In the Gym
Pumping iron at home and in the gym involves concentrated and planned movements. It is less likely to be at risk of dropping your headphones and it’s the perfect time to block out the rest of the world to focus on your workout. In many ways this next decision will come down to personal preference and could vary by the seasons. If you use an iPhone it is hard to look past the Apple AirPods Pro. The smaller design and added noise cancellation makes this a perfect companion in the gym. You won’t hear a single grunt from your workout neighbour and your tunes will sound perfectly clear. Their tight integration with the iPhone means you can simply use your voice to control your music, take (or ignore) calls and even compose messages. For those looking for small buds but live in the Android camp, the Jabra 85t is an excellent pick for the same reasons. The noise cancellation is outstanding and they’re even more discreet than the AirPods Pro. They also come with a two year warranty against dust and water so you won’t be worried about sweat either.
While earbuds are light and durable, many will want a larger pair of headphones. The Beats Solo Pro are on-ear headphones which provide an enclosed experience without producing the heat that over-ear headphones will. Durable and available in a range of colours, finding an ideal pair should be easy. Despite being on-ear headphones their noise cancellation is excellent and with over 20 hours of battery life you can safely leave them in your gym bag for weeks.
When it comes to pedalling through mountainside or on the bitumen, requirements change slightly. While the headphones should still be wireless, they need to stay out of the way of your helmet but still hold on. Dropping an earbud while cycling in a group or at speed could cause a major headache. The Sennheiser CX 150 in-ear wireless headphones are small buds with a lightweight cable connecting each side together. This means that if for whatever reason one side dislodges, it’ll hang around your neck and not bounce on the road. Controls for the volume are closer to your chin making track or volume changes simple, or you can use your smartphone voice assistant thanks to the excellent microphone. This pair is also without noise cancellation to ensure you are aware of your surroundings at all times.
Whether it is pounding the pavement or stressing on the treadmill, you’ll want your headphones to hold on even if you fall. The Beats Powerbeats Pro are a pair of wireless earbuds with a difference. Each earbud carries an arm to wrap around your ear to ensure that they won’t fall off, even if you’re doing cartwheels. The performance from these are also exceptional with solid bass and clear vocals. For running outdoors you will still be able to maintain a sense of awareness as these do not have active noise cancelling and for your own safety, this is a good thing. Apple users will be able to connect to the Powerbeats Pro seamlessly just like AirPods thanks to the special Apple W1 chip inside. With around 8 hours listening time and up to 24 hours with the charging case, you might only recharge them once a month.