The 19 Best Wireless Earbuds for Running and Working Out

Chances are when you get ready for your run you’re charging up your headphones to listen to your running playlist or podcast. If you’re looking for the best wireless earbuds to help improve your performance when running or working out there are plenty of options out there. We asked several fitness experts to share what they look for and like in running and workout earbuds.

Benefits of wireless earbuds

Science tells us that music can help improve our mood and relax our muscles. “Music has the ability to transform a workout experience, making movement more desirable and exercises more bearable for people of all ages and fitness levels,” explains Cathy Spencer-Browning, VP of programming and Training at MOSSA, which provides programming to health clubs and also has an at-home streaming platform.

“One of the most exciting things that music does for us when we are working out is that it actually improves our performance,” says. Spencer-Browning. It does this in two ways, it delay feelings of fatigue and also increases work capacity. “This results in higher-than-expected levels of endurance, power, productivity and/or strength.”

This sentiment is shared by Marisella Villano, owner of the Marvil Fit fitness studio in the Hamptons. “A good sound, a good beat can be the difference between a good workout or crushing your workout.”And when you crush your workouts, she says it sets the tone for your day. “The right earbuds will help you crush your workouts and give you a chance to run, swim, jump, cycle, sweat, work, play or just chill.”

Which wireless earbud is the best?

So, what constitutes the “right“ wireless earbuds (also known as in-ear headphones) for running and working out? For starters, you’ll definitely want them to be durable and have at least an IPX4 water-resistant rating. Assuming you’re going to be sweating while you’re working out, sweatproof earbuds are essential and an IPX7 water resistance rating means the earbuds can be temporarily immersed in water.

Sound quality is another important feature. You want great sound when you’re working out, and if the earbuds sound crappy, you may as well just whistle or hum to yourself. The rest of the criteria may depend on your preferences. For example, you want a secure fit, but how that relates to a comfortable fit may vary. Some people prefer earbuds with a neckband, while others can’t stand the thought of something hanging from their ears or resting on their neck. Some people prefer ear hooks, while others despise any type of hook or bone conduction headphones. And then, there are people who just want a variety of ear tips to ensure the perfect ear canal fit.

Other choices include transparency mode. Noise-canceling earbuds block out exterior sounds, but some people prefer to hear ambient sound for safety reasons. The ability to take phone calls can be essential to some people, and a distraction to others so hands-free wireless connectivity is something to look out for in its features. Below you’ll find options from brands like Bose, Jabra, Beats, Sony, JLab, and more.

Bose Sport Earbuds

Black Bose earphones

Amazon

Bose Sport Earbuds

The Bose Sport Earbuds are among the most popular and highly recommended and for good reason.  “I love that they are sweat- and weather-resistant,” Bill Daniels, a personal trainer (CSCS) and owner of Beyond Fitness Online, says. “They also go above and beyond to make sure that the sport earbuds fit perfectly in your ear.” As a result, Daniels says you can really push hard during a workout and not worry about the earbuds either falling out or shorting out due to water or sweat. The in-ear true wireless earbuds have IPX4 water- and sweat-resistance rating, simple touch controls, and battery life is five hours.

Amazfit PowerBuds Pro

Earbuds with white case

Amazon

Amazfit PowerBuds Pro

The Amazfit PowerBuds Pro gets high marks from Daniels for several reasons. “The music quality is great, and there’s a great range of sounds and noise-canceling technology.” But what he likes most are the health features. “The earbuds monitor your heart rate through your ear with no extra fitness equipment needed—just pop these in and open the app, and you can monitor your workout from there.” The in-ear wireless earbuds, which use Bluetooth 5.0 and have an IP55 sweat-resistant and water-resistance rating, also track such metrics as speed, distance, and calories burned. You can use the earbuds for nine hours before the battery needs to be charged.

Jabra Elite 4 Active

Sporty black earbuds

Amazon

Jabra Elite 4 Active

The durable Jabra Elite 4 Active true wireless earbuds have a secure and ergonomic fit, IP57 waterproof rating, and you can wear each earbud for seven hours before recharging. That’s why these in-ear workout headphones are often considered the best Apple Airpods Pro alternative. “You can listen to music, take a call, cancel out surrounding noise or set it up to hear what is going on around you,” says Daniel. That’s because the earbuds have active noise cancellation and are also adjustable to hear through when you want to let the external sounds in—making them great running headphones for people who need to hear their environment. “Easy connectivity to your phone via Bluetooth means you are ready to go in no time,” Daniels says.

