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Theragun Vs Thumper : Handheld Massager Battle

If you are looking for a great handheld percussion massager then you will definitely not go wrong with choosing either the Theragun or Thumper.

Both are great massagers, but if you are wondering which one would be the best for you, then you have landed on the right page!

Because in this comparative review, I am going to take a close look at the massagers so that you can make a better-informed decision.

As you might already know both companies have several models, but I will focus on the two popular ones:

Theragun G3Pro (NEW) and Thumper Mini Pro.

I am going to present this comparitive review in the following format:

  • Short summarizing comparison table
  • Presentation of each product
  • The product comparison (the Theragun vs Thumper part)

Comparison Table

Name
Pricing Pros Cons
Theragun G3Pro $$$
  • Portable
  • Versatile
  • Battery convenience
  • Pricy
Thumper Mini Pro $
  • Affordable
  • Self-massage mid/lower back
  • Power cord
  • Only one type massage head

For more options that can compare to the expensive Theragun massager, you can check out these 4 G3Pro alternatives, or you can have a look at my thorough review of the Pure Wave CM7.

Increase In Popularity and Old Vs New

Lightweight and handheld percussion massagers have seen an extreme rise in popularity in the past years.

Since massage devices are nothing new, perhaps the rise in popularity has something to do with the fact that there is an increasing variety of massagers available that actually work well.

An interesting thing to take note of is that the Theragun is one of the most recent massagers that have had big commercial success and arguably have had a role in the increase in popularity.

A bunch of athletes and celebrities have been seen using the Theragun, and if you are interested in that sort thing you can read more about it here.

On the other hand, the company behind the Thumper designed and patented its first massager back in 1974. Obviously they have made design improvements since then.

Of course, there is also scientific evidence that shows both percussion and vibration massage therapy works, which are exactly what these massagers do.

Theragun G3Pro: New Massager On The Block

After suffering from a motorcycle accident that caused a disc herniation, the founder (who is both a chiropractor and athlete) spent 8 years developing the Theragun with the purpose to create a less expensive, more efficient and accessible product than its competitors.

Since 2014 the Theragun has been used by professional teams and top athletes over the whole world. The G3Pro is the third iteration with more power and less noise than its predeseccor.

The G3Pro is truly a professional-grade handheld massager made with professionals in mind but usable by anyone. You can use it on yourself.

It is powered by powerful batteries and because of its portability, it is probably especially good for people who are often moving around and have with active lifestyles.

But anyone who suffers from aches and pains due to the modern lifestyle can bring it to good use.

It has the two different speed options of either 1750 or 2400 RPMs which according to the founder is the optimal speeds for muscle recovery.

The massaging arm can be adjusted in a 90 degrees angle making the thing easy to navigate and hit all the spots.

Included in the purchase is:

  • six different changeable “massage heads” so you can customize the massage
  • 2 changeable batteries each with a reported battery life of 75 minutes of continuous use

The G3Pro comes with 1-year warranty and to see it in action, click the video below I found on Theragun’s Instagram profile.

Thumper Mini Pro: Not Just For Pros

The Thumper Mini Pro is the company’s solution for both professionals and non-professionals. It is intended for use at home or at the office.

While it does have a relatively small and light design, its main selling point is not portability and it is operated with a power cord.

It is designed to be used with either one or two hands and because of its long shaft, it is ideal for reaching areas like shoulders and mid-back by yourself.

Like the Theragun G3Pro it is great for people with active lifestyles that need to speed up muscle recovery or treat aches and pains.

The Thumper Mini Pro has two massage spheres/massage heads that operate simultaneously at three different adjustable speeds: 1200, 1800 and 2400 RPM.

It comes with a 2-year warranty.

Check out the Thumper Mini Pro in this super short video

Thumper Maxi Pro

The Maxi Pro is much larger massager than the two others mentioned above.

It is intended to be used by professionals and is not for home-use / self-treatment. You will probably face some issues if you try to use it outisde of a “normal” therapy setting.

Because of that, it is definitely not for everyone.

It has 8 massage spheres /heads that can operate at speeds between 1080 and 2100 RPM and their positions can be adjusted in 4 different ways to customize the massage.

Because of its large surface area, a full body massage can according to the company be achieved in 5-8 minutes.

It is a sturdy and relative heavy machine and its weight itself will help work the muscles. Its design can be traced all the way back to 1974.

The Maxi Pro comes with 2-year warranty and you can check it out on Amazon here.

Theragun And Thumper Features And Specs – Comparison

As I mentioned in the introduction, you will be getting a great massager whether you choose Theragun or Thumper.

The main differences between the products are the 1) price and the 2) portability.

The Theragun is the significantly more expensive option, however it unlike the Thumper cordless and the size is also more compact.

