best massage balls

Massage Ball: Test & Reviews

Author: Manuel Heitmann

Coach & Fitness Expert

With a massage ball, different areas of the body can be released of tensions. In order to be able to generate a list of the best, our team has viewed countless tests on the Internet and was able to include evaluations on diameter, material, weight and other special features.

Questions to Consider Before Buying A Massage Ball

What is a massage ball?

Massage balls are available in different sizes, shapes, colors and degrees of hardness. They can be made of rubber, plastic or plastic. The conventional shape of the massage ball is covered with knobs that protrude like small spikes and then enable the massage through their structure. The knobs are rounded or pointed and protrude in all directions. Some variants of massage balls are of a firmer, less flexible degree of hardness and material, others are softer or can be changed in size, e.g. B. through a needle valve from which the air is deflated. The degree of hardness in particular plays an important role for the massage and can be adapted to your own needs. The size of the massage balls is expressed in colors during manufacture. This is why the balls are so beautifully colorful, as one color always stands for a certain size standard.

The knobs or tips protruding in all directions are particularly effective in use, as they can be used to work on any point on the body. The round shape makes it possible to roll so that parts of the body can be reached that would otherwise be difficult to hit with your own hands. The massage ball can be used while sitting, standing and lying down and is rolled over the individual parts of the body during the massage. Of course, the partner massage with the use of the massage ball is also ideal.

The surface structure and shape of the massage ball was initially designed as a golf ball and developed in the 30s. Instead of dents, the ball had curved knobs to reduce the flight speed. Later, the ball turned out to be the ideal complement to the classic massage. For the massage ball, the material was of course changed again, the size varied and adapted to the needs of classic massage. The nub structure is either arranged in a certain way or combined with small elevations so that a double effect is created when rolling over the skin.

How does a massage ball work?

Before the massage ball is used, the right size should be selected. This plays a role for the body region where the massage ball is to be used. The soles of the feet or hands need smaller balls, the back, shoulders or legs need the larger models. The standard version is about the size of a tennis ball.

In addition to therapeutic measures, the massage ball is also used for relaxation or to warm up during sports. The ball is used on the floor or against a wall by leaning your back against it and rolling the ball over your back. In this way, hard-to-reach areas can be massaged and tension can be relieved without having to use a second person.

The shape of the ball makes it possible to massage many areas of the body, including the feet and the soles of the feet. The massage is applied in a targeted manner due to the different pressure that occurs when rolling over the points. Stimulating the reflex zones on the soles of the feet has a beneficial effect on the entire organism. The massage exerts pressure on certain points on the soles, which are known as reflex zones. Each zone is connected to a part of the body and reflects the effect on a specific organ, which is why naturopathy also speaks of the feet as a mirror image of the body.

The use of the massage ball differs depending on the purpose and ball: You can perform a back massage with a hedgehog ball on your own if you wedge the ball between your back and the floor or between your back and the wall. However, it is important that you take any restrictions such as spinal problems into account – especially if you want to use the massage ball in physiotherapy.

Organic problems and pain should be alleviated by a targeted pressure massage. In doing so, stimuli are exerted that are intended to influence and support the healing process in the respective parts of the body. This applies not only to physical complaints that are directly connected to organs or muscle tissue, but also to z. B. also sleep disorders or digestive problems.

In addition to the massage balls with knobs, which are also known as hedgehog balls, there are so-called trigger point balls, which have a uniform, slightly roughened surface. This deforms only minimally as soon as the ball is used. Leaning against a wall, on a hard surface or the floor, the massage is applied to the back, neck, hips, chest, shoulders and legs. The pressure on the muscle is then held for about five seconds, after which the muscle should relax.

All affected parts of the body are supplied with more blood and the tissue is loosened at the same time. This releases the tension and the symptoms disappear.

How to use a massage ball?

Massage balls can be deployed and used in a variety of ways. They are not only used to treat painful tension. Their application works in a variety of ways.