Amazon Echo Buds 2nd Gen Wireless Earbuds

Sporty white earbuds

Amazon

Amazon Echo Buds 2nd Gen Wireless Earbuds

Another popular option, the Amazon Echo Buds 2nd Gen with active noise canceling, proves to have impressive audio quality. “I love that you can use this with voice command: if you are in the middle of an exercise and you want to switch up the beat or change the volume, it’s easy to do,” Daniel says. “Don’t even take your phone out of your pocket—the voice command (Google Assistant or Siri) is fantastic and the battery seems to last forever.” A single charge can provide up to five hours of battery life.

JLab Epic Air Sport

Black earbuds with case

Amazon

JLab Epic Air Sport

If you’re looking for a quality pair of earbuds under $100 that doesn’t skimp out on quality, The JLab Epic Air Sport earbuds are a favorite of Lauren Powell, performance coach at Future, an app that pairs people with a remote fitness coach. The JLab Epic Air Sport was her first quarantine purchase when she started running again. “The biggest benefit of these was the quality for the cost. Very affordable and got the job done as running headphones.” Powell says they stayed in well during runs and felt very comfortable. However, after a year, the right earbud stopped working (although the left earbud was fine). “I would absolutely purchase them again at this price point,” she says.

Alison Roessler, strength and conditioning specialist, and founder/CEO of Truve, a private training facility, and wellness center in Oakland, CA, also likes the JLab Epic Air Sport earbuds. “The 70+ hours of battery life (15 without the charging case) is amazing, and it makes these a great pair of wireless headphones to take on vacation or for people who do ultramarathons or other long-duration races since there is no need to worry about charging them,” she says.

Sony WF-C500

Sporty black earbuds

Amazon

Sony WF-C500

When Powell found herself in need of another pair of earbuds, she went with the Sony WF-C500. “These were my replacements for the JLab and I love them,” she tells SELF. “My favorite part about these are the battery life and the option to change out the size of the earpiece to my comfort,” Powell says. The earbuds have been great for running headphones, as well as walking and weight training, and the secure fit means she doesn’t have to worry about them falling out.

“These are also GREAT at noise reduction and can get loud without being too much,” she explains. “The battery life for the Sony earbuds themselves is already incredible (10 hours from a single charge), then the carrying case (which works as a charging bank) also lasts forever (20 hours).” In addition, she loves that this Sony model is at an affordable price point and says they are her favorite earbuds.” The earbuds, which have an IPX4 waterproof rating, work well with both Apple and Android products.

Raycon The Fitness Earbuds

Red earbuds with case

Amazon

Raycon The Fitness Earbuds

According to Villano, if you’re looking for the total package, the Raycon Sport Earbuds earbuds may be it. “First, they come in a bunch of fun colors (Flare Red, Electric Blue, Carbon Black, Frost White, Rose Gold).” And she says the fact that they are rain- and sweatproof (IPX7) is a bonus.

When going outside for workouts, Villano says awareness mode is one of her favorite modes. “Awareness mode helps you hear the world around you so you can be safer and more alert in your outdoor workouts—safety first.” And that’s not all that she likes. “With a long battery life of 54 hours and 9 hours of play time, you won’t miss a beat.”

Bose SoundSport Free

Sporty black earbuds

Amazon

Bose SoundSport Free

Even more popular than the Bose Sport earbuds are the Bose SoundSport Free earbuds, which are also considered an Airpods Pro alternative for in-ear workout headphones. They have StayHear +Sport tips to be comfortable and also secure. “There is nothing worse than your earbuds falling out mid-workout,” says Roessler. “Silicone buds also make it easier to fit your ears vs hard mold earbuds, especially for people who have two different sized ear canals.” The Bose SoundSport Free earbuds have an IPX4 sweat-resistant rating, and the battery life is five hours or 10 hours with the charging case. There’s also another cool feature that’s helpful if you tend to lose your earbuds. The Bose Connect app lets you track missing earbuds and can tell you when and where they were last used, and also trigger an audio alert from the earbuds so you can follow the sound to find them.

