’d have to say I have a love/hate relationship with it. I find the foam roller cumbersome, awkward and uncomfortable, but it gets the job done.
However, since getting a massage gun, the foam roller sits idle for my new tool of choice. And I actually use it before and after a ride much more consistently.
We all know we need to do more self therapy to keep ourselves injury free and feeling great. Stretching and massage are at the top of the list. A massage gun can target specific areas of the body better than my foam roller and in just a few minutes.
It’s a bit overwhelming when you starting looking at all the different models available ranging in price for as little as $31 for the MINGZHEN mini to $399 for the Theragun Pro. But there are a few things you should look for when considering which one is right for you.
At the time of this article, both are listed on Amazon at $199. They both are rechargeable and have a nice carrying case with several attachments and at first glance, look about the same.
You’re going to be holding this for a few minutes and weight makes a different. You might have to do a bit of digging to find the actual weight on each product but it’s something you want to be aware of.
I weighed both devices on my kitchen scale and the Infinity was the clear winner coming in at only 1.15 lbs making it one of the lighter but still powerful massage guns on the market. The OPOVE comes in over a pound heavier at 2.5 lbs. It’s still manageable, and an average weight of these guns.
Impacts per minute
These two are very comparable with their speed range. The Infinity has 5 speeds ranging from 1,500-3,200 PPM. The OPOVE has 4 speeds from 2000-3300 PPM.
Massage gun amplitude
The massage gun amplitude refers to the depth the massage head can touch or how deep it can get into those problematic areas and give you that deep-tissue massage experience. The range seems to be from 12mm-16mm. The higher the number, the deeper the massage gun can go to work, particularly on really problematic parts of the body.
Between the two that I have, the OPOVE M3 Pro Max wins with 15mm amplitude. The Infinity is at the low end at 12mm. Do I notice a difference? The short answer is yes. I did several side by side tests and I did notice a bit more power with the OPOVE, but would you notice if the the difference was only 1mm difference? Probably not.
Both the Infinity and the OPOVE come with a Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery that works up to 4 hours of use per full charge. Both have their power switch and charging ports on the bottom.
The Infinity wins in this category. is easier to use since the level setting it on the front on the device like a trigger button, allowing you to switch setting with one hand. To adjust the OPOVE, the setting is on the back display screen so you’ll need two hands to adjust it.
Massage guns make noise, and some are louder than others. The two that I have sound about the same to me. The working decibels is 45dB -63dB on both and if you apply pressure, the decibels will increase.
Still not sure which one to get? For a point of reference, the ever popular and pricy ($399) king of the guns the Theragun Pro has five speeds ranging from 1,750 PPM- 2,400 PPM and weights 2.9 lbs and a amplitude of 16mm. In my opinion, either of these models work just as well for half the price. I do like the lighter weight and control trigger of the Infinity, but prefer the slight power advantage of the OPOVE.
Will these make you faster on the climbs? Probably not, but both will relieve sore muscles so you can keep on pedaling.
See ya on the trails!