So is i.a. the metabolism is also stimulated and the blood circulation promoted. Both in turn have an impact on our general well-being and our psyche. Our basic mood is positively influenced. Because a massage with a massage or hedgehog ball is simply good and relaxing. Our body awareness is also trained and stimulated.
The various ways in which a massage ball can develop its potential will be briefly presented in the following. Training with the massage ball works in many ways:

  1. for muscle relaxation,
  2. to stimulate blood circulation,
  3. for releasing tension,
  4. to loosen sticky and hardened fascia,
  5. for the removal of waste products and waste products in the body,
  6. it improves the transport of muscle building materials to the muscles as well
  7. it leads to improved muscle regeneration.

But a massage ball also helps where the tissue and our thin skin is weak. If cellulite develops on the legs and buttocks, the resulting cellulite can be counteracted with the massage ball. Because orange peel and cellulite arise where the connective tissue of our skin loses tension and strength and is simply too weak.

Anyone who stimulates the affected areas with the massage ball stimulates cell generation and blood circulation and thus helps the skin and connective tissue to recover faster and gain strength.

A healthy diet, drinking plenty of water, exercise and sporting activities also have a positive effect on cellulite and cellulite.

Training with the massage ball provides additional support. Because skin that is regularly cared for with a massage benefits from better blood circulation. The skin becomes correspondingly more elastic and also firmer.

The massage ball is often used when specific skin nerves are to be targeted and stimulated. The massage ball is often used in physiotherapy.

In this context, nerves and muscles are sensitized with the help of the massage ball. This is done simply by rolling the massage ball over the appropriate skin regions; sometimes with more, sometimes with less pressure. In particular, the nerve tracts as well as the muscles are addressed, stimulated and excited.

Such an application is also used in the area of ​​reflex zone massage, which can also be performed very well alone. But more on that in another article.

With a reflex zone massage, the nerve stimuli of the respective sole of the foot are processed so that the organs connected to the zones are stimulated.

The massage ball is also suitable for our palms. Because our palms are also happy when they are stimulated and thus also sensitized.

But the possibilities of the massage ball don’t stop there. Because our whole body is permeated with nerves and muscles, which are happy when they are stimulated with a tingling massage experience from the massage ball.

Another possibility is to use a massage ball from the test comparison for a full body massage. This improves the entire skin structure and is also softer, firmer and more elastic.

With such a full-body massage, the ball is mainly rolled over the muscles. Without clothes or dressed … the effect is the same.

The possibilities of using a massage ball from the test comparison are only limited by your own fantasies. In principle, the massage ball from the test comparison can be used anywhere and anytime and small exercises can be easily integrated into the daily routine. Because tension is caused by long periods of sitting at the computer.

If the neck is stimulated for a few minutes with a massage ball from the test comparison, the tension dissolves faster and you feel more active to continue working while sitting. But stress and hectic pace also lead to tension (often of the whole body), so a massage with the ball has a calming and relaxing effect.

Why not, after a stressful day at work, treat yourself to a soothing self-massage with the hedgehog ball from the test comparison? It relaxes our muscles and mobilizes them at the same time. We also feel better and more relaxed, because a massage with a massage ball is simply beneficial. It strengthens our body. It strengthens our psyche.

Here, too, the possibilities of the massage ball from the test comparison do not stop there. Because it can also be used to train coordinative movement patterns and gripping exercises; also and especially after accidental injuries.

The hardness of the massage ball is important. Here, however, it depends above all on personal feelings about which degree of hardness is the best for you.

It is important that the selected massage ball from the test stimulates and massages the skin comfortably and that the knobs do not cause additional pain because they may be too hard.

If, on the other hand, pain is treated with a massage ball, then joking is such a thing. Because our muscles first have to get used to the massage with the tingling ball.

In addition, they are mostly still hardened, as are our fasciae … but loosening muscles and fasciae is the purpose of training and massage with the massage ball that we selected from the test.

If you massage and exercise regularly, you will soon notice that the tension is released and muscles and fasciae become more agile, flexible and relaxed again. This also helps in reducing stress. Another positive effect that an application with the massage ball has.

