The best massage tools: release the tension after workouts with the most efficient foam rollers and more

From sports injuries to aches and pains; tackle those sore spots quickly and effectively with these home tools

Whether you suffer from a long-standing sports injury or have joint issues that flare up in the cold weather, a simple massage tool may be all it takes to ease the pain and loosen up those muscles. 

We’ve compiled a list of weird and wonderful-looking massage tools that may look more like torture devices, but we promise they will work wonders on those little niggles that you just can’t seem to shake. 

Most of the tools are relatively small and easily portable for use at home, in the office, or on the go. Some work as a deep tissue massage and others target pressure points to relieve stress and tension (talking about that kind of stuff, check out our guide to the best face masks).

Most massage equipment comes in the form of a roller or a ball which can be pressed against the affected area to smooth out any knots, but for a more intense massage there are a number of electronic massage tools on the market that are great for a professional back, neck and shoulder massage. 

The best massage tools to buy today

1. Trigger Point GRID Foam Roller

A foam roller for stretching out the feet and legs after a workout

Best for: Gym-goers
Type: Foam Roller
Designed for: Legs
Reasons to buy
+Soft tissue massage+Portable
Reasons to avoid
-Exercises can be tricky 

This is one of the best massage tools for athletes and avid gym-goers. It’s recommended by physical therapists and coaches for avoiding sports injuries, so If you’re a cardio fiend but always forget to stretch, then the Trigger Point GRID Foam Roller is an essential piece of equipment that will ensure you don’t damage your muscles.  It fits in most gym bags nicely, so there’s no excuse not to use it. 

2. Thera Cane

A massage stick that gets to those hard-to-reach areas

Best for: Doctor’s Choice
Type: Massage Stick
Designed for: Hard to reach areas
Reasons to buy
+Deep tissue massage+Targets all areas
Reasons to avoid
-Tricky to use correctly 

Some may think that £25.00 for a stick is a waste of money, but as a doctor’s recommendation, this is one of the best massage tools for back and neck pain. This handy (albeit, strange-looking) tool is guaranteed to get to those hard to reach pressure points and smooth out any knots. It looks fairly intuitive but there is a knack to pinpointing particular problem areas, all of which are outlined in the instruction manual.  

3. Rock Tape Rock Balls

Maintain happy feet after every run with these massage balls

Best for: Runners
Type: Massage balls
Designed for: Legs & Feet
Reasons to buy
+Compact & Lightweight+Cheap
Reasons to avoid
-Spikes can be painful 

If you have flat feet or suffer from plantar fasciitis, then these massage balls will do wonders in reducing any pain caused when running. They’re small and can easily be kept in your gym bag or car so that you can eliminate any heel or arch pain after your workout or run.  

4. Anself Back Roller Massager

Release any neck and back tension while on your travels with this roller massager

Best for: Travellers
Type: Massage ball
Designed for: Back & shoulders
Reasons to buy
+Travel friendly+Cheap
Reasons to avoid
-Can’t reach smaller areas 

No one sleeps well when they’re not in their own bed. If you frequently travel or even go on camping trips where there is no bed at all, you can say goodbye to a bad back or stiff neck with this portable roller massager. This is a really cheap item that can significantly improve blood circulation in those areas under pressure, with results just as good as if you’d had a professional massage.  

5. Escape Massage Ball

A small massage ball for those pesky pressure points

Best for: Stress & tension
Type: Massage ball
Designed for: Neck, Shoulders, Back
Reasons to buy
+Professional massage quality+Finds hard-to-reach areas
Reasons to avoid
- A little pricey 

We know £20.00 for something resembling a tennis ball may seem far-fetched, but this is one of the best massage tools for neck tension on the market. It mirrors the pressure of a thumb for the most relaxing home massage that really releases stress and tension. This can be used anywhere on the body but is recommended for targeting neck and shoulder tension.  

6. Powerlead Shiatsu Kneading Neck Massager

A powerful electric massager that feels like a real-life massager

Best for: Relaxation
Type: Massage Cushion
Designed for: Neck & Shoulders
Reasons to buy
+Variety of settings+Hands-free 
Reasons to avoid
-Not for sports or injury 

Want all the benefits of a real massage but don’t like the idea of a stranger touching you? Then invest in the Powerlead Shiatsu Kneading Neck Massager for a truly relaxing salon-quality massage whenever you want. This is less of a sports massage tool and more of a relaxing at home in front of the TV style massager, but its heated action works well to relax muscles.  

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