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LAST UPDATED: 24 Mar 2022

Best Massage Stick

Staying Alive - Buying Guide

Muscle roller sticks are long, cylindrical tools designed to provide a deep tissue massage. 

The massage roller stick is applied to fatigued muscles and rolled back and forth across the affected area until the tightness fades away. 

Inexpensive, lightweight, and portable – they are the ideal travel stick, perfect for all types of athletes and fitness enthusiasts or people suffering from tight muscles.

We’ve rounded up the best massage sticks, allowing you to select your preferred self-massage tool.

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This article was written by Staying Alive Crew Published at 04:22 pm

The Best Massage Sticks

  • The TriggerPoint STK Handheld Massage Stick helps with muscle pain, knots, and trigger points via self-massage.

    The device has several different self-massage heads for various purposes.

    The Trigger Point STK Massage Stick is designed with textured rubberized touchpoints that offer enhanced grip and tension, relieving massage therapy on the contact points of the body.

    Made with a mid-density foam it provides the perfect amount of massage pressure for all-over muscle aches and pains.

    For added durability, this handheld massage stick is made with a steel core that’s wrapped in EVA foam.

    With high-quality materials, roll your aches and pains away.

    Key Features
    • AcuGRIP surface
    • medium-density surface
    • Ergonomic handles
    • Handheld muscle roller
    • Metalcore
    • EVA foam
    • Latex-free
    • Brand: TriggerPoint
    • Model: TriggerPoint STK Handheld Massage Stick
    • Specifications: ‎18 x 2 x 1.5 inches
    • Compact & travel-friendly size
    • Slim, ergonomic handles
    • Perfect for massaging lower & upper body muscle groups
    • Available in 5 variations (contour flexible, extra-firm, regular-firm, travel size)
    • Some users may find it difficult to pinpoint specific treatment spots
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  • The Physix Gear Sport Muscle Roller Stick is a self-myofascial release tool that reduces muscle tension increases range of motion for increased performance and speeds up recovery.

    The Physix Gear Sport Muscle Roller Stick is great for use on your calves, hamstrings, quads, hip flexors, chest, back, and shoulders.

    Equipped with a stainless steel core rod, different types of spindles are made from premium thermoplastic, and molded anti-slip rubber handles for easy use. 

    Get Your Swagger Back with Physix Gear Pro Muscle Roller Sticks!

    Key Features
    • Muscle Roller Pro
    • Stainless steel core rod
    • 7 Premium thermoplastic spindles
    • Ergonomic handles
    • 4 colors
    • Silent floating roller technology
    • Brand: Physix Gear
    • Model: Physix Gear Sport Muscle Roller Stick
    • Specifications: 17.4 x 1.9 x 1.9 inches
    • Enhance flexibility, circulation, muscle growth, repair & sleep improvement
    • 7 independent rolling spindles
    • Portable, fits most gym bags
    • Budget-friendly
    • Ideal for athletes, fitness enthusiasts & active individuals
    • Pulls hair, so users may want to avoid rolling without wearing clothing
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  • The Elite Muscle Roller Stick is simple yet effective. It has 2 different size options, 16 or 18 inches, to suit your needs.

    It provides a vigorous deep muscle massage which can relieve discomfort and reduce muscle tightness.

    It’s extremely lightweight and portable. You can fit it easily in your gym bag or suitcase, so you can use it at home or on the go.  

    This incredible tool provides 9 trigger point rollers that help you reach every muscle in your body. 

    Made of reinforced plastic, it helps you get the perfect massage every single time, and its non-slip handles allow for a comfortable grip. 

    Looking for a way to relieve muscle tightness, stress, tension, aches, and pains? The Elite Muscle Roller Stick will definitely do the trick.

    Key Features
    • Available in 2 sizes (16 or 18 inches)
    • 5 colors
    • 9 trigger point rollers
    • Snag-proof design
    • Non-slip handles
    • Comes with an instructional video
    • Reinforced plastic & soft rubber
    • Brand: Elite Sportz
    • Model: Elite Muscle Roller Stick
    • Specifications: 18 x 1.4 x 1.4 inches
    • Easily fits into your gym bag
    • Perfect for on-the-go fitness
    • Reduces muscle soreness, recover faster, & does not flex
    • Excellent for improving mobility & flexibility
    • Comes with an instructional video on how to use the muscle roller
    • Rollers turn independently
    • It may not be for users who are looking for foam for the rolling part
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  • The IDSON Muscle Roller Stick is a unique 9-roller massage stick that features a convex point style and an ergonomically designed handgrip at a great price. 