If you want to relax, you can use a combination of massage ball and fascia roll. If you combine both training devices with exercises for relaxation, you will stretch, relax and loosen the muscles even more. In this way, the elasticity and flexibility of the entire body is trained and improved.

In the best case, you can undergo an application with the massage ball and let a second person “roll over” the corresponding body parts, while the man or woman relaxes and surrenders to the tingling massage.

But the massage ball from the test comparison can also be used alone. Even areas such as the back and neck can be carried out on your own with the appropriate exercises; so i.a. when a wall or the floor is used.

Grasping exercises with the massage ball are always carried out alone. These train our finger and hand coordination and also stimulate the skin. Doc’s skin stimulation isn’t the only benefit. Our brain is also trained in grasping exercises. Because it controls the gripping ability and improves it with the training. This also trains our brain.

We see that the possibilities to use a massage ball from the test are almost unlimited. Have lots of fun with it!

Who should use a massage ball?

Massage balls, as presented in the test, are basically for everyone. Whether young, old, fat or thin – the massage with the ball from the test has its advantages for everyone.

The numerous fields of application and possible uses show that the massage ball is an excellent training, relaxation and fitness device for everyone.

The good thing about the massage balls is that you can learn to massage yourself quickly and easily with them, so that you can train, massage and stimulate yourself with the tingling balls … at least your muscles, nerves and connective tissue.

Massage balls from the test are of course particularly helpful and effective for those people who frequently suffer from tension in the neck and neck area such as back pain. Then the use of a massage ball for “self-therapy” is almost mandatory.

At least the treatment of tense muscles, fasciae and nerves with the massage ball is said to be more successful and lasting than an injection … and this type of treatment is also more natural.

Massage balls are also used by physiotherapists. Here they are primarily used to regenerate and train the sensitivity of injured body parts caused by accidents. By rolling the massage ball over the skin, skin nerves and muscles are targeted, stimulated and stimulated.

Especially people with nervous disorders benefit from a treatment with the massage ball, because the treatment has a large area on the corresponding stimuli … and once you know the exercises and areas of application of the physiotherapist, you can continue to do them yourself with your own massage ball at home. What is still missing? You can choose your own massage ball from the comparison test, order it and start massaging.

Athletes also often use massage balls. Because regular use and exercises with the massage balls stimulates the metabolism of the skin and muscles. This also helps the muscles to regenerate faster if they have been stressed and challenged by sport and activity.

The most common use of massage balls, however, is to release tension and adhesions in the fascia. Those who regularly use the massage ball, which one only has to choose and order using the test comparison, help to loosen muscles, nerves and fasciae. This also brings more mobility and agility again.

Everybody can use the massage ball … and it is so nice and small and handy that it fits in every pocket and in every place.

So you can treat yourself to a little relaxing massage during the break at work, like taking the massage ball with you on vacation so that you don’t neglect your regular training with it.

The massage ball is also welcome as a partner massage. Because you relax really well with a full body massage … during which of course you shouldn’t forget your feet and their reflex zones.

There are hardly any restrictions … but hardly any. because anyone who has complaints in the area of ​​the spine should urgently speak to their doctor and physiotherapist before using a massage ball. Maybe this knows alternatives?

When using the massage ball, it is also important that it is used correctly and effectively.

The massage ball fulfills other functions in a pleasantly tingling massage than when tensions in the neck or back area are actually to be relieved.

That is why it is sometimes advisable to go to a physiotherapist and treat yourself to therapy with the massage ball rather than using it yourself without instructions … or you can find out about the correct application elsewhere (like here).

Because if a massage ball, which can say more than just its name, is used correctly, it brings well-being, relaxation and numerous other benefits.

But in case of doubt for the accused, it is always important to speak to a treating doctor, who approves the treatment with the massage ball and perhaps has one or two professional tips and tricks on correct use in store.

Because it is better to be safe than sorry … even when treating and using the massage ball, from which you only have to choose the right and right model for yourself from the test.

