During my collegiate years, as a dance major, I used a roller of some sort on every muscle of my body. I’ve gone through foam rollers, spike balls, and wooden foot rollers for many years. While I respect each of those tools, I prefer devices that offer a massage without requiring a large amount of manual effort from me. So when Therabody offered me the opportunity to try its Wave Duo ($99) vibrating massager, I was curious to find out if this smooth yet rugged contraption — which resembles two connected lacrosse balls — would alleviate my muscle aches without causing me to sweat while giving myself a massage.
At seven inches tall, the Wave Duo is a portable, Bluetooth-enabled massager with a silicone outer layer. It also has wavy ridges that run over the entire exterior of the device. Therabody’s Wave Duo comes with a soft drawstring travel pouch and a USB-A to USB-C charger, too. The device has five vibration settings that can be manually adjusted, by pressing the center button, or controlled using the free-to-use Therabody app. To connect the device to the app, I pressed the center button to turn on the Wave Duo, then followed the prompts in the app until the screen told me the Wave Duo was connected.
Using the Wave Duo With and Without the Therabody App
The Therabody app is equipped with dozens of guided routines for different types of workout recovery, warmups, and daily needs — like helping with sleep. Within each routine, I found that I could customize how my phone cued me to change sides (vibrations versus sound) and how long I wanted the breaks between sides to be (from one to 15 seconds). I opted for a sound cue with a four-second break between sides.
Giving a few of the routines a try, I realized that I was able to easily follow along with the instructional illustrations. Each illustration was of a person that showed me how to place my body onto the device. Every time a new side was cued in the app, the illustration changed with it. Out of all the routines I tested, the “Shin Splints” routine (under the “Ailment” category) was my favorite. I tried the routine after taking a two-hour dance class and woke up the next morning without my usual aches, so I swiftly put the “Shin Splints” routine under the “Saved” category within the app on my phone so I can quickly access it next time I want to use it.
Without the app, the Wave Duo was still easy to use and effective at getting into my tense muscles. I could massage my neck, shoulders, upper back, low back, shins, calves, and feet easily by playing around with the vibration levels — to figure out what level worked for each of my body parts. For me, I mostly used level three on more sensitive areas (like my shins and neck) and level five on my tighter muscles (especially my quads and lower back). Underneath the arches of my feet, I turned off the vibration and found that the ridges in the Wave Duo still gave me a great massage. Proving itself as an effective massager from neck to toe, this compact rechargeable Wave Duo massager is going right in my gym bag.