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How To Choose The Best Headphones For Running

Running is a fantastic hobby, and while good running shoes and sweat-wicking workout gear are important to support your body – music is often key to supporting your motivation.
There have been numerous studies on how music can positively impact your performance, so it’s no surprise that the majority of runners prefer to listen to their favourite tunes while exercising. Or if not music, some runners listen to a podcast.
That’s why it’s important to find the best running headphones to help you get the most out of your runs.

Key things to consider when choosing running headphones

If you’re new to running or are looking to upgrade your running headphones, it pays to do a little research before making a purchase.

Here are the top things to consider when choosing running headphones.


The first and arguably most important thing to consider in running headphones is their fit.

For some people, in-ear headphones may not stay in the ears without the help of ear hooks, which loop over the ear and help the buds to stay in place, even when you're moving around. These are most common in specifically designed Sports Headphones.

Of course, running headphones must also be comfortable so you can wear them day after day without them rubbing.

Sound quality

Sound quality is important in running headphones, as they will need to perform well enough to play your favourite music or podcasts over the sound of the noisy outdoors or a treadmill.

It can be hard to know what sounds good without trialling every model, but one quick check is to look for earphones that have dual drivers. This means there are two tiny speakers in each earbud, one that deals with bass and low even frequencies, and one that deals with mid and high range frequencies.

This provides better sound clarity and accuracy, for a higher quality sound overall.


Durability is important in any headphones, but especially in something that will have to stand up to regular wear and tear.

For any headphones or technology, one of the weakest points is the cord. This can get tangled, bent, and pulled, and therefore break down much more quickly. By investing in wireless headphones for running, you are removing the main feature that will wear down quickly, which can help to ensure your earphones last for longer.

Aside from cords, look for headphones that come with a sturdy case. While your earphones are not in much danger of damage during wear, they are more vulnerable when you aren’t using them, as they could get squashed or broken if they are loose in your bag or pocket.

Therefore, a good case will help to keep them safe.


Water resistance is highly important for running headphones, as most runners will either knowingly run in the rain, or will get caught in a rain shower sooner or later.

For this, look for its water and dust resistance rating. It will look something like ‘IP57’.

IP stands for Ingress Protection, and the first digit stands for how well it is protected against dust (from 0 to 6), and the second digit stands for how well it is protected against water (from 0 to 8). If there is an X in one of these spaces, such as IPX7, then that quality is untested.

Anything with a rating of IPX4 and above is good for running, as it means that it can resist water splashes. However, a rating of IPX7 is really the gold standard for running headphones, as it means they could be submerged in water for up to 30 minutes without being damaged.

Battery health

Finally, battery health is important for runners, especially for long-distance runners.

You do not want to have to recharge your headphones after every single run, nor do you want them to run out of battery long before your legs do.

Look for long battery life - eight hours or so is usually plenty, so you can charge them once per week.

Additionally, headphones with a short charging time (two hours or less) can be handy when you need to charge them in a hurry.

The best JBL headphones for running

JBL Australia stocks a wide range of running headphones, ensuring there’s a pair of headphones ready to support you in your running and exercise goals. Here are three of our most popular pairs.

JBL Endurance Race TWS

The JBL Endurance Race TWS wireless running headphones feature a deep bass sound for anyone who loves powerful music fuelling their runs. They have a massive 30 hours of battery life for minimal charging, an IP67 rating to resist both water and dust, and a microphone so you can make and hold calls during your workouts.

JBL Endurance Race TWS
Waterproof true wireless active sport earbuds
A$ 119.95 each

JBL Endurance Jump

The JBL Endurance Jump headphones are designed for comfort and endurance. They have an eight-hour battery life with a fast charge of two hours and come with a Power Hook that keeps them in place when you’re running. The Power Hook design also automatically switches them off when you remove them, making them easy to control or pause as you need.

They also feature touch controls and an IPX7 water resistance rating.

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