Best gym headphones 2022: Top in-ear and over-ear models reviewed

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o matter the genre of music, the bestgym headphones can provide you with some extra motivation to get through your session.

There’s nothing quite like tuning out of the hustle and bustle of a busy gym and tuning in to your workout – and a pair of quality headphones can help you get in the endorphins-pumping zone. But what makes the best gym headphones stand out from the rest?

According to a Bose spokesperson, there are three key features. This includes: a secure fit, a sweat and water resistant design, and of course, great sound quality to help keep you motivated to move.

The Bose spokesperson explains: “Music has the power to motivate, whether you’re trying to hit a new 5K PB on the treadmill or power through one more rep, but you don’t always want to have to blast it at top volume to hear all parts of the song.”

He also highlights features that you should pay close attention to: “Sweat and water resistance are crucial when working out, so look out for moisture resistance and IPX ratings when choosing your headphones”.

Along with the sound quality and sweat resistant design, we’d also suggest considering:

The type

Nowadays there’s a wide and varying variety of headphones designs to pick from. But for a workout, the general consensus seems to prefer in-ear buds. As their name suggests, earbuds sit securely in your ear (this could be at the front of your ear canal or inside the ear canal), placing the music as close to your drum as possible. You can also get wireless ear-buds or with a cable. And then there’s over-ear headphones to weigh up. These have a headband which sits on your head while the cups of the headphones cover your ears.

Battery life

There’s nothing like your headphones dying on you to kill any motivation to move. Today, many of the best gym headphones are built with battery life in mind and can last anywhere between sex to 12 hours of playback time and more if you carry the compact charging case that many earbuds come with.

Noise cancellation

Prefer to drown out the rest of the gym? Some headphones come with Active Noise Cancellation, which use noise cancelling speakers to limit how much background noise you can hear.

To help you find the best gym headphones, we put numerous pairs to the test, checking out the sound quality, the fit, the features and the overall look and feel of the earphones while getting a sweat on.

Apple AirPods (3rd generation)

Apple

If you’re a fan of Apple and use the brand’s electrical offerings, there’s much to love about the lauded AirPods.

Firstly, the third edition comes with an extended battery life which gives you up to six hours of listening time, while the small, pocket-friendly charging case gives you up to 30 hours of total listening. This means your headphones won’t run out of juice while you’re trying to get your pump on. And even if they do, simply pop them in the case for five minutes while you’re taking a breather and they’ll be good to go before you can say HIIT. They’re also water and sweat resistant and did we also mention the second-to-none sound quality and easy to sync set up? The list of positives goes on (and on).

Beats Fit Pro

Beats

If there’s one brand that knows how to hone in on sound quality, it’s Beats by Dr. Dre. And one of the best ways to ensure sound quality is high up on the list? To ensure the fit is spot on. One of the most impressive elements about the Beats Fit Pro earphones is that they come with three ear tip options to ensure your earphones are nothing but snug. Plus, you can twist the earbud back and tuck the wing tip into your upper ear for an even cosier feel. This means you can spend less time worrying about whether your headphones are going to fall out of your ear and more time concentrating on perfecting your form. And lunge.

Jabra Elite 7 Actives

Jabra

Noise cancellation? Tick. A powerful music experience which you can tailor to your motivational needs? Tick. Stands up to repping, running and racing? Tick. Coming in a trio of colours including navy, green and black, the Jabra Elite 7 Actives are also designed with a super secure fit, thanks to the label’s trademarked ShakeGrip technology. But don’t just take our word for it.

To make sure these buds aren’t moving, the designers behind the headphones asked professional Trickers Alex Omidvar and Kyle Skelly to flip their way through a workout. The result? Even upside down these Jabra Elite 7 Actives weren’t budging. If they’re staying put even when you’re 180 degrees the wrong way round, they’re most certainly good enough when your feet are on the ground tackling a HIIT, clocking up a treadmill run or powering through a deadlift.

