Percussive massagers (also referred to as “massage guns”) have grown increasingly popular. Massages haves been used for fitness recovery for ages, and now fitness enthusiasts have the opportunity to take recovery into their own hands (quite, literally).
Massage guns range in both price and quality, with units starting at $100 and going up to $600+. At Fitness Clone, we’ve been on a quest to find the perfect massage gun.
Today, we are going to review the ReAthlete DEEP4s massage gun.
ReAthlete is a relatively new company on the scene. The company has quickly been established as a leader in the massage recovery space.
The company offers two core products: the DEEP4s percussive massager and the Air-C + Heat. Our review will focus on the DEEP4S massager.
ReAthlete DEEP4S Massager
When I first started my search for the perfect massage gun, I was overwhelmed. I was familiar with companies like Theragun and Hypervolt, but I felt that their products were a bit expensive. Spending $400-$600 on a recovery device is no cheap investment.
I continued my search on Amazon where I discovered that there were dozens of “knock-off” brands offering massage guns at much cheaper prices. I found unbranded units ranging from $150-$300. Of course, “cheaper” isn’t always cheaper if you end up buying a subpar product.
As I began to look into other options, I came across the ReAthlete DEEP4s, a product that seemed to be a great value.
I decided to test it out and have been using the product actively for the past couple of weeks. Let’s take a closer look at some of the features.
There are a few key features to consider when buying a massage gun. If you skimp in any of these categories, you may find yourself in possession of a subpar product that doesn’t actually do what you want it to. Let’s see how the ReAthlete ranked.
The first thing I focus on when testing a new product is quality. Nothing else really matters if the product won’t stand the test of time. You can instantly tell if a product is made cheaply simply by holding it.
For example, the cheap knock-off massage guns on Amazon are clearly built using lower quality materials. Conversely, Theragun’s high-end massage gun is built from high quality materials.
The ReAthlete DEEP4s is well-built. As mentioned above, I’ve tested devices on both ends of the spectrum and the DEEP4s feels sturdy and durable. In fact, I found the build to be comparable to the Theragun G3PRO which is more than double the price.
When I first started researching massage guns, I was shocked at how expensive they were. Prior to my research, the only experience I had with massage devices was with those handheld massagers you find in stores like Brookstone and Sharper Image.
The reason massage guns are much pricier is because they are way more powerful. The percussive motor is far more powerful than a handheld massager that simply vibrates. Of course, not all massage guns pack the same power.
I’ve noticed first-hand the cost of using a massage gun that lacks power. You won’t be able to get the deep tissue massage you seek.
So, how did ReAthlete rank in this category?
Once again, the ReAthlete DEEP4s excelled. This massage gun is incredibly powerful, offering speeds between 1200-3200RPM (which we will discuss in detail later).
You can feel the power of this massage gun. It is able to get deep into the tissue and give you a powerful massage.
The next category I judged the ReAthlete DEEP4s on was the amplitude/depth of the percussive head. Basically, this is the length of each stroke the massager makes.
16mm seems to be the baseline in this industry. TimTam, a competing massager, promotes a 32mm depth.
Initially, I was surprised to see that ReAthlete only had a 12mm depth. Based on my research, I was led to believe that a longer stroke length was better.
I was wrong.
I felt more power from the 12mm DEEP4s massage than I did from competing 16mm massagers. I have to assume, at one point, the extra depth doesn’t really matter (although the Reathlete massage gun is far more powerful than the truMedic massage gun which has a 10mm depth).
Many are shocked by the power of a massage gun the first time they use them. In fact, these devices can be too powerful for some. Accordingly, speed control is a much needed feature.
The ReAthlete DEEP4s has four convenient speed settings. I generally use the highest setting but find that the lower settings are great for certain muscle groups and/or areas of soreness.
The ReAthlete DEEP4s has a maximum battery life of eight hours per charge. If you use the max setting, the battery will last about three hours.
This is more than enough to use the device for 1-2 weeks at a time without recharging. I generally wouldn’t use the device for more than 10-20 minutes/day, so I don’t have to recharge too often.
Recharging to completion generally takes about 90 minutes.
With great power comes great volume.
The first percussive massagers I tried were LOUD. You wouldn’t be able to use these devices when people were sleeping, watching TV, or enjoying some other activity where they wouldn’t want to be interrupted by the sound of a power drill.
The ReAthlete DEEP4s is surprisingly quiet. It is much quieter than the Theragun I had previously tested.
I can use it while watching TV without being disruptive.
The DEEP4s massager comes with 5 interchangeable heads:
- Large Ball
- Medium Ball
I use the medium ball 90% of the time but I’m also a fan of the other heads. The fork is good for massaging around the neck and spine, the flat head is good for putting some more pressure on certain muscle groups, and the bullet is good for zoning in on a small area.
Last but not least, a good percussion massager should be adjustable. I didn’t realize how important this was until I tried reaching parts of my back with a non-adjustable massage gun.
Fortunately, the ReAthlete DEEP4s massager has three adjustable positions. For the most part, I keep the massage gun in the main position, but I will adjust it when using it to massage my own back.
Benefits of the DEEP4s Massage Gun
Massage guns have a lot of scientifically proven benefits. I’m not going to go too deep into the science but I will explain the main ways I use the massage gun and how I benefit from it.
The main reason I use the DEEP4s massage gun is to speed up muscle recovery time. I really put this device to the test.
I use the massage gun for about 5 minutes after a heavy lifting session. I’ve used it after deadlifting, squatting, running, you name it. It makes a world of difference.
You shouldn’t expect to completely eliminate your recovery period, however you can shorten your recovery time and decrease muscle soreness.
Increasing Blood Flow
The second reason I use the ReAthlete massage gun is slightly less common but beneficial nonetheless. This device can be used to increase blood flow.
In fact, I started incorporating it into my morning routine. A quick full-body massage to get the blood flowing and I’m ready to go.
I will also use it after sitting too long or right before a workout.
ReAthlete DEEP4s Price and Value
The ReAthlete DEEP4s sells for $299.99. This is way cheaper than the Theragun G3 PRO which retails at $599 and the Hypervolt Plus which retails at $399.
I think ReAthlete found the sweet spot for pricing and quality. At $300, the DEEP4s is well worth it.
Comparison to Alternatives
I’ve used a handful of the leading percussive massagers and the ReAthlete DEEP4s is my favorite for two reasons.
First off, it is well-priced. At $300, the device is much cheaper than other leading brands. It is slightly more expensive than some of the unbranded massagers you will find on Amazon, but the quality is WAY higher.
Second, the DEEP4s has all of the features I need. The speed is there, the power is there, and the customization is there. Cheaper brands will often sacrifice crucial features in order to keep costs down; ReAthlete did not.
Final Thoughts on the DEEP4S Massage Gun
If you are looking for the best percussive massage gun, I can confidently say that the ReAthlete DEEP4s is one of your best bets. If you are comfortable spending $300 on a recovery device, this is one of the best options. I started incorporating the DEEP4s into my recovery routine and never looked back.