The Hitachi Magic Wand is one of America’s most famous products when it comes to electronic personal massagers. Hitachi’s story starts with a Japanese company by the same name. The electronic massager was first listed for sale in the United States during the spring of 1968 as an effective tool used to relieve sore muscles and tension at home. This personal tool is mains-powered and able to deliver strong vibrations through its 2.5” rubberized head. Keep reading to learn more about Hitachi’s personal massager and its cordless counterpart.
The Hitachi Magic Wand massager was designed to relieve pain, tension, and back aches, soothe nerves and muscles, and aid in recovery after sports injuries. The Wand is registered by the FDA as a “physical medicine product” in the category “therapeutic electric massager.”
This magical massager has been used to treat several ailments and has appeared in studies related to many diseases. In 2004, for example, the Journal of Applied Physiology ran a report describing Ely Rabin and Andrew M. Gordon’s success in using Hitachi’s massager to investigate proprioception signals in human beings. The two researchers published follow up reports in 2006 and 2010, the latter of which also mentioned the Magic Wand as a way to simulate the biceps brachia. The studies included individuals with Parkinson’s disease.
Hitachi’s Magic Wand has also been used to study balance problems including vertigo. A study published in 2011 in the International Journal of Otolaryngology outlined Jeremy Hornibrook’s study of an inner ear problem known as Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). This disorder is the most common cause of vertigo – a problem blamed on a detached otoconia in one of a person’s semicircular canals.
To treat patients with BPPV, Hornibrook advised a repositioning treatment from the posterior canal area. The procedure he used was similar to the Epley maneuver. Afterwards, he recommended a Dix-Hallpike test to ascertain the status of the disorder. If the test was positive, Hornibrook urged doctors to use Hitachi’s product to send vibrations to the mastoid process area.
Myalgia refers to muscle pain and can be a symptom of many disorders and diseases. The most common cause of myalgia is simple overuse or over-stretching of a particular muscle or group of muscles. Myalgia can also be caused by viral infections. Long-term myalgia can indicate a metabolic myopathy, chronic fatigue syndrome, or nutritional deficiency. Depending on the cause, this disorder can be effectively treated by taking certain vitamins and supplements.
In the book Myofascial Pain and Fibromyalgia: Trigger Point Management, authors Edward S. Rachlin (an orthopedic surgeon) and Isabel Rachlin (a physical therapist) advised patients with myalgia to use the Wand for self-treatment. The Rachlins wrote that with frequent use on myofascial trigger points, the Wand could effectively decrease pain and discomfort. As a bonus, such treatments can be done in the comfort of one’s own home.
The Magic Wand has also been used to alleviate pain before dermatologic and cosmetic techniques. A 2004 article in the Dermatology Online Journal recommends using the Wand before or during the following procedures to decrease pain:
- An injection of triamcinolone acetonide to treat psoriasis
- An injection of Restylane into the nasolabial fold
- IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) facial treatments
- Axillary hyperhidrosis treatment involving botulinum toxin
Finally, this personal massager has also been used to alleviate discomfort in newborns during neonatal heel pricks. Doctors placed the massage tool, on the highest setting, against the baby’s heel for about five seconds before the heel stick procedure. According to the Neonatal Infant Pain Scale, this method was able to deliver relief to the newborn.
Magic Wand General Review
The latest model of the Magic Wand is available on Amazon.com for $44.89. Many users, however, recommend visiting the official site to check for authorized retailers before you buy in order to be sure of purchasing an authentic product.
The newest model offers stronger construction and updated components, but is very similar to the original product. The Wand is 12.5” long and weighs just over one pound. Muscles and nerves are stimulated by the rubber head of the massager, which is attached to the “handle” with a flexible neck. The device is able to provide very strong vibrations because it operates while plugged into the wall. The cord is just over 5 feet long and many individuals suggest using an extension cord for additional comfort. The Wand provides two vibration modes – 5,000 and 6,000rpm (83Hz and 100Hz) – that are easily controlled with a switch on the handle.