Advantages & areas of application of massage balls

The massage with the massage ball is not only a measure against tension and pain. At the same time, it stimulates the metabolism and thus creates relaxation, which in turn affects the whole psyche. Your own constitution is positively influenced, body awareness is improved. Even with depression and anxiety, a massage can be extremely helpful and a good addition to the actual therapy.

Likewise, beauty problems such as cellulite are an area where the massage ball has a supportive effect. Cellulite and orange peel occur when the connective tissue in these areas is too weak. A lot of exercise, sporting activity and a good diet have a positive effect on the affected areas. The massage ball increases blood circulation because skin that is massaged regularly becomes firmer and more elastic.

The massage ball is mostly used to specifically stimulate various skin nerves. This then also happens in the field of physiotherapy. Certain muscles and nerves are sensitized here, which, by rolling over the skin, triggers a large-scale stimulus on the organism. The nerve tracts under the skin and the muscles are stimulated by varying the pressure, which can be lighter or more intense. This is particularly helpful with reflexology. The nerve stimuli on the soles of the feet are processed to have an effect on the organs connected to the respective zones. The palms of the hands can also be stimulated with the massage ball and thus sensitized.

Since the nervous system is stimulated and the blood circulation is promoted, the massage ball can stimulate the tissue nerves during a full body massage and improve the entire structure of the skin and make it softer. The ball is mainly moved and rolled along the muscle cords. This can be done both in Adam’s costume and through clothing.

The massage ball can basically be used anywhere and become part of the everyday routine. Tensions arise both from bad posture and from stress-related situations. Hustle and bustle, anger, tension – all of this can be the case at work and should then be resolved at the end of the day. Training with the massage ball is effective, as it not only relaxes the muscles, but also mobilizes them. As soon as the hectic conditions have subsided and the massage ensures well-being, the body is also strengthened again at the same time.

The massage ball can just as well be used for coordinative movement patterns and grasping exercises. The different degrees of hardness of the balls also have different effects on the body. The subjective feeling basically determines which massage ball is used.

It should massage the skin comfortably and not cause pain. Of course, this is only possible to a limited extent when treating pain with the massage ball, as the muscles first have to get used to the massage and are still very hardened, so that the pressure can also have unpleasant effects on the muscle tissue. Nevertheless, regular use soon leads to a solution of the hardening. At the same time stress is reduced, which also benefits the body.

A very good combination is also a hedgehog ball and a fascia roll. The combination of both in one exercise and relaxation technique improves the flexibility of the muscles and thus more flexibility and elasticity of the entire body. (You can find more information on this in our massage ball test under the point: “Massage ball and fascia roller: a perfect addition”.)


To use the massage ball, you do not need several people or a masseur who uses the ball. It can be used by a person for his own massage, B. leaning against a wall or lying down.

Grasping exercises, in turn, train the reaction of fingers and hands. This not only stimulates the skin, but also the brain, because it controls and thus improves skills. Grasping exercises can, for. B. be supplemented with memory training. The massage ball in hand is also an enrichment for switching off and for meditative exercise.

What types of dumbbells are available?

Hedgehog ball: Massage balls differ in size, color and shape.

The hedgehog ball, which is covered with pimples, gives a tingling feeling during the massage and thus loosens the tissue and at the same time promotes blood circulation. However, thanks to its slightly flexible shape, it can also be used for direct massage and work on and stimulate individual areas. The different sizes and degrees of hardness influence the massage and are also used in different parts of the body. The larger balls z. B. are used for the entire back massage, the smaller ones are very handy and can be used for gripping and relaxation exercises. The material is also different, so there are harder models made of plastic or silicone, and softer ones made of rubber. The round shape and the nubs make it easy to roll on the skin and can also sensitize it.

The massage ball has continuous knobs that are distributed in all directions and become narrower towards the top, and this shape distinguishes itself from other massage balls.