Jabra Elite 7 Active

Sporty black earbuds

Amazon

Jabra Elite 7 Active

ShakeGrip technology is what first attracted us to the Jabra Elite 7 Active earbuds since they’re designed to stay in place whether you’re using them as running headphones or doing other types of fitness activities. But that’s not the only reason we like them. (Full disclosure: we also love the Jabra Elite Active 75t.)

“The ability of these workout headphones to connect with Google is perhaps more than you will ever need, but super convenient if you do,” Roessler says. “It allows you to take care of things as they pop up during your workout without stopping.” The headphones also have an IP57 waterproof rating and a battery life of up to eight hours.

Roessler also likes the ability to personalize sound preferences. “With most headphones, you can’t adjust much more than volume up and down, so the ability to customize how you want to hear the sound around you or to block it all out is a plus.” From active noise cancellation to the Adjustable HearThrough mode, and being able to use just one liquid silicone rubber earbud at a time, the Jabra Elite 7 Active can handle any type of workout.

Beats Fit Pro

Black and red earbuds

Amazon

Beats Fit Pro

Phung D. Tran, fitness coach and founder of Atlanta, GA-based Be Active is Easy, gives the Beats Fit Pro two thumbs up. “A better version of Apple’s AirPod Pro, they have a ‘little wing’ design to help the earbuds fit better in your ears, and they deliver good sound quality,” she says.

Roessler adds that Beats is known for amazing sound technology and it doesn’t disappoint with these earbuds. “The 360 surround sound that moves as you do is pretty incredible,” she says. “The ability to pair seamlessly via Bluetooth with Apple devices and hands-free connectivity with Siri is a game-changer, definitely one of the best options on the market.” The Beats Fit Pro workout headphones, which use the Apple H1 Chip, are rated IPX4 for water resistance and can provide up to six hours of battery life or 24 with the charging case.

Marshall Motif

Black earbuds with textured case

Amazon

Marshall Motif

What stands out about the Marshall Motif earbuds to Tran? “Excellent sound quality, light, and can fit nicely in most ears,” she says. Villano adds that they’re water-resistant (IPX4) with 4.5 hours of battery life and 20 total hours when using the charging case. “Also, the wireless headphones allow you to set your own noise-canceling level for times when you need to be aware of your environment and for times you just want to rock out in your sweat sess.” Other features that stand out to her are the three ear tip options for a customizable fit and the smart touch controls. “You’ve got no excuse to skip your workout here,” she says.

Beats Powerbeats Pro

Dark slate and gold earbuds

Amazon

Beats Powerbeats Pro

Villano is a big fan of Beats products and likes the fact that (as with any Beats product) connectivity is quite easy. “Also, the Beats Powerbeats Pro have a unique ear hook design compared to other earbuds with different size ear tips for a comfortable fit,” she says. If you have an iPhone, you can enjoy the hands-free iOS voice activation by simply saying, ‘Hey Siri,’ and you can even share audio with a friend by being able to pair two sets of Beats headphones to your device.” This will allow you to crush your workouts with a pal. “Plus, in a pinch, the true wireless Powerbeats Pro has a five-minute fast charge feature that will give you 1.5 hours of battery life and offer a two-hour full recharge for nine hours of play time.

Soundcore by Anker Life A1

Sporty black earbuds

Amazon

Soundcore by Anker Life A1

If you’re looking for a budget choice that performs well, you can’t go wrong with the Anker Soundcore A1 true wireless earbuds, which have an IPX7 waterproof rating. “Affordability and simplicity are bonuses with these earbuds,” Villano says. “Their design is straightforward with 3 custom mode sounds ranging from base booster to podcast mode, so you can either jam to your beats and playlist or clearly listen to a podcast.” And that’s not all that she likes about these in-ear headphones. “Their quick 10 min charge time can offer 1.5-hours of playtime while offering nine hours of battery life on a single charge (35 hours with the charging case)—and you can tap on the Bluetooth-enabled earbuds to control voice activation with Google Assistant or Siri, play music, or grab a call.”

