I tried this budget-friendly heated massage gun on my sore muscles – 5 things that surprised me

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun.
(Image credit: Future)

Massage guns are seriously the bee's knees. These handheld percussive devices let you massage sore muscles, at home, with little effort, and whenever you want. The best massage guns can aid your training recovery or simply help you relax after a long day on your feet or working your body. 

The Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice massage gun is a relatively new, budget-friendly model that comes with lots of goodies and promises performance on par with higher-end brands. However, what piqued my interest is the included heated/cooled attachment head. 

With a lower back sore from less than stellar posture at my computer and legs aching from lots of recent bike rides and hikes, I've been able to put the Bob and Brad C2 Pro through its paces over the last week. With a focus on the Heat and Ice attachment in particular, here are five things that surprised me most about this heated/chilled massage gun kit.

The Heat and Ice massage head isn't a gimmick

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun head

(Image credit: Future)

The Heat and Ice attachment is what sets this massage gun kit apart from others, but is it more than just a gimmick? Yes. 

The removable massage gun head charges separately from the C2 Pro gun via the same USB-C cable. Charging takes roughly 120 minutes, though mine came almost completely juiced up. The run time for the head, regardless of whether you use the hot or cold setting is about one hour, though, like the gun, it will shut off automatically after ten minutes of continuous use. 

The attachment has two buttons, one for hot and one for cold. A long press on either turns it on, while a short press jumps between two level settings. For hot, yellow is the low heat setting and red is high heat. On chill mode, green is low, blue is high. 

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun on a wooden table

(Image credit: Future)

You'll be hard-pressed to feel much heat or chill through clothing, even a light t-shirt. However, on bare skin, the coldest setting gets respectably chilly but the hottest could be hotter.

Does maximum heat feel nice? Sure, especially on the soles of my feet, hip flexors and lower back, I just wish I could crank it up twofold. 

Regardless of which setting you choose, the head changes temperature in just a few seconds, which is impressive. The fan on cold mode, by the way, is a bit noisy. However, you can't hear it over the sound of the C2 Pro running at its higher speeds.

The C2 Pro is affordably priced and often on sale

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun in its storage case

(Image credit: Future)

Ordinarily priced at $109, the Bob and Brad C2 Pro is frequently on sale via Amazon and can easily be picked up for under $100. 

That makes it a bargain compared to similar devices from popular brands like Theragun and Hyperice. For example, the Theragun Pro Plus has a heat feature but starts at $599. 

Hyperice, on the other hand, offers a heated head attachment for $59 compatible with the $129 Hypervolt Go 2, the brand's most affordable massage gun. However, neither of these options offers a cooling feature. 

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun: $89 @ Amazon

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun: $89 @ Amazon (with coupon)
With 10mm amplitude, five percussive speeds, and an included attachment that gets hot and cold, the Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice is a capable and feature-packed massage gun kit for the price. You also get four additional attachments and a handy carrying case, while the gun itself is well-constructed, reasonably quiet and ergonomically friendly.

The long, grippy handle is great for hard-to-reach spots

Person holding the Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun

(Image credit: Future)

The Bob and Brad C2 Pro has the best reach of any massage gun I've tested recently, including the Theragun Mini and Bob and Brad Q2 Mini. Though to be fair, both are travel massage guns. 

Thanks to a long four-and-a-half-inch handle coated in silicone to make it extra grippy, I can easily reach and work the knots in my upper and lower back. This means I no longer need to rope my significant other in for the task, something I'm sure she'll appreciate. 

The C2 Pro is also nicely-weighted and sits quite comfortably in my hand. At 1.5 pounds, it isn't terribly heavy, thanks in part to its mostly plastic construction. Plastic aside, it feels well-built though may not survive being dropped from more than a few feet. 

Lots of accessories come bundled

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun and accessories on a table

(Image credit: Future)

In addition to the heat and ice attachment, the C2 Pro comes with a foam ball head — which I used second most — a rubber air cushion head, a plastic bullet head and a plastic U-shaped head. 

Everything comes nicely packed in a surprisingly high-quality carrying case. The kit also includes a few extra rubber sleeves, which go on the ends of the attachments, a charging cable and instructions. 

Again, compared to the competition, you're getting a lot more accessories for the money. However, if you're like me and tend to stick to one or two massage heads, this may not matter much.

An LED ring indicates how hard you're pressing

Bob and Brad C2 Pro Heat and Ice Massage Gun.

(Image credit: Future)

This feature I really dig: While using the Bob and Brad C2 Pro, the LED ring on the back of the device changes colors to indicate how much pressure you're applying to your muscles. 

A glowing blue ring indicates minimal pressure. A yellow ring corresponds to between 11 and 17 pounds of force; an orange ring is 17 to 26 pounds; and a red ring is 26 to 33 pounds. 

You can technically push it beyond 33 pounds of force, as the advertised stall force is 44 pounds, but this may cause the gun's motor to stop temporarily.

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Dan Bracaglia
Senior Writer, Fitness & Wearables

Dan Bracaglia covers fitness and consumer technology with an emphasis on wearables for Tom's Guide. Based in the US Pacific Northwest, Dan is an avid outdoor adventurer who dabbles in everything from kayaking to snowboarding, but he most enjoys exploring the cities and mountains with his small pup, Belvedere. Dan is currently training to climb some of Washington State's tallest peaks. He's also a big photography nerd.