    Constructed with ABS independent rollers with a stainless steel core, this unique tool is made of high-density plastic to ensure durability and longevity. 

    The 9 roller points offer different sensations, allow for a deeper massage without being harsh on the skin.

    The composition allows individuals to target specific areas while also providing a more general massage; it's easy to hold and use anywhere on your body.

    Key Features
    • Unique 9 roller design
    • Ergonomic & convex point style
    • Thermoplastic rubber
    • Polypropylene handles
    • ABS independent rollers on steel rod core
    • Brand: IDSON
    • Model: IDSON Muscle Roller Stick
    • Specifications: 18 x 2.2 x 1.8 inches
    • Great for targeted muscle relief
    • Ergonomic, ensures comfortable grip & anti-skid
    • Ideal travel stick to take to the gym
    • Recommended by physical & massage therapists & personnel trainers
    • It may not be long enough to massage your own upper back/shoulders
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  • The SKLZ Muscle Roller Stick is a professional-grade roller stick that was designed for athletes looking to target deep muscle tissue post-workout.  

    It has a textured surface that provides a deeper massage than most other massage sticks.  

    An adjustable ball bearing system allows you to apply more or less pressure depending on your preference. 

    The rigid core gives it stability and makes it easy to hold, while the mountain-bike-inspired grip provides comfort and a non-slip grip on the muscle roller stick. 

    Prepare your muscles for physical activity with the SKLZ Muscle Roller Stick.

    Key Features
    • Unique ball bearing system design
    • Mountain-bike inspired grip
    • Grooved rollers
    • Rigid core, solid bar
    • Brand: SKLZ
    • Model: SKLZ Muscle Roller Stick
    • Specifications: ‎19.5 x 2 x 1 inches
    • Mountain bike-inspired grip for more comfort and ease of use
    • Helps increase muscle oxygenation, flexibility & stimulate active muscle recovery
    • Offers optimal pressure distribution
    • Smoother skin contact
    • Ideal for those on a budget
    • Not ideal for shin rolling, too firm
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  • The Stick Massage Stick is a massaging device that makes it easy to massage any part of the body, including the back, neck, legs, feet, and arms.

    Made from high-quality plastic, it contains firm nodules that are great for applying pressure to tight muscles. 

    The stick also has an ergonomic grip making it easy to hold and control while applying pressure.

    The Stick is composed of 8 independently rotating spindles, each with its own ball bearing, allowing it to move in a rolling motion. Providing a deep kneading sensation while targeting well-known trigger points.

    The Stick has a standard level of flexibility, which makes it easy to use on any muscle. 

    Accelerate muscle recovery with The Stick Massage Stick. 

    Key Features
    • 8 colors
    • Core bends
    • 8 rotating spindles that roll independently
    • Standard flexibility
    • Plastic
    • Brand: The Stick
    • Model: The Stick Massage Stick
    • Specifications: 17 x 1 x 1 inches
    • Flexible core bends
    • 8 rotating spindles, roll independently
    • Helps improve strength, flexibility & endurance
    • Different models with varying flexibility to handle different types of physique
    • Maybe too firm to use on the neck
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  • The Supremus Sports Muscle Roller Massage Stick is an excellent way to massage your muscle soreness in the comfort of your home. 

    It can help to relieve stress and fatigue while increasing blood circulation in your muscles, allowing them to heal faster and stay relaxed. 

    Rollers turn independently allowing users to hit even those hard-to-reach spots. 

    Ergonomically designed with non-slip handles, makes it easy to use in every position. 

    The textured plastic roller, will not tear or damage clothing while also offering a deep tissue massage to increase flexibility in your muscles.

    Key Features
    • Non-slipping handles
    • 2mm gap between each roller
    • Rollers turn independently
    • Rigid stick
    • Textured plastic
    • Brand: Supremus Sports
    • Model: Supremus Sports Muscle Roller Massage Stick
    • Specifications: 17.5 x 1.5 x 1.5 inches
    • Restores & rehabilitates sore, tight muscles, releases tension
    • Increases blood circulation & improves mobility & flexibility
    • Compact
    • 100% money-back guarantee within 30 days of purchase
    • Competitively priced
    • The 2mm gap between each roller prevents hair from being pulled
    • Can make a mild squeaking sound
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  • The Original Tiger Tail Massager is a great investment for athletes and active people, helping to ease pain and sore muscles.