The Theragun batteries are very powerful and should last you 75 minutes, the recharge time is relatively fast and two batteries are included.

In other words, it is not a great sacrifice that is being made in order to go cordless.

Another thing worth mentioning is that the jigsaw / gun-looking design of the G3Pro could be considered a newer handheld massager generation than the Thumper.

For a more systematic and easy-to-navigate comparison, I am going to cover the following aspects of each product below:

  • Massaging “power” and versatility
  • The design
  • Price difference
could dogs use a theragun or thumper massager?
Need a massage? With a handheld massager you don’t have to beg or pay by the hour.

1. Massaging “Power” and Versatility

The Theragun G3Pro has 2 speeds: 1750 and 2400 RPM. With a stroke length of 0.6″ / 16 mm, the distance traveled with each revolution is relatively long and it packs A LOT of power.

The Thumper Mini Pro operates at three different speeds 1200, 1800 and 2400 and unlike the Theragun has two massing heads operating simultaneously.

The two massage heads move up and down 0.25″ / 6 mm each and also packs a lot of power but probably not as much as the Theragun.

The G3Pro should be able to withstand up to 60 lbs / 27 kg of pressure. I could not find any information regarding the Mini Pro, but according to several customers the more recent Mini Pro model that came out 2-3 years ago is not as strong as its predecessor.

Theragun G3ProThumper Mini Pro
Massaging head
operating
12
Speed (RPM)1750 and 24001200, 1800,
2400
Amplitude0.6″ / 16 mm0.25″ / 6 mm
Versatilityadjust 90 degree,
6 massage heads
Self-treating upper
and mid back possible
PoweredBattery (75 minutes)Power cord

With the possibility to adjust the massaging head 90 degrees and using 6 different changeable heads, the Theragun is the more versatile option.

Since it has a compact size and is battery powered, it is also easier to navigate around on your body.

The Thumper Mini Pro does have a benefit of its larger size though, and that is you can massage upper and mid back by yourself easily using either 1 or 2 hands holding it.

2. The Design

The massagers are both relatively lightweight but have a study design.

I have mentioned before that the G3Pro is more compact, but as you can see in the table below it is not a big difference. However, having the cord attached is another factor that makes the Mini Pro less compact.


Theragun G3ProThumper Mini Pro
Weight2.9 lbs / 1.3 kg3 lbs / 1.4 kg
Dimensions
L x W x H
(approx.)
10.1″ x 8″ x 2.7″ /
25.7 cm x 20.5 cm x 6.8 cm
13″ x 6″ x 5.5″ /
33 cm x 15 cm x 14 cm

When comparing the visual design, the Theragun is the winner in my opinion. It does look more modern and cool.

The Theragun also comes with a handy carrying case.

3. Price Difference: Justified?

The Theragun G3Pro is the significantly more expensive option and I think it is fair to say that you should thoroughly consider your specific needs and if they justify spending the money.

With that being said, the Theragun does include a lot more, it is newer, more powerful and is battery-powered.

A thing to take note of is that the Mini Pro comes with 2-year warranty while the G3Pro only has 1-year warranty.

Making The Decision

If you are often on-the-go and want to take the massager with you and feel it is worth spending more money, then the G3Pro won’t disappoint you.

If you just want to use the massager at home and don’t care about the different massage options that the changeable massage heads have to offer, then Mini Pro should be more than enough for you.

Besides, you will be able to massage your back by yourself easily, which I think is what most people really want.

Waiting for someone else to massage your back is arguably one of the major reasons you want to get a massager in the first place.

Marcus

Hello there! My name is Marcus, I am a lawyer (LL.M.) and the founder of this website. Besides sometimes doing lawyer stuff, I like to write about fitness and health and share with others what I have personally found “works” (others have as well). I like weight training, yoga and figuring out how to overcome the many challenges caused by our modern lifestyle. If you want to know more about me and my vision for this website then you can click here.

2 Comments

  1. I would think the difference in stroke length 6 mm vs 16 mm is the most significant difference but what difference does this make to your actual massage experience? If not much, then it is hard to see why the extra expense of a massage gun is justified.

    • Yes, the difference in stroke length is significant. While there is much more to the massage experience than stroke length, you can be sure that the G3Pro is the most powerful option here. Whether that is good or not depends on what you are looking for, a more powerful massage might work better and faster for thicker tissue like neck/upper back and thighs, but probably won’t for the lower back.

      Also, don’t think that stroke length necessarily means a higher price and have in mind that the speed (RPM) is also a relevant metric. Finally, the massage guns tend to be more expensive because they are battery powered. They have a powerful motor which requires powerful batteries.

      I really appreciate your input, as I am very interested in knowing what other people think about these devices. I hope my answer can help you, and please let me know if there is something else.

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