Most users consider the highly rated Hitachi wand to be powerful and effective. The product works great when used to massage yourself or someone else. The biggest complaints, however, are:
- Bulky design
- Gets heavy after a while
- Not water resistant
- Overheats if used for over 25 minutes
- Odd and unattractive design makes it look like a game controller, kitchen appliance, or even a weapon from Star Trek
Many users noted that the textured head is hard to clean. Think about it: you wouldn’t want to use the product on your girlfriend’s feet and then use it on your neck without washing it.
A user who has been using the Wand for years sums up her experience: “I love my Magic Wand! It is reliable, consistent, and always there for me! With its two settings, “de-stresser” and “did I just time travel?” It really hits the spot!!”
A Personal Experience
I have owned a Hitachi Magic Wand for about six months now – and I love it! I bought the original version, not the rechargeable one described below. The device looks nothing like the sleek yet weak massagers you would find at stores like Brookstone. The power this little massager delivers is truly surprising.
I particularly like to use the massager on a sore neck after work or on sore feet and legs from exercising (beware, people with ticklish feet may not like it!). As other users note, you can use a washcloth or towel to create a softer sensation for sensitive or sore areas. It’s also useful to use this tactic when massaging bony areas – as even the lowest setting can be rough and teeth-jarring when going over a bone (think feet and spine).
The tool isn’t too loud while operating and I find that with the long handle I can reach any muscle, even my entire back. Up until now, I had not found a hand-held massager that was powerful enough and ergonomically feasible of reaching one’s entire back. The Wand is also a great tool to use when massaging a partner. Keep in mind that your hand may go numb during use due to intense vibrations.
Rechargeable Magic Wand
For $103.99, you can purchase the unplugged version of “America’s favorite” personal massager on Amazon.com. Product dimensions are very similar to the original Wand, however, the cordless version boasts four speed settings, four rhythm settings, and a silicone head for added comfort; it can be used while charging.
The cordless model is 13” long and the massaging tip is 2.5” in diameter. According to the product manual, charging takes up to 3 hours. When fully charged, the device’s battery will last about 3 hours. The cordless massager operates using a lithium ion battery (like an iPhone).
Users found the silicone head much easier to clean than the textured head of the original Hitachi. However, keep in mind that the rest of the Wand is not water resistant or waterproof. One customer who purchased the rechargeable Hitachi this year commented that she enjoyed the “pretty blue and green LED lights that shine through the handle to show you which intensity level and rhythm you are currently on. The original wand did not have this at all.”
If you do not enjoy powerful vibrations, users recommend placing a washcloth or towel over the head for a more gentle sensation.
A massage is only effective when done correctly. To use the Hitachi Wand properly, apply the vibrating head on any major muscle, from the neck to the feet, for no longer than 20 minutes. For a more stimulating experience, begin with the lowest setting and then move up.
Anyone with the following conditions/issues should check with a doctor before using any personal massager:
- Pins, screws, or a pacemaker
- Recent surgery
The best part about this massager is that is provides a relaxing and effective massage in your own home, anytime. Its powerful motor and long cord allows you to reach any area on your own. Plus, you’ll save money and time on trips to the spa.
A massage isn’t just about feeling good. A massage, whether personal or applied by a partner or professional, can enhance your mood, encourage relaxation, eliminate toxins from the body, and even increase blood flow to your body’s cells. Massage can also help prevent injuries, speed recovery, ease inflammation, and speed up cell repair. Others believe that massage can improve the quality of your sleep, boost your immune system, and ease anxiety. No matter which of these benefits you’re looking to gain from massage, the Hitachi can help you get there.
This is no fad. For more than 30 years, the Magic Wand has been one of the most trusted, popular, and effective personal massage tools in America. Its durability and power has earned this massager rave reviews time after time. While Edume brings you honest reviews about quality products like the Hitachi, it also exposes fads. Click here to learn the truth behind the popular weight loss supplement Garcinia Cambogia.