    With larger bumps on one side and smoother bumps on the other, it can be used for both soft tissue massage and trigger point therapy. 

    It comes in 3 different lengths, 11, 18, or 22-inch, and has a diameter of almost 2 inches. 

    Made from durable closed-cell foam provides even pressure distribution. 

    With a firm, non-flexible design and handles with an ergonomic grip, you’ll turn muscle soreness into happy muscles in no time.

    Key Features
    • Massage roller stick
    • Cushioned cover
    • Available in 3 sizes
    • Even pressure distribution
    • Ergonomic grip
    • Firm, non-flexible design
    • Made in the USA
    • Medical grade, closed-cell, non-absorbing foam
    • Latex-free
    • Brand: Tiger Tail
    • Model: Original Tiger Tail Massage Stick
    • Specifications: 18 x 1.5 x 1.5 inches
    • Non-slip grip reduces fingers/hand fatigue
    • Cushioned center portion spins smoothly
    • 3 lengths: 11, 18, or 22-inch length
    • The firm design doesn't bend or flex
    • Ideal for relieving muscle knots, soreness, & decreasing recovery time
    • Lightweight & portable
    • Maybe too firm for some users
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  • The Kamileo Muscle Roller is an excellent self-massage tool to alleviate back pain, improve flexibility and circulation, and speed up recovery from workouts.

    Sporting high-quality materials, including a sturdy stainless steel axle core and durable ABS raw materials, ensures durability.

    Rollers roll independently, allowing easy maneuverability and a deep muscle massage. While thermoplastic rubber anti-slip handles provide a steady grip. 

    The Kamileo Muscle Roller has everything an athlete or fitness enthusiast needs to recover faster after rigorous workouts.

    Key Features
    • ABS raw materials
    • Stainless steel axle core
    • Thermoplastic rubber anti-slip mat handles
    • Roller part: plastic
    • Rollers, roll independently
    • Brand: Kamileo
    • Model: Kamileo Muscle Roller
    • Specifications: 17.7 x 2 x 2 inches
    • Ideal for pre & post-workout, to accelerate muscle recovery & disperse effects of lactic acid & pain relief
    • No bending, no breaking
    • No squeaking
    • No snagging on body hair
    • Comes with an instruction pamphlet
    • Maybe too firm for some users
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Massage Sticks Buying Guide

There’s a wide selection of massage sticks available on the market today and choosing the right one for your needs can be difficult. 

Selecting the right roller stick can make all the difference in relieving pain and tightness in larger muscle groups. 

Massage Stick

Massage sticks – also referred to as muscle roller sticks or massage roller sticks, or muscle rollers - are a type of sports massager. 

Whether you’re a regular at the gym, or someone who sits behind a desk all day long, rolling your stiff shoulders, legs and back might seem futile. 

The massage stick can be used on any part of your body; you just need to find the right location that feels good. 

A massage stick is a great alternative to massage rollers.

Benefits of a Massage Stick

Myofascial Release

A myofascial release is a form of soft tissue therapy that is used to eliminate myofascial trigger points and is increasingly being used in sports recovery.

It’s been shown to provide effective treatments while simultaneously providing relaxation, increased range of motion, a reduction in spasms, and post-therapy residual limb pain.

Massage sticks mimic myofascial release by physically applying sustained pressure to the myofascial. Making them ideal to use without the risk of over-stimulation.

Deep Tissue Massage

Deep-tissue massages can provide many benefits from relieving stress to alleviating chronic pain that stems from large muscle groups.

They are a great way to relax, unwind at the end of a long day, and you can tailor the massage intensity.

When you target deep muscle tissue it helps with stiffness, soreness, knots, tendinitis, and arthritis.

Blood Flow

The physical activity of using a massage stick improves blood and oxygen circulation. 

Blood flow brings blood and oxygen to all parts of the body, thus preventing health problems like fatigue and blood depletion. 

Because blood and oxygen flow increases, the whole body benefits from this.

Physical therapy

A massage roller is a physical therapy tool that offers targeted relief to tense muscles and can be used at home or on the go.

People who suffer from muscle tension or, shin splints, aid their workout recovery with a massage stick.

Trigger Point Therapy

A trigger point is an area within the skeletal muscle tissue that is tender to the touch and can trigger a painful response when direct pressure is applied. 

A muscle roller stick helps you locate these trigger points as well as release muscle tension that has accumulated in those muscles.

Relieve Pain

A muscle roller stick is used to help reduce muscle pain and tension, whether it’s acute or chronic pain. 

Using the muscle roller on a specific area of the body will help to relax the muscles, joints, and tissues to gain the maximum benefit of muscle pain relief.

Stretching and Workout Recovery

Muscle rollers work by releasing muscle adhesions that may have formed as a result of muscle overuse or trauma. 

The muscle roller can be used on a muscle group before and after exercise, during rest periods between sets, and/or before and after the massage, for maximum benefit.

Muscle roller sticks can help stretch muscle tissue after an intense exercise session which helps muscle fibers repair and heals. 

Stretching muscle tissue during muscle repair is very important since muscle cell activity is increased by as much as 15% after an intense workout session.

Features for the Best Massage Stick


There are 2 parts to a massage stick: the long handle for easy gripping of the stick, and the rolling part where you apply pressure to relieve tension. 

There are many different hard plastic materials used in making massage sticks, including ABS plastic and nylon plastic.  

ABS plastic is a durable plastic that is lightweight and is made to be impact-resistant so it won’t break during normal use.  

ABS plastic can cause irritation to the skin, especially if contact occurs over prolonged periods of time. 

Nylon plastic is used in some massage sticks because it has a smooth texture that does not irritate the skin like other plastic options.  

There are various metal tube types used in massage sticks, including aluminum and brass.  

Aluminum is a very soft but durable metal that can be manufactured into many different shapes and sizes.  Whilst being lightweight it’s not as strong as other metals such as a steel rod core.  

Which massage stick you select depends on your preferences and comfort. 

Textured vs. Smooth Surface

Many massage roller sticks have a textured surface for traction, while others are smooth and feature a hollow design to keep the stick light.

The textured surface will allow you to provide deep pressure while maintaining comfort for your hands and arms.

Alternatively, if you are looking for something less intense, then opt for a smooth surface massage roller. 


The general length of a massage stick is about 17 inches. Many people purchase a variety of different-sized sticks instead of just 1 model. 

This allows them to choose the correct size massage roller based on the muscle group that needs to be massaged.

If you want to travel and put your massage stick in your gym bag, you may want to opt for a length that is travel-friendly. 


Massage sticks have anti-slip handles on either end that make it easier to apply pressure wherever needed and achieve a wide range of motion.

Some sticks have stationary handles with rotating heads or bars that roll independently in one direction or both directions. 

Take your time to determine whether you want a stationary handle and independent rotating spindles.

Massage Intensity

You can modify how much intensity you apply to sore muscles, via the massage stick's rotating head or bars that can roll in the same or opposing directions. 

If you’re a fan of intense massages, you may want to consider a massage stick with a textured surface.


The price of a massage stick is affordable, many massage sticks are less than $20, and sticks at the more premium end are around $30.

For something that has so many health benefits, it’s a steal!

Massage Sticks FAQ

Do massage sticks work?

The use of massage tools is to help reach and massage areas on your body, such as the back, shoulders, and neck more easily.

Simple in design, massage sticks provide a multitude of benefits like relieving muscle soreness and are excellent for self-myofascial release. 

Many massage sticks are super portable, making them an excellent travel stick, to put in your gym bag to use after your workout.

How do you use a body massage stick?

Massage sticks consist of 2 parts: the main shaft for hands-free maneuvering, and the removable head which has different textures designed for massaging muscles or releasing pressure points.

The more you roll muscle rollers around, the more it digs into skin cells releasing tension in muscles. 

The stick helps soreness and removes toxins by pushing them out of the skin through sweat or oil that's secreted through the pores.

If you experience any pain during the technique, stop immediately and consult a medical professional. 

Muscle roller sticks vs. foam rollers

A muscle roller stick is typically smaller than a handheld foam roller. How much pressure is applied depends on how much your press down on the stick, when rolling over various areas of the body. 

Muscle roller sticks are better for targeting specific areas than foam rollers and you can move around your joints with ease, so you won't have any trouble hitting deeper muscles.

Conversely, a foam roller is larger and requires you to use your body weight to apply pressure as you sit, lay, etc. on the roller.

There are certain parts of your muscles where it can be difficult to reach with a foam roller. 

On top of that, when using foam rollers, you'll need to apply more pressure in order to reach those specific areas, which can cause discomfort to the muscle.

While a foam roller definitely has its perks and can be a solid choice when looking for a massage tool, there is no question that a muscle roller stick is an excellent option to loosen tight muscles. 

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