  • Orange balls: The color “orange” stands for a diameter of 6 centimeters.
  • Yellow balls: The color “yellow” means that the massage ball has a diameter of 8 centimeters.
  • Red balls: The color “red” indicates that the massage ball has a diameter of 9 centimeters.
  • Blue balls: The size of the blue balls is 10 centimeters in diameter.
  • Green balls: With this color, the size is over 10 centimeters, usually 12 to 15 centimeters on average.
  • Black balls: These balls are mostly of a larger format and can be 8 to 11 inches tall. They are used specifically for certain exercises and for balance training.

Of course there are also providers whose massage balls the color says nothing about the size, which are simply offered in a beautifully colorful set. Nevertheless, the color can provide information about the degree of hardness.

Stubble pimple ball: The pimples on a special pimple ball are all the same size, slightly wider than on the hedgehog ball and rounded. The arrangement is distributed over the ball in several equally laid out rows, the material of the pimple balls is usually harder and does not give in.

While the hedgehog ball is used more for relaxation and for direct use on parts of the body, also for grasping exercises with the hand or for reflexology on the feet, the nub ball is specially designed for the back, shoulders and leg muscles. Its hard structure massages these areas intensively.

Massage ball as a hemisphere: This massage ball is usually larger than the smaller massage balls in the shape of a hedgehog or pimple. The hemispherical format ensures that the ball is non-slip and can therefore also be used while standing, sitting or performing various movements.

Massage hemispheres are available in sizes from 10 to 30 centimeters. With them, balance can be trained or, in the case of children, better developed. Motor skills are improved through sport, games and fun. The hemisphere ball can also be used for foot massage, which is then done while sitting. The hemisphere always rests on the floor. The colors are mostly blue, green, red and yellow.

Massage roller: The massage roller is based on the same pimple principle as the massage ball. He has a handle, a device to which a small roller is attached, which in turn is covered with knobs all around. These can be rounded or pointed, depending on how the massage roller is used. The advantage of the handle is that it is easier to reach and stimulate the back. The massage roller can also be used for simple back scratching. It also activates the elasticity in the muscle cords and fasciae. The skin is supplied with more blood.

Trigger point ball: This type of massage ball has a uniform surface and a high degree of hardness, and is also heavier in weight. It is used specifically for trigger point massage and therapy and is therefore one of the devices that use pressure to reduce or deactivate the affected muscle areas. The trigger point ball can also be used for prophylaxis. The balls look like sports balls and, in addition to being used, also have a stylish design.

Cork massage ball: The cork ball, which is very light in weight and has a smooth surface, can also be used to edit trigger points. The contact surface is rather small and therefore enables the points to be reached precisely. With your own body weight, you can individually determine the pressure that is to be exerted on the tissue or muscle. Due to its material, the ball is relatively hard and unyielding and can be used excellently on the back, neck, shoulders, arms, chest, hips and buttocks.

Boon double ball: This massage ball consists of two balls that are connected by a stick like a dumbbell. It is a multi-tool for self-massage and for the direct treatment of trigger points. It has a smooth surface and the distance between the two balls can be adjusted. So it can be adapted to the body and the regions, which fixed double balls do not allow. The material is made of solid rubber and offers enough resistance to be able to massage with higher pressure. Since the balls are flexibly adjustable and also removable, the massage can take place with the double ball as well as with a single ball.

What do I have to look out for when buying a massage ball?

If you want to massage with a massage ball or want to use the ball as an accompanying element, you should choose a size that meets your needs.

The shape, whether with nubs or without, the material, whether rubber, silicone, plastic, cork or fabric cover, the degree of hardness, whether flexible and soft or hard should be considered before buying. It is beneficial to add a set that contains several balls and sizes, which can then be used depending on the request and pain treatment.

A simple massage ball can always be used for pure relaxation or to enable gripping exercises that serve meditative purposes. It remains important that muscle hardening can be treated with pinpoint accuracy, especially with harder massage balls.

If you want to edit trigger points in particular, you should choose balls with a smooth surface that are also slightly heavier in weight. Due to the degree of hardness, they can be used to exert particularly intense pressure and provide pain therapy.