SkullCandy Push Active

Black earbuds in orange and black case

Amazon

SkullCandy Push Active

The Skullcandy Push Active true wireless earbuds are another affordable option with plenty of features, including Bluetooth 5.2. “The ear hook design keeps them snug while sporting a little pop of color to keep you vibing, and they are sweat- and water-resistant” (IP55 rating),” Villano says. In addition, she also likes the hands-free voice control feature on the wireless headphones. “Plus, 10 hours of battery life (44 total) from a single charge and a 10-minute quick charge for two hours of play time is a nice feature for these inexpensive earbuds—and let’s not forget the option to use Spotify tap for a seamless listening experience.”

Shokz OpenRun Pro

Teal headphones

Amazon

Shokz OpenRun Pro

When you want to be acutely aware of your surroundings, the Shokz OpenRun Pro bone conduction headphones are uniquely designed to help you achieve that goal. That’s because they sit on the side of your ears and send sound vibrations, so there’s nothing actually in your ears, which allows you to hear what’s going on. This is especially important when running or biking. The sport headphones have a titanium frame that wraps around your head and is designed to stay in place regardless of how you’re moving. The Shokz Open Run Pro bone conduction headphones use Bluetooth 5.1, have an IP55 water-resistance rating, and can provide up to 10 hours of battery life. 

Note: Shokz was previously known as Aftershokz, but recently rebranded.

Tribit MoveBuds H1 Earbuds

Black earbuds with red details

Tribit

Tribit MoveBuds H1 Earbuds

There’s much to like about the Tribit Movebuds H1 earbuds. “Can we say affordable? These wireless headphones are great for the frugal or budget-conscious consumer,” Villano says. “They are waterproof and sweatproof (IPX8), corrosion-resistant, and offer anti-bacterial ear tips to let the music in and keep the germs out.” And they provide 15 hours of battery life and 65 hours with the charging case so you can go through every playlist in your phone without recharging. “The ear hook design provides stability to help keep the earbuds in your ears while listening to your favorite beats. You can also submerge them in up to one meter of water for 30 minutes,” Villano says.

1More Comfobuds Mini

Black earbuds with black case

Amazon

1More Comfobuds Mini

The 1MORE Comfobuds Mini claims to be the world’s lightest and smallest earbuds. ”If discrete is what you are looking for, well here you go,” Villano says. “They are waterproof and offer seamless connection to your devices with Bluetooth 5.2,” she says. There are also four different noise cancellation modes: Active noise cancellation strong mode, active noise cancellation mild mode, wind noise-resistant mode, and transparency mode for times when you need to hear what’s going on around you. “And let’s not forget the 10-minute quick charge time for 90 minutes of play time,” she says, while a full charge can provide up to six hours of battery life on a single earbud or 24 hours with the charging case.

Beyerdynamic Blue Byrd 2

Black headphones

Amazon

Beyerdynamic Blue Byrd 2

“If you’re looking for the old school feel of wired sport headphones with the convenience of wireless ones, the Beyerdynamic Blue BRYD 2 in-ear headphones might be the pair you’re looking for,” Villano says. “This headset offers a built-in Alexa connectivity, easy pairing with Bluetooth 5.2, quality microphone for your phone calls, and a convenient neck band to keep you from losing your workout earbuds.“ She also likes the 5 sizes of ear tips for ultimate comfort so you can enjoy listening to a long playlist. “And just a 10-minute quick recharge can provide a 2-hours of play time (the earbuds can provide up to 14 hours total), plus, the earbuds are water-resistant (IPX4 rating).”

V-MODA Hexamove Lite

Black and white earbuds

Amazon

V-MODA Hexamove Lite

The V-Moda Hexamove Lite true wireless earbuds provide six hours of battery life and a total of 18 hours with the charging case. “Easily pairing with Bluetooth 5.0, the water-resistant earbuds are light and offer touch sensors for playback, voice control assistance (Google Assistant, Siri, and call answering,” says Villano. “I also like that these in-ear earbuds are simple, straightforward, and come in fun colors too, like black, red, and sand white.” They’re also ergonomic and provide a secure fit, making them a good choice for running or workout earbuds.

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