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No one wants to exercise in silence. Regardless of the type of headphones, you’re using, music is a staple of a good workout routine. A great running playlist can help to keep you motivated for the duration of your run.

Picking running headphones can be a little challenging. You need comfortable earbuds, a long-lasting battery life, and headphones that won’t entirely block out your surroundings. 

Let’s take a look at a few important features you should consider when choosing running headphones, as well as three top picks. 

Considerations For Choosing the Best Running Headphones

Bear in mind that you’ll be wearing these headphones when you’re hot, sweaty, and out of breath.


You’ll need a comfortable set of earbuds that won’t be shaken out of place by the rhythm of your run.

Picking a set of headphones that come with a variety of ear tips is a good way to make sure your earpieces will fit well. Some headphones include specialised hooks and bands to properly keep wireless earphones secure in your ears. I found that wireless headphones for the gym, running, cycling etc are often multi-purpose, both designed for sweating, water, security and most importantly comfort. 

Battery life

If you’re looking into wireless earphones, battery life is an important consideration, since there’s few things more annoying than your headphones running out of battery halfway through your run. 

A quick charge case may be a good idea. That way, you can give your earphones one last battery boost while you’re getting ready to lace up and hit the pavements. 


Bluetooth connectivity is one of the simplest connections to set up, effortlessly connecting your headphones with your phone or music device. 

However, poor connectivity can be unbelievably frustrating. Before investing in a pair of running headphones, check out the connectivity requirements. Set up your connections before you start your run.


The better the earbuds fit, the better your sound quality will be. This is because the earbuds create a seal with your ear canal, blocking out background noise. 

Noise cancelling headphones may seem attractive, but it’s important to remain aware of your surroundings when you’re out for a run. You may have found differing advice about running while listening to music. In the end, the choice is up to you. Weigh the pros and cons of running with headphones, and decide what level of noise isolation is comfortable for you.


Finally, think about your budget. A bigger price tag isn’t necessarily a guarantee of good quality, just like cheaper headphones won’t guarantee bad. Usually, however, the price of a set of headphones reflects its price. 

You don’t need to pay hundreds for a good, durable set of headphones. But paying a little more can get you a set of headphones that will last for years (countless runs) to come. 

Our Top 3 Running Headphones in 2020

1. Bose SoundSport Wireless Headphones

These are wireless headphones, but not true wireless. While they do use Bluetooth and NFC pairing, the earbuds themselves are connected by a cable which loops around the back of your head. 

This can be handy, especially if you have a tendency to drop your headphones. The earbuds themselves stay comfortably in your ears without the cable, but it does add an extra layer of security. 


The Bose SoundSport headphones provide up to six hours of battery life per charge. With only two hours to a full charge, these are pretty quick charging earphones. They’re also sweat and water resistant, which means that a sudden rain shower won’t put you off your run!

2. AfterShokz Aeropex Open-Ear Wireless Sports Running Headphones

This open-ear design allows your ears to breathe and reduces ear fatigue. It also means that you can keep a close eye (or ear) on your surroundings, without missing out on your music. 

This can be a much safer option if you run alone. Running is much more fun when you have the trail to yourself, but it’s good to be aware of your surroundings at all times

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On top of this, the AfterShokz Open-Ear headphones are water-proof, ergonomically designed for security and comfort, and offer great sound quality, along with up to eight hours playing time. 

3. Powerbeats High-Performance Wireless Earphones

If you’re working on a tight budget, the Powerbeats wireless earphones provide a good combination of value and quality. Setting up the Bluetooth connection is simple. Once you’ve connected your headphones to your device, taking the earpieces in and out of the charging case will automatically turn the connection on and off. 

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The quick charge option can give you up to two hours of playback time. A strap on the charging case allows you to easily take the case with you wherever you go. 

Best Headphones Overall

The best headphones you could pick for running are the AfterShokz Aeropex Open-Ear Wireless headphones

Combining comfort, quality, durability, and security, these headphones may be a little pricier than some other options, but they deliver high value. 

On top of that, their open-ear design adds an extra layer of awareness and security to your run, without taking away the relaxing and motivating power of your music.

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