When’s the last time you had a really good calf massage? It’s probably been a while. After all, getting proper treatment means you need to book a massage therapist appointment at the spa, travel, and then pay them on top of everything else. Seems like a lot of work in today’s fast-moving world.
Well, good news for the money and time-poor: you don’t need to do that anymore.
Foot and calf massage technology has grown leaps and bounds in recent years. Alongside the increasingly impressive array of foot massagers, a new category has emerged.
Foot and calf massager machines are quickly becoming the choice for consumers who want a more far-reaching treatment for relaxation, better blood flow, or to help alleviate certain common medical issues.
If you’re thinking about getting into the calf, leg or foot massager game you’ll soon see that there are more options than you might have expected to choose from. Well, not to worry, because we’ve done the hard work for you and put them all in this list! Ready? Let’s go.
Before you buy
Foot and calf massagers are fairly simple in practice, but they do have different feature-sets, prices and quality levels. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you start your research:
There are a few different types of calf and leg massager machines out there, with their own special functions and focuses. However, there are two broad types: Sleeve and full-unit. Sleeves are the most popular type because of how easily they can be transported in a bag or case. Sometimes, they might not treat the entire leg but they are a lot more lightweight and adjustable. A good example of this would be the CINCOM Leg Massager (which features on this list.)
Full-unit calf massagers may be a little more difficult to move around, but are far from being a pain to transport. They are still designed to be as portable as possible but can deliver a stronger massage for those who need a little more power. They also cover the entire leg and deliver a great-all round massager for those looking to spend a little more. Also look out for special treatment focuses, such as options for plantar fasciitis, shiatsu massage or adjustable tilt.
Quality and Durability
Like with all other consumer electronics, you’re going to want to pick up a product that’s well-made and won’t let you down after just a few months. Generally speaking (but not the rule), the sleeve designs can be a little less durable than the full-units. This is purely because they are designed with more flexible and lightweight material.
To make sure you’re getting a good unit, do your research, read reviews and find out what the warranty situation is.
Comfort is crucial when it comes to choosing your leg and calf massager. If it doesn’t fit you properly, you won’t be able to enjoy the full benefits of the treatment. Of course most of us won’t know the actual size of our calves, legs and feet, but you can easily find this out with a tape measure.
As long as you have a ballpark measurement for your leg-size, you’ll be able to choose the right massage machine. Many can service a variety of sizes and can be adjusted, so pick one that has a lot of leeway. Remember, if you’re looking for a foot and calf massage function, you’ll need to factor in your foot size as well.
Ease of use
Foot, leg and calf massagers offer a lot of options, but some of them might be over complicated for those looking for a simple solution. After all, when it’s time for you to relax, you’re not going to want to be bombarded by complex settings.
When choosing your massage machine, try to get one that comes with a remote control for easier operation, or comes with an LCD screen (such as the Magic Maker Foot and Leg Massager) to show you what settings you’re on and how long is left in the treatment. Finally, make sure to find out about the battery’s lasting power as you want a product that needs constant charging.
If you have a leg or calf massager machine in mind, make sure to hunt around for as many user reviews as you can find. These are a great, unbiased way to get the real impressions of people just like you and might answer some questions you didn’t see in the product description. If you’re having trouble finding any reviews at all, we recommend going with another product entirely, just to be safe.
Last but not least, it all comes down to money. You’ll probably have some idea of what you’re willing to spend before you start your research, but be prepared to pay a little more if you see something great. For instance, those that offer shiatsu massage are likely to cost more than machines that don’t.
Remember, these are technical machines with (advertised) medical benefits so you’re not going to want to pay too little for an inferior option. If you look at the overall benefits, you’ll realise that they aren’t actually too expensive and if the difference between a better battery or quality of material is small, it’ll be worth it in the long run.
