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What are the features that make the best over-ear headphones for working out? These audio devices offer excellent sound quality and a super comfortable fit that will stay put during your gym workouts. These are the best headphones for blocking everyone else out in the gym and simply focusing on your fitness.
Plus, these headphones are also super convenient with additional features like noise cancelation, wireless connectivity, intuitive controls, and built-in microphones. If you opt for wireless headphones, you’ll get long battery life and reliable connection strength, too.
Continue reading below to learn more about the best over-ear headphones for working out and how you can find the right pair for all of your exercise needs.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: This model features an isolating soundstage, so you run to the beat or listen to an audiobook on an evening walk. Users will love the wire-free operation and comfortable fit that ensures they’ll feel unrestricted while enjoying their favorite tunes.
The TREBLAB Z2-B headphones are an excellent pick for users needing a comfortable over-ear headset to stay motivated during a challenging workout. This model helps you stay focused thanks to active noise canceling, and the impressive wireless range lets you leave your phone in the training bag. Additionally, these headphones have an included case that keeps them safe during travel. While this model still relies on Micro-USB charging, users will love the 35-hour battery life that won’t leave you at the gym without music.
In addition to active noise cancelation and a protective case, the TREBLAB Z2-B headphones are fabulous for dynamic workouts like cycling, running, or shooting baskets. These headphones are sweatproof and IPX4 water-resistant, so they can keep up with intense workouts or running through light rain. Additionally, this model features a built-in microphone so users can talk on the phone, and this unit works with voice assistants like Siri, Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: This model features comfortable cushions and breathable material, so gym-goers can stay focused while hitting their personal records. Additionally, this unit features onboard controls and an integrated microphone to support crystal-clear calls or speaking to a virtual assistant.
The SUMEE D-422 headphones are an excellent choice for users looking for a versatile headset suited for working out and enjoying a late-night gaming session. This model features Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity and a 33 ft wireless range to keep you feeling free while working up a sweat. Additionally, this model features an audio jack for a wired audio connection for game systems or saving battery life. While the 10-hour battery life isn’t very long, this headset reaches a full charge in only three hours.
In addition to versatile connectivity and an excellent wireless range, the SUMEE D-422 headphones offer a comfortable unit that keeps users from getting distracted while lifting weights or walking a Stairmaster. The over-ear design provides excellent noise isolation and a great soundstage for listening to music or enjoying a weekly podcast. Additionally, this model is perfect for fitness fans on the go, thanks to the folding design that saves space in a workout bag or backpack.
Award: BEST FOR TREADMILLS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This model features a secure fit and a long wire so users can reach their fitness goals while listening to high-energy tunes. The wrapping design and inline talk/pause button give users control over their music or calls while working out.
The Mucro MB-232 headphones are an excellent pick for users looking for a reliable headset that doesn’t come off during an intense workout. The over-ear hook design keeps these headphones secure, while the silicone earbuds block out distractions and keep you in the zone. The ergonomic hook features a 30-degree swivel to ensure a near-universal fit. While this model doesn’t offer Bluetooth connectivity, users will love the long audio cable that won’t tangle or disconnect while you finish a long run.
In addition to a secure fit and noise-isolating silicone earbuds, the Mucro MB-232 headphones deliver high-quality sound to keep users focused on their current goals. The shallow in-ear design of the earbuds mitigates discomfort, and it lets in enough noise to enhance your safety while running outdoors. Additionally, this model is lightweight, and the durable material is skin-friendly, water-resistant, and sweat-resistant. Lastly, the inline talk button lets users take calls or pause the music while moving between workouts.
Award: BEST FOR FITNESS FANATICS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This model features an on-ear design and impressive water resistance so they can keep up during brutal workouts or a cooldown in the pool. Users can stay pumped with a balanced tone and good bass while finishing out a run or lifting session.
The Senso 5228850368 headphones are an excellent pick for users needing a durable wireless headset for intense gym sessions or running outdoors. This headset features a phenomenal soundstage with crisp highs and booming bass to energize you while rounding the final mile of a run. With Bluetooth 5.0 and 360-degree antennas, these headphones offer stable connectivity with minimal interruptions. While the battery life is only eight hours, this headset reaches a full charge in only two hours.
