When it comes to health and wellness, we all know the things we should do. It's rare that you aren't told the keys to living the longest, healthiest life possible come from eating healthfully, exercising regularly, and getting plenty of restorative sleep.
Over the past decade plus, however, the evidence has mounted around adding a few things to that list, the top recommendation being massage.
The benefits of massage therapy are many, and we have it on authority that it decreases stress, increases circulation, and promotes, among other things, cardiovascular and immune health. With the technologically advanced society we now live in, it's easier than ever to ensure you get that dose of massage therapy daily with little to no hassle and at a very affordable price.
And you don't have to see a doctor or a physical or massage therapist to get it.
There are excellent, high quality home massagers available today that deliver professional-grade relaxation massage at home or on the go. Here are a few of the most highly rated and recommended models.
Top Rated Neck and Shoulder Massager
Brookstone Shiatsu Neck and Shoulder Massager
If you have tension in your neck or shoulders and you don't like using a handheld home massager, this is a superb choice for you. This is one of the best neck massagers out there, and the ease of use is hard to match.
We like the design a lot, as you just place it around your neck—it's like an airplane pillow, but longer, so it extends down the front of your shoulders—and turn it on.
It's easy to use whether you're sitting or standing, so it's an excellent way to get a penetrating Shiatsu massage while you're at home watching television, or working at your desk.
It's small enough to pack in your suitcase, so it travels well too. It has a built-in speed and intensity control, so you set your desired levels. It shuts itself off automatically after twenty minutes, so there's no safety risk if you fall asleep with it on.
This is the best neck massager machine that provides almost instant relief from sore or tight muscles. If relaxation tops your list of must-haves, you should check this one out.
Nekteck Shiatsu Deep Kneading Massager with Heat
If you are looking for a nice mix of features that you would get if you combined a massage chair with and a handheld massager, you will like the Shiatsu Deep Kneading Massage Pillow.
Like the Brookstone, this one also has a very low barrier to use. It's easy to throw on, whether you're sitting or standing, and it's highly versatile. It's great for home as well as the office, and it travels easily.
You can even use it in the car, which, if you have a long commute, is a huge bonus. It utilizes eight massage heads that deliver a deep Shiatsu massage.
It has built in heat, which you can turn on or off, which aids greatly in reducing tension in tight muscles and improving circulation. A standout feature for this class of massager is the direction and speed controls.
Many massagers in this category allow you to select the speed or intensity level you desire, but the added ability to adjust the direction, is something that more often comes with a chair.
We also like the flexibility. You can wear the massager not only around your neck and shoulders, but anywhere you have muscle soreness or tension—like your calves, legs, or back. It's hard to find a back massage pillow that you can use so easily and effectively on so many different parts of your body.
Trumedic Instashiatsu Plus Neck and Shoulder Massager
Like the Nekteck, the Trumedic massager has a heat setting that you can turn on or off, so this is a good choice if you have circulation problems.
We also like the design of the straps because at the bottom of each side there are loops for your wrists, so your arms can fully relax in a hanging position, taking the weight off your shoulder joints and tendons.
The massager targets your neck and shoulders, delivering deep tissue Shiatsu massage via layers of rotating heads. You can also change the direction of the rotation.
A big plus is that you can use the massager on other parts of your body, so it makes for an excellent back massager if you have pain, tightness, or stress in your lower back.
Yet another reason the heating feature comes in handy on this model. It comes with a rechargeable battery, so it's easy to take with you, and you never have to wait long for your next massage.
Naturalico Shiatsu Neck Massager
Two words: foot massage.
Neck and shoulder massagers are great, and when you can use them on other areas of your body to target muscle or joint pain, like the low back, we like them even more. But the Naturalico Shiatsu Massager gets high marks for its ability to target foot pain.
It's hard to beat the benefits a foot massager delivers when it comes to overall health and wellness.
There are more than 7,000 nerve endings in our feet, and the benefits of foot massage, or reflexology, are many.
You can adjust the intensity and add heat as needed or preferred to the deep tissue Shiatsu massage delivered via four rotating heads. The Naturalico is preferred for relieving tension and pain in tight muscles. The massage is applied in two different directions, which most closely resembles massage from a therapist.
New Five Star FS8801 Shiatsu Neck And Back Massager
If you're on a budget, and you want the best of both worlds between the Naturalico and the Trumedic, you're going to want to take a long hard look at the New Five Star.
You can also use this massager on your feet (as well as neck, shoulders, arms, and back), and you also get the convenient wrist loops to take pressure off your shoulder joints.
The massage is delivered through eight rollers, and the style is kneading. It too is multi-directional, which you can easily change in the click of a button, and there's an optional heat component you can turn on or off.
It travels well, you can use it in the car, and it shuts itself off after 15 minutes. This Five Star packs a lot of punch for the low price. You can purchase one on Amazon for just under 50 dollars.
Thera Cane Massager
If you want a manual option that delivers a highly effective therapeutic massage, you should put the Thera Cane on your list.
Nothing to plug in and no batteries to contend with, this device enables you to massage your entire body as deeply as you want.
The design is ergonomic and the placement of the massage balls makes it easy to target muscles and relieve tension and knots via trigger point massage, quickly and easily.
Check out this physical therapist's explanation and demonstration of the benefits of myofascial release and self-massage that you can get on your own with the Thera Cane.
Whether you want to go high or low tech, spend a fair bit of money or stick to a budget, there's a massager that's just right for you.
The beauty of the technology and advancements in massage delivery and design available today make it easy to select one that will give you the exact features you need to relieve stress and pain.
So, if you don't have the time or money to spend on a dedicated trip to a masseuse every week, or you just want the benefits of a massage while you're sitting in traffic or working late at the office, best neck massager and a portable head should be just what the doctor ordered.