Google Pixel Buds Pro

Google

At up to 31 hours of listening time, the Google Pixel Buds Pro has one of the longest playback times in this lineup. Much like many of the other headphones in this guide, the Google Pixel Buds Pro comes with active noise cancellation thanks to the brand’s signature Silent Seal. This blocks out the outside chatter meaning you can find your flow and get your head fully in the game. The fit has really been considered with these offerings. So much so, these earbuds adapt to you as they have a moldable design that adapts to your ear shape. We also liked the four different colours these buds come in, ranging from a yellowy-green lemongrass to deep and dark charcoal.

JLab GO Air Sports

JLAB

You don’t have to spend a fortune to enjoy good quality sound while pumping iron. And the wireless JLab GO Air Sports earbuds prove it. Along with being water and sweat resistant, the lightweight buds, which are designed with an ergonomic ear-hook, have an up to nine metres wireless range. This makes them ideal for when you’re moving around the gym, putting weights away properly and shifting from one machine to another.

The GO Air Sports can pair with iOS and Android and they also stand up to any playback life of other headphones listed in this guide, with eight hours of charge and 24 more from the small case. Priced at under £30? This is a true gym must-have.

Sony WF-SP800N

Sony

If you’re looking to break a real sweat during your sessions, Sony’s WF-SP800N will soon become your favourite gym bud. The wireless headphones are designed for sports and as such are splash proof, sweat proof and even wash proof thanks to their pretty impressive IP55 rating. Along with this rating making them dust resistant, it also means you can give them a quick clean to keep them fresh.

And there’s even more reasons to love them. They come with noise cancelling and have up to 18 hours of listening time if both the headphones and case are fully charged. And if you turn noise cancelling off, you can enjoy up to 26 hours of quality-sounding music at your disposal thanks to Sony’s EXTRA BASS.

Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds

Skullcandy

Want to really level up your workout? With 44 hours of complete battery life, sweat and water resistance and fitted with voice control, Skullcandy’s Push Active True Wireless Earbuds will keep going for as long as you do. The fit-for-purpose headphones come in three different colours ranging from dark blue/green, light grey/blue and black/orange. You can even share audio with your gym bud as you race, row or run. You need not even think twice about these hands-free headphones leaving your side (or ears) thanks to the handy over-the-ear fit. But if you do misplace them, use Skullcandy’s Tile tech to track your headphone’s last known location. This is next-level gym tech you won’t want to miss out on.

Bose Sport Earbuds

Bose

Pump up the volume (and the intensity of your workout) with Bose’s Sport Earbuds. The sweat and weather resistant buds have an acclaimed lifelike sound thanks to their patented acoustic port design and are made for those who like to crank the sound all the way up. This means these earbuds are spot-on for those who like to get their head into the zone and use their music to motivate them, rep after rep – whether you’re taking on a challenge outside or shifting some weights inside.

One problem with earbuds is that if they don’t fit properly, they’re more than likely to drop out, putting a halt on your session. But these Bose Sport Earbuds come with the brand’s StayHear Max tips that result in a super secure and snug bud that has you tuned in for up to five hours.

Jam Live Fast Workout Earphones

Jam

If you’re hunting for a pair of earphones that you can keep stashed away in your gym bag, consider Jam Live Fast Workout Earphones. The earphones are IP67 rated, meaning if you plan on blasting through a sweaty session and not stopping until you’ve completed it, these workout essentials will stand up to the sweaty challenge.

But there’s more. They have a 12 hour battery life, a 10 metre Bluetooth range and will set you back less than £40. Although these earphones are considered to be wireless, they do come with an adjustable cord for a super snug and to optimise the fit. They are specifically designed for activity, whether you’re doing a speedy treadmill run or blasting through a HIIT session.

Adidas Sport RPD-01

Adidas

These are the sportswear giant’s third set of headphones to drop onto the market and with an affordable price of £69.99, we think they’re the best ones yet. The long 12-hour battery life means it can stand up to just about any adventure you have in mind, while the easy-to-use side buttons allow you to hit skip, adjust the volume and answer calls meaning you never have to press pause on your workout session. Plus, the Adidas Sport RPD-01 is built with comfort in mind. We’re talking ergonomic ear tips and a super supportive neckband.

Verdict

For any Apple user, the 3rd generation AirPods pip all other headphones to the post in this line up. The easy-to-sync pods are yet to run out of charge on us mid-way through a workout and the tech giants have balanced these features with super clear sound quality.