Those who value relaxation during the massage can use hedgehog balls of different sizes. The one that lies comfortably in the hand is also ideal for other parts of the body. Particularly large massage balls, including whole or hemispherical balls that are over eight inches in diameter, are used to improve balance. They can be used both standing and lying down, and they also make gymnastics possible.

Massage Ball Alternatives

As an alternative to the massage ball, training tapes, therapy dough, cupping glasses, Qi Gong balls, vibrating bars, finger and hand trainers, dumbbells or cuffs can be used. Needle stimulation mats also have the same structure, which can then be moved on to initiate the massage. The fascia roll is just as effective and can also be used as an accompanying exercise device.

Frequently Asked Questions: Massage Balls

Which pain can be treated with the massage ball?

The massage ball can be used on almost all areas of the body. This primarily affects the regions of the neck, shoulders, throat, upper back, pelvis, stomach, legs, arms, hands and feet. The targeted processing of nodes and trigger points is particularly effective with the ball. Both smooth and structural balls, which have a different degree of hardness, can be used for this purpose. The tension is loosened by regular massage with the hedgehog ball and the tissue is loosened. The use of a massage ball is not advisable for spinal problems alone, as the exercises involve a whole movement of the body and the spine should not be pre-stressed.

What is the difference between soft and hard massage balls?

Depending on where the ball is used, the degree of hardness is decisive for the massage. Soft balls have a surface that gives way. They are ideal for grasping exercises where the ball has to be kneaded and pressed. Soft massage balls are especially suitable for beginners and people who are not too active in massage. They are just as useful for older people who are more sensitive and sensitive to the massage, but who are particularly dependent on it. The soft ball is used to loosen up the muscles, relieve slight tension, improve mobility and stimulate blood circulation.

The hard massage ball is good for intensive pressure massages and trigger point therapies. The intensity can be regulated here, but the surface of the ball hardly gives in and can be used in a targeted manner. These balls are particularly suitable for athletes and experienced people who are familiar with massages and techniques and often have to struggle with severe strains and tension. Massage has to be learned in a way.

Certain areas in the back should e.g. B. remain unaffected if this is processed with the massage ball. This is made even easier by boon balls or double massage balls, which are flexible in their spacing and then leave out the spots. In this way, stubborn tension can be loosened again.

Soft massage balls with a nub structure are better suited for simple relaxation.

How can the massage ball be used for relaxation?

A regular massage always leads to a relaxed sense of wellbeing and inner peace. This strengthens the body, the muscles remain supple and the performance improves.

The problem with all muscles, fasciae and layers of tissue is that it changes with age. Fibers, fascia, muscle cords shorten, tissue harden, the synovial fluid is reduced. This causes tension and ultimately pain. If you use the massage ball every day, you will prevent these aging processes and achieve lasting relaxation of body and mind. The background is always that with a healthy body, the mental condition is also improved, even if everyday or professional life is subject to heavy loads. Treating yourself to a massage and thus relaxing is a good alternative to a healthy diet and exercise. The massage can also be done wonderfully in pairs and sensitize and improve the togetherness. Here, give and take play a role in relaxation.

What is the Sciatic Nerve?

The sciatic nerve runs in the lumbar and cross plexus and is the most powerful nerve in the entire organism. It ensures that commands are passed on to the central nervous system via the spinal cord to the muscles of the leg and also for the transmission of sensations at this point. It is made up of many nerve roots that leave the spinal cord and exit through small openings on the side of the spine. There they interweave and form the nerve fiber network, the plexus, from which the sciatic nerve also emerges. If this is irritated or trapped, if it is under pressure or if it is inflamed, pain occurs, which mostly affects the leg, radiates over the buttocks and also reaches the foot, hikes up to the other and then causes back problems. Any movement then causes severe pain as soon as the nerve is pinched. Various exercises prevent or relieve this pain. It is important to lie comfortably on your back and bend your knees. The back is rolled over the massage ball on the floor, but only so far that there is no pain. The legs, knees and feet can also be massaged with the ball. It is important to roll evenly over the affected areas.

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