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> What kind of running headphones to choose and what to consider when buying?

What kind of running headphones to choose and what to consider when buying?

Publish date 08.03.2023

You can read it in 7 minut

What kind of running headphones to choose and what to consider when buying?

Most runners can’t imagine going out for a workout without their phones and headphones. These allow you to focus more on your breathing and the rhythm at which you should run. Choosing the right playlist not only makes your running time more enjoyable but also sets the right pace. 

Everyone has their preferences for headphones. You need to choose the right ones because you shouldn’t be disturbed by anything during your workout, and certainly not your headphones. If they fall out of your ear, pinch, or you keep (unintentionally) pulling on the cable that connects the headphones to your phone, it’s a sign that you should choose a different model.

Headphones have their advantages and disadvantages. In this article, I will show you what you should pay attention to when choosing headphones for running. What’s more, you’ll also learn which type might be best for you.

What to look for when choosing the right headphones?

Before we move on to choosing the type of headphones, it is worth focusing on the most important parameters that will make using them more enjoyable during your workouts. See what you need to pay attention to before buying running headphones.

  • additional reinforcement that prevents the earphone from falling out of the ear – this is probably one of the problems that are most troublesome for runners. The earphone falling out is an annoying thing. Constantly correcting it is not convenient. You can choose, for example, a special earphone holder. Before buying them, try them on (if possible), or buy the right gadgets that will allow you to use the headphones comfortably, even if they fall out. I will tell you about these gadgets later in the article.
  • weight – it is best to choose models that are light and will not weigh you down. There are models of in-ear headphones that are large, make the ambient noise quieter, and thanks to that the quality of the music that you listen to is better. However, it may happen that the headphones will weigh you down, because they are lying on your head, and if, in addition, they jump up and change their position, it can get on your nerves.
  • water resistance – It may start to rain during your workout. That’s when waterproof headphones will work, and you won’t have to worry about them being damaged. It’s not raining? Then maybe you sweat a lot? Then also pay attention to their water resistance.
  • microphone and controller – will allow you to seamlessly answer calls and talk even during your workout. What’s more, with the controller, you can change the music, and turn the sound up and down.
  • sound quality and degree of ambient soundproofing – one thing is for sure, if you want high-quality sound, then you need to pay more for running headphones. As for soundproofing your surroundings, try to choose models where you will hear something. Total soundproofing can be dangerous. It’s a good idea to be aware of what’s going on around you during your workout. Even if you are training on a path that is isolated from people, a wild animal may start chasing you, and you won’t even be aware of it, due to the high degree of ambient soundproofing.
  • battery life – deciding on wireless headphones? See how many hours a single charge will last. There’s probably nothing worse than having your headphones suddenly turn off. Therefore, always check how much battery percentage your headphones have and buy those that have a long-lasting battery and don’t need to charge them often.
  • good Bluetooth connection – this aspect is very important when it comes to wireless headphones. When you are trying to choose good running headphones, you certainly don’t want the connection between your phone and headphones to be suddenly broken. You also don’t want to hear cracking while listening to music.

Types of running headphones – which one to choose for yourself?

In-ear running headphones 

This type of headphone holds well in the ear because they go directly into the ear canal. This allows you to hear the music better, even when the volume is low. This makes you protect your ears from loud music that can damage your hearing. 

They have overlays that are interchangeable and can be sized to fit your ear. This makes them stay in the ear canal even better and you don’t have to constantly adjust them during your workout. 

When should you opt for in-ear headphones? 

  • when you care about high sound quality,
  • you want to listen to music more quietly, even in a noisy place, 
  • in places where it is noisy, such as at the gym. With these headphones, you will focus on the music, and the ambient noise will not be so annoying.
In-ear headphones for runners

Earbuds for runners 

These are running headphones that are not embedded deep in the ear. They are small, light, and have a flat shape. They don’t have any rubber overlay like the previous version. Therefore, it may fall out of your ear. 

You can’t change the size with the overlay. Therefore, for such headphones, you need to buy additional support to keep the headphones in your ear, especially when you are running on a bumpy road. 

Before buying such headphones, it’s a good idea to try on a pair of them to see how they are adjusting in your ear. 

When will earbuds work well for a runner?

  • when you are running outdoors and need to hear what is going on around you – these types of headphones do not drown out ambient sounds. 
  • when you have a wide ear canal or your ears already hurt to listen to music in in-ear headphones. 
  • you don’t want to spend a lot of money on running headphones – but you need to keep in mind that this will translate into sound quality and workmanship in general.
Earbuds - running headphones

Over-ear headphones for running 

On the running route, you can also spot people who run with large headphones. Of course, this solution has its pros and cons – like everything else. 

A huge plus for sure is the very good sound quality and soundproofing of the noises you hear in the environment. However, unfortunately, they are heavy, move, and can slip down on your head. 

What’s more, by thoroughly clogging the ear and the plastic element that sits on your head, you may experience more sweating in these areas. However, you can find headphones on the market that are much lighter. These types of running headphones may also have buttons to help you control music and even answer phone calls. 

When to choose over-ear running headphones for runners? 

  • when you care about the high quality of the music you listen to.
  • when you run indoors, for example, at the gym, or home on the treadmill – then you don’t have to worry about ambient sounds and be as alert. 
  • you prefer to have headphones on your ears rather than in your ears – you feel more comfortable – it’s the most important aspect.
Over-ear - good running headphones

Wireless headphones for running 

Now more and more people are opting for wireless headphones, which connect to your phone via Bluetooth. They don’t have a cable, so you don’t have to worry about inadvertently pulling on it and the headphones, along with your phone, falling out on the ground. 

If you decide to choose this type of headphones for running, then you need to look at the charging time and battery life. You also need to remember to look at how much battery life you have left before each workout so that the headphones don’t drain during your workout. 

However, when you are worried about the headphones stopping working during your workout, you can take a small power bank with you, in the form of a small box. Some models need only 5 minutes to continue working for another hour or more!

Wireless, Bluetooth headphones

Bone conduction running headphones 

These are headphones that you don’t place in or on your ears, but over them. This type of equipment takes advantage of the natural ability of the skeletal system to conduct sound. This allows you to hear music very well without having headphones in your ears.

With them, you can safely run even in a slightly more crowded area, as you can easily hear your surroundings. However, you must remember that not everyone will like such headphones.

Bone conduction - good running headphones

Headphone gadget for runners

Security for running headphones 

On the market, you can find headphones that have additional hooks. These are the ones that hold the earphone more securely to the auricle. This way you can worry less about having to correct them while running. 

I won’t answer your question about whether this is a good solution. You’ll have to test them yourself and decide for yourself. Choose the option that is comfortable for you.

Earmuffs for running

Earmuffs for running headphones will help you to keep your headphones in your auricle. Thanks to this gadget, they will not fall out so easily. You can find them in both stationary and online stores. Before buying them, size them to fit your ear. You will find larger and smaller sizes that will allow you to train comfortably with the running headphones.

Hopefully, now you know what features you should pay attention to when choosing the best running headphones. Moreover, you also know what types are on the market. With this knowledge, you are sure to choose the right type and model. Read about the chosen product on the Internet – not only technical information but also user reviews – this will give you confidence that you are choosing good running headphones. They should serve you for a long period. You certainly don’t want to quickly spend more money on another one. Choose wisely and listen to music, e-books, or podcasts during your workout.

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