In addition to a quick charging time and high-fidelity sound, the Senso 5228850368 headphones offer an IPX7 waterproof rating, so users can even listen to wireless music while swimming laps. The over-ear design keeps these headphones secure while moving, and the onboard controls keep users in charge of their calls and music. Additionally, the built-in mic offers hands-free calling with crystal-clear voice audio, even while moving outdoors. Lastly, this headset stands up to sweat, dirt, and light falls to deliver music to the most rugged fitness fan.
Award: BEST FOR BIKING
WHY WE LIKE IT: This model offers excellent sound quality and a lightweight hooking design that keeps this pair secure during high-intensity gym sessions. In addition, the inline buttons keep users in charge of their music and calls while biking over the next hill.
The JAAMIRA JR-EM390 headphones are a compelling option for bikers or runners looking for a wired headset that can stay secure while pushing for their personal best. This lightweight headset features an on-ear design that wraps securely over the ear, and users can choose their best fit from the three included ear tip sizes. Additionally, this model provides noise isolation so you can stay focused in a crowded gym. While this model only features an IPX4 waterproof rating, it is good enough to withstand sweat or running through the rain.
In addition to a lightweight design and comfortable ear tips, the JAAMIRA JR-EM390 headphones deliver excellent sound quality thanks to crisp highs and deep bass to accentuate genres like EDM, Hip Hop, and R&B. These translucent headphones have responsive inline controls to adjust music volume or take a phone call during a workout. Lastly, the 3.5mm audio connection ensures high device compatibility from mp3 players to the latest game consoles.
Award: BEST FOR INTENSE GYM SESSIONS
WHY WE LIKE IT: This waterproof headset features high-fidelity sound and excellent onboard controls to deliver a versatile unit for hard gym sessions. Additionally, users will love the on-ear hook design that keeps this headset secure while going hard or taking a quick swim.
The Villain headphones are an excellent pick for users looking for a high-quality headset for working outdoors or lifting hard in the gym. These clip-on on-ear headphones deliver a secure fit, even for active workouts like riding a bike or running the trails. Additionally, this model offers Hi-Fi sound thanks to the aptX technology that delivers crisp highs and booming bass tones. While this model is somewhat heavy for active headphones, they pack phenomenal onboard controls.
In addition to great sound and onboard controls, the Villain headphones feature an IPX7 waterproof rating which means they can hold up to hard workouts or even a recovery session in a hot tub. This headset features a 9-hour playing time at 80% volume, and users can have two hours of listening after only ten minutes of charging a dead battery. Lastly, this model features Bluetooth 5.0 that delivers a stable wireless connection, even during high-intensity workouts.
Over-ear headphones for working out are a specific type of headphones with earcups that completely enclose your ears instead of resting on them or inside your ear canal. The top-rated workout headphones typically feature a snug fit, so they stay in place while you exercise. A pair of headphones like these also often provide active noise cancelation features so you can focus on your reps instead of all the ambient noise in the gym.
When it comes to functionality and form factor, over-ear headphones for working out aren’t that different from other types of headphones. They feature the same internal components and require the same connection to an audio source of some kind to play music and podcasts.
However, a few distinguishing features make these headphones stand out from the crowd. For starters, as their name suggests, they feature an over-ear design, providing passive noise cancelation at a bare minimum. Many models also feature active noise cancelation functionality. The over-ear design remains comfortable while blocking out ambient noise so you can focus on your workouts.
Over-ear workout headphones are also built for hands-free operation, so you don’t have to stop working out to answer a call or skip to the next track. As such, most of these headphones offer a built-in microphone for compatibility with voice assistants, such as Siri, Amazon Alexa, and Google Assistant, as well as for taking phone calls. Typically, these headphones will also offer user-friendly touch controls instead of physical buttons for on-the-fly adjustments.
You’ll find that most of these options are wireless workout headphones, so you don’t have to worry about getting tangled up in cords while running on the treadmill or lifting weights. Many of these options also offer a waterproof rating, so you don’t have to worry about sweat ruining your device.
