Two emerging back massage products - Chirp Wheel and QL Claw - came into the market by storm over the last few years. Although quite different in shape and function, both Chirp Wheel and QL Claw attempt to solve the same crippling problem of lower back pain via their non-invasive massage techniques. This article reviews the Chirp Wheel product alongside our own - the QL Claw.
Chirp Wheel Review & QL Claw Comparison
What Is Chirp Wheel?
The Chirp Wheel is a novel variation of the foam roller, designed to massage the paraspinal muscles with more intensity than its predecessor. Chirp Wheel utilizes the same motion as the foam roller to massage back muscles, and upon first inspection, it could actually appear no different. However, unlike a foam roller Chirp Wheel massages the spinal erectors with great intensity - potentially breaking up a lot of tension and tightness correlated to back pain. Think of a foam roller as a wide, broad massage to the back, while Chirp Wheel is a slimmer, more targeted approach.
How Does Chirp Wheel Work?
Chirp Wheel Function 1 Review: Massage
There is no question that a soothing massage is great for back pain relief. Rolling out stiff trigger points, knots, and tension in any muscles can potentially relieve a ton of pain.
Chirp Wheel works by rolling out the spinal erector (aka paraspinal) muscles adjacent to the spine. These muscles can develop a ton of tension and pressure when sitting with poor posture - which many of us do unconsciously all day every day. The spinal erector muscles can also become overtaxed from high levels of physical activity and manual labor.
Chirp Wheel massages the spinal erector muscles nicely, while also arching the back in the opposite direction of the hunchback posture - potentially correcting spinal alignment as well.
Chirp Wheel Function 2 Review: Posture Correction
Chirp Wheel's second function is extremely important - arching the back to combat slouched, rounded shoulder posture. This function corrects posture well and can elicit some soothing back cracks. Posture correction alone is a reason to consider using the Chirp Wheel, as we see with similar tools like the back cracker board.
Poor posture places a ton of unnecessary pressure and strain on the lower back. Correcting posture with a Chirp Wheel or another method can go a very long way in helping relieve back pain (read how can poor posture result in back pain for a deeper understanding).
Chirp Wheel Review vs. QL Claw
If you are deciding between a rolling massage tool such as Chirp Wheel against a deep tissue trigger point tool like QL Claw, one could be much better for your case than the other. Both products have indisputable merit when used correctly and can provide the quick relief you are looking for via different mechanisms. That being said - here is a brief review of a few differences between the Chirp Wheel and QL Claw:
Chirp Wheel Review
Chirp Wheel is a great posture corrector for the average desk jockey. It will help a ton to undo the slouched, rounded shoulder posture most folks hold while sitting. If you sit 8+ hours a day like the hunchback of Notre Dame, hopping on the Chirp Wheel after work should feel amazing.
Chirp Wheel can also roll out the tension in the poor spinal erector muscles that get strained from slouching and physical overuse. Our Chirp Wheel review conclusion is that it offers a soothing, rolling massage to the back at a level above a traditional foam roller.
QL Claw Comparison
QL Claw is a deep-tissue massage tool designed to bust up years of muscle tension in specific muscles that contribute to lower back pain. Think of QL Claw as a sniper approach that a physical or massage therapist would take with their thumbs, knuckles, and elbows. If you have years of built-up low back, hip, and glute tension QL Claw is for you.
QL Claw is essentially a knuckle on a block, so it will be considerably different than a Chirp Wheel or foam roller. Think of QL Claw as your massage therapist's elbow at home, able to access the nooks and crannies of tension that directly contribute to lower back pain.
Is Chirp Wheel Right For Me?
In short - probably. If you sit down, need help with posture, or just enjoy a deep tissue roll along the spine (which includes nearly everybody), Chirp Wheel is great. However, if you have a deeper, more complex lower back muscle problem QL Claw is the way to go. QL Claw was designed to release the 5 major muscles that contribute to lower back pain when tight via deep tissue massage tactics. QL Claw is much deeper and targeted than a foam roller or Chirp Wheel, and is more for folks battling lower back and hip pains directly.
Both QL Claw and Chirp Wheel have a place in your home. Each tool helps different individuals with different ailments - maybe one day you need the Chirp Wheel and maybe the next you need the Claw.
Final Chirp Wheel Review vs. QL Claw
If it is the budget and you have an ultra-screwed-up lower back, I honestly recommend both tools. Back pain relief is worth more than the cost of either product. If you only choose one, do your best to review your symptoms and determine which tool is most likely to treat your particular condition, and consult a professional if need be. For more on lower back trigger points, poor posture, and how you can help relieve your back pain (with or without Chirp Wheel and QL Claw) - read one of the articles below next:
 Donnelly, Joseph M. Travell, Simons & Simons Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: the Trigger Point Manual. 3rd ed., Wolters Kluwer Health, 2019.
 Davies, Clair, and Amber Davies. The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook: Your Self-Treatment Guide for Pain Relief. 3rd ed., New Harbinger Publications, Inc., 2013.