Massage Guns- Do They Work?

Massage Guns I Berwick Family Osteopathy

It seems as though massage guns have shot up in popularity in the past couple of years. We had a look into the evidence to see if they are effective. Also, can they cause us any harm?

The Verdict

A literature review in 2021 of 39 studies showed that massage guns CAN increase range of motion in the leg and ankle compared with foam rolling and self-massage. However, the effect is the same as conventional massage by a therapist. There was NO effect on muscle strength.
Another benefit shown in the review is that massage guns CAN reduce delayed onset muscle soreness, which is the normal muscle pain you feel for a couple days after a workout or intense activity.

Any Harmful Effects?

So far massage guns have shown to be safe to use although more evaluation is indicated. One case study has shown that a patient got rhabdomyolysis with ongoing use which is a serious disorder caused by muscle breakdown muscle death. This is extremely rare and shouldn’t be a concern if you use massage guns appropriately.


Overall if you want to increase your flexibility before exercise or decrease the muscle soreness after exercise then a massage gun could benefit you.

If you need more advice or if pain is holding you back, then get in contact with us Berwick Family Osteopathy on 9702 004 or check out our website at and make an appointment online.

We can’t wait to see you in the clinic and help you with your health.

Blog written by Dr Samuel Wilmann – Registered Osteopath.
Berwick Family Osteopathy & Spinal Clinic



Martin, J. (2021, January 20). A critical evaluation of percussion massage gun devices as a
rehabilitation tool focusing on lower limb mobility: A literature review.

Konrad A, Glashüttner C, Reiner MM, Bernsteiner D, Tilp M. The Acute Effects of a
Percussive Massage Treatment with a Hypervolt Device on Plantar Flexor Muscles' Range of
Motion and Performance. J Sports Sci Med. 2020;19(4):690-694. Published 2020 Nov 19.

Photo by on Unsplash

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