Over-ear workout headphones work the same way as other types of headphones and speakers. First, you’ll connect your device to an audio source, like a smartphone, music streaming service, or computer. This is either a wired or wireless connection. Then, the source device sends an audio signal to your headphones, which translates it to sound waves that your ears can hear. This process takes place using the headphones’ internal components, such as the driver, coils, and magnets.
All headphones need a power source to produce audio. For wired headphones, this power comes from the audio source device when connected via an audio cable. For wireless headphones, this power comes from the built-in battery.
Working out, especially at the gym, can be hard to focus on. There are a million things to distract you. If you need a solution to keep you focused, a pair of workout headphones is an excellent choice for you. They offer an ergonomic design for better comfort, long-lasting battery life for increased playback time, and a ton of convenient extras, so you don’t have to stop mid-workout to take a call or change the song.
As a general rule of thumb, any good pair of headphones should last you five to ten years. However, there is a wide variety of external factors that can affect that lifespan, either positively or negatively. One of those factors is how you use your headphones.
When you use your headphones to work out, you’re opening the door more often to potential damage, whether through exposure to water or physical damage. As such, you must take care of your headphones while you work out and make sure you purchase a pair with an adjustable headband so you can get a snug fit.
When it comes time for you to purchase the right pair of over-ear headphones for working out, you’ll need to keep a few key considerations in mind. For starters, you’ll want to find a pair of headphones in your price range. Then, you’ll want to start looking at product-specific features and functionality, like sound quality, comfort features, connectivity options, and user controls. Also, don’t forget to consider water-resistant options so you can protect them from sweat.
Audio quality is an important consideration to make for any kind of audio device you purchase. However, it’s a hard measurement to track without actually listening to your headphones before purchasing. This is possible in some cases but not in others.
In general, more expensive headphones will sound better than more affordable headphones. This doesn’t mean budget options are bad. They just won’t give you the level of detailed and immersive sound quality as you’ll get with premium alternatives.
Read customer reviews and test headphones out at your local electronics store to get a feel for the sound quality of the headphones you’re considering.
Over-ear headphones come in either wired or wireless configurations. Both carry their own pros and cons, but wireless headphones are much better for working out than even the greatest wired headphones, which need to connect to a device with a headphone jack. With wireless, you won’t have to worry about getting tangled in cords while you lift weights or do pushups.
However, you’ll need to make sure you understand the limitations of wireless headphones before you buy a pair of them. For starters, how many hours of battery life will you get? Most wireless headphones will offer 10-15 hours of battery life, but you can find some premium options with as much as a 30-hour battery life if you really need it. You won’t want your cans to die in the middle of a workout.
Wireless options also have a limited range, even with the latest Bluetooth 5.0 technology, so you’ll still need to keep your phone near you at the gym. Consider other styles of headphones if they suit your interests as well, such as the best neckband headphones.
Many over-ear headphones now offer noise cancelation technology as a standard feature. However, plenty of options are available today that don’t block out any sound. So, is noise cancelation a must for you while working out?
The answer ultimately depends on your preferences. If you want to be completely immersed in your music without hearing any external sounds, you’ll want to opt for an option with active noise cancelation. If you want to muffle outside noise, something with passive noise cancelation will do.
It’s no secret that you’ll sweat while you work out, but how does that affect your headphones? Sweat can damage the leather and memory foam materials commonly found on your headphones’ earcups. Even worse, it can sometimes make its way inside of your headphones and damage internal components.
This is why it’s important to consider workout headphones with some level of water resistance, especially if you like outdoor workouts. Electronics follow the Ingress Protection, or IP, rating system.
Look for the letters IP followed by two numbers. The first number tells you how well the headphones are protected against dust and the second number does the same for water. Higher numbers mean better protection. Your workout headphones should offer a minimum of an IPX4 water resistance rating.
Workout headphones offer a wide range of additional features and functionalities to consider. The availability of these features varies depending on the specific brand and model you purchase. Some of these extra considerations to make include: