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Earbuds vs Headphones at The Gym

* Each have their pros and cons
* Figure out which one will be better for you and your workout
* Team Earbuds or Team Headphones?

Anyone who loves blasting their music while they’re working on their pump will advocate for either earbuds or headphones. However, you won’t find many people who will advocate for both which creates a clear divide; Team Earbuds and Team Headphones.  Each product has their own benefits as well as areas where they fall short. You have to decide which will work better for you and your style of workouts. We put together a list of pros and cons for both headphones and earbuds that will help you decide.


Headphones can come with or without a cord just like earbuds. They also make them in two different styles; over the ear or on the ear. They fit snug to your head with a band connecting each ear piece that runs over the top of your scalp.


Over the ear headphones offer a superior sound because they occupy the area just outside your ear. This runs in stark contrast to sitting inside your ear canal like earbuds. This makes the sound feel fuller and it helps block out any other ambient noises. If you’re someone who loves to get in his zone and ignore absolutely everyone and everything else going on at the gym, over the ear headphones might be for you. On the ear headphones lose some the ambient noise blockage, but some guys like to be aware and hear whats going on around them, so it comes down to personal preference.

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On the flip side, headphones that go over your whole ear can trap sweat around your ear. Your head releases the most heat of any body part, so when tight fitting headphones are suctioned over your ears, they can get very sweaty and uncomfortable. On top of this, when you wear headphones you’ll also have to sacrifice your hair or wear a hat due to the tight fitting band. If you’re trying to impress a girl at the gym, headphone hair isn’t the way to go and these might not be the best bet.

Our Pick

The JBL E45BT On-Ear Wireless Headphoness offer a great sound and go on your ears rather than over your ears. This pair strikes the perfect balance, providing immersive sound without completely cutting you off from the world around you.

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Image courtesy of Amazon



Earbuds will come with a cord more times than not, but now they have bluetooth earbuds which only have the two speakers. They also have earbuds with no cords at all wherein each earbud links to your bluetooth device independently. Other variations lie in the ear pieces’ shapes and sizes. Sometimes they will be sphere shaped and other times they have been more expertly crafted to fit in your ear canal.


Earbuds that come with the G-shaped ear pieces stay in your ear really well. You can go on a run, do box jumps, jump rope, or play a game of basketball with them and have full confidence that they won’t fall out. This is the most important thing to me when I workout. The more typically sphere-shaped earbuds tend to fall out