Product Review Summary
To kick our reviews off, here’s a handy, quick guide to 6 of the best percussion massagers.
|Name and link||Type||Price range||Best for||One line review|
|RENPHO compression leg massager||Full-unit compression massage||Mid||Home, office and casual use||Best function to price ratio with six modes, and covers the entire leg. Our top pick.|
|FIT KING massager for circulation and relaxation||Feet and calves, compression||Low||Beginners and first-time users||Our all-rounder with many different massage options and entry-level pricing|
|Magic Maker Foot and Leg Massager||Full-unit compression and heating||Mid||Users looking for more power||Lots of massage options, including heating and a focus on strong compression.|
|Amzdeal Leg Massager for Circulation||Calf wrap, heating and compression||Low||Focusing on calves and arms||This calf massager has advanced heating materials and compression. Portable and affordable.|
|CINCOM Leg Massager||Calf wrap, compression||Low||Portability and ease of use||Lightweight and high-quality, wraps around the calves of your feet with seven different massage techniques.|
|Human Touch Reflex SOL Foot and Calf Massager||Feet and calves||High||Serious massage and circulation for feet and calves||Designed by experienced engineers, premium quality, high price and packed with features.|
Our top pick: RENPHO compression leg massager
This is the real deal
RENPHO has established themselves as a leading manufacturer of foot massage devices, but their leg massager is every bit the market leader as their other products. Wrapping around your feet, calves, lower legs and thighs, this massage-marvel offers a complete treatment that does well to promote good blood flow while relieving muscle tension.
Stay in complete control with a handheld controller that lets you choose from 6 modes and 4 massage Intensities for you to enjoy the treatment your way. You can even detach the thigh and calf wraps from each other for separate use, giving you the option to massage only one of those areas. As a bonus, the thigh wraps can be used for your arms. Combine all of these with good build quality and materials that last and you’ve got the best leg massager on the market today.
- Leg massage with complete cover, including foot massage and calf muscles
- Choose which areas to massage with detachable modules
- Four intensity levels and six massage modes
- High quality materials and durability
- Adjustable for many different foot sizes
Our all-rounder: FIT KING massager for circulation and relaxation
Cover all your bases
With so many foot and calf massagers to choose from, sometimes it’s easier to pick an all-rounder that hits the right balance between price, quality and functionality. After a good look around, we’ve picked the FIT KING as it ticks all the boxes in equal measure and is the perfect choice for someone who wants to look past all the fluff and get a professional massage that’s the safest choice.
The FIT KING strengths lie in the range of treatments you can have for massaging your feet and calves through the use of airbags inside that inflate and deflate according to the selected program. With two modes, three intensities and ten different ways to massage, you really can’t do better as a first-time or casual user.
- Two massage modes and three air compression massage intensities with ten different techniques for foot and calf muscles
- 2+2 airbags inside provide robust foot and calf massage
- 20 Minutes automatically shut-off functions for safety
- Larger and adjustable wide wrap size with 2 free extensions for different sizes
For a serious squeeze
Some leg and calf massagers are stronger than others, and if you’re looking for something to give your legs a harder compression, we recommend the Magic Maker. Made of sturdy silicone, polyester and nylon, this device offers three modes, including foot shiatsu massage, calf kneading and foot air compression massage delivered by 3+3 big airbags in the leg and foot segments.
What sets this apart from some other options is that you can also apply heat treatment alongside the air compression, further helping to relax the muscles and increase blood flow.. Throw in a three-year warranty and LCD remote control and you’ve got yourself a good package that has punch.
- Deep tissue treatment with powerful air compression massage programs with six speeds
- Heating function for additional treatment
- Controller with LCD display
- Larger and adjustable wide wrap size with 2 free extensions for different sizes
Our hot pick: Amzdeal Leg Massager for Circulation
Turn up the heat
This Amzdeal massage machine makes our list as another standout option for shoppers looking for high quality engineering at a decent price. In fact, this is one of the cheaper options in our list but don’t be fooled by the price. This is a strong performer due to the emphasis on using heat as part of the treatment which the makers claim helps with pain relief, tension, fatigue, plantar fasciitis and muscle pain.
The device uses a high-quality heating cotton fabric to allow for balanced, stable and fast heating options, together with the choice between three intensity levels of compression pressure and vibration. One thing to bear in mind is that this is primarily a calf massager only and won’t cover the feet and legs at the same time. However, the manufacturers say that you can apply them to your arms and tired feet, with similar effects and relief. If you’re looking for a calf massager with focus, this is the one.
- Two heating modes, two massage modes and three air compression pressure levels for leg and calf muscles
- Quality heat therapy cotton to obtain quick and stable heating
- The calf massager can fit most people for different pressure points
- Adjust leg wraps size via the velcro and make it fit perfectly on your calves, arms or feet.
Our lightweight pick: CINCOM Leg Massager
Take it everywhere
Leg and calf massagers bring a lot of benefits, but they can be quite…large. Sometimes, you might just prefer something quick, easy and portable to pack into your suitcase or backpack. Well, if it’s portability you want, then the CINCOM is for you.
Made up of two wraps and weighing just 2.31 pounds the CINCOM offers a reasonably good range of features despite its size. The CINCOM has two modes and three air compression intensity levels, with a ‘whole-calf’ mode that inflates and deflates both wraps simultaneously, before moving up and down each calf in three-second intervals. We also like how the device comes lined with a velvety polyester, resulting in a non-irritating and soft feeling against the skin. This feels like a very professional massage.
- 2+2 big airbags for strong treatment for calf muscles
- Two calf massage modes, three air compression intensity settings
- Deep kneading technology
- 20 minutes auto shut-off
- The leg wraps can be adjusted via velcro, suitable for most sizes
- Mesh storage bag. Easy to use at home, in the office or during travel
Our premium pick: Human Touch Reflex SOL Foot and Calf Massager
For when money is no object
While some people may be casual or beginner users, others will prefer the very best; they need fantastic engineering, great design and plenty of powerful massage options. The Human Touch massager delivers on all of these and more.
With a wellness pedigree that goes all the way back to 1979, Human Touch are well-known for providing advanced therapy devices to sports enthusiasts, medical user, massage lovers and owners of tired feet. The device has a patented figure-eight massaging action that the makers claim promotes better blood flow, detoxifies the feet and calves, and may help with plantar fasciitis. It also offers heat and vibration settings along with three auto-massage programs and two intensity levels. Another great design choice by Human Touch is that unlike other foot and calf massagers, you can adjust the height to get the best possible treatment that feels like a professional massage.
- Uses advanced, patented figure-eight pattern with massage rollers to soothe, relive and relax
- Delivers a powerful reflexology massage for feet and calves
- Foot massage is more of a focus on this device
- Extended height allows maximum body coverage
- Side rolling feature for enhanced body wrap-up.
- Adjustable tilt angle for maximum comfort.
Can I use a leg and calf massager for exercise recovery?
The short answer to this, is yes! A major benefit from leg massagers is that they improve muscle relaxation and improve circulation after running, jogging or other exercise. While they may not help reduce the overall time of recovery, they will certainly help with keeping your muscles well-circulated, warm and at less risk of cramping.
How long should I use a foot, leg or calf massager
This all depends on the level of treatment you’re looking for. Many devices will have a number of presets and guides to choose from. While there is generally no maximum time, the rule of thumb is that you wouldn’t need more than 30 minutes. Please ensure to not have a high intensity for too long of a time to reduce your chances of muscle damage.
How to use it for the first time
Foot and calf massagers aren’t particularly difficult to operate, but please make sure to read the manual to ensure that you can operate it safely. Once you remove it from the packaging, give it a quick clean and wipe before placing onto your legs and getting comfortable with the correct tightness and pressure points.
Start things off gradually with a low intensity so that you get a good idea of how hard it’ll work your muscles without hitting them too hard or suddenly. It’s also recommended to have a shorter session for your first time, not longer than 10-15 minutes so that you can get fully acclimated for longer sessions if necessary.
How do I care for my massager
Just like other electronics, the way you treat your foot and calf massager will determine how long it’ll last for. Luckily, caring for your device is super easy and straightforward. As well as the usual things (don’t drop it, pack it away carefully etc), make sure to keep it unplugged when not in use (or charging) and out of direct sunlight or extreme temperatures.
Are there any risks?
For normal people without any specific medical conditions, leg and calf massagers pose little or no risk. However, if you are prone to forming blood clots, are pregnant, have heart conditions or have historical leg injuries please talk to your doctor to get the all-clear. Do not use the massager before doing so.
The bottom line
Now that you’ve seen our favorites, it’s time to decide which one edges out the competition. All of the massagers on our list were picked based on their price, function, quality and reviews. So, which one was our favourite? Well, it was a tough choice but we’re going to go with the RENPHO compression leg massager because it covers all the basics and quite a bit more. For the price, you can’t do any better. Honourable mentions also go to our all-rounder, the FIT KING and our premium pick, the Human Touch.
So there you go, the best leg and calf massagers out there today. Remember to read up on reviews and check with medical professionals if you have a pre-existing condition. Otherwise, you’re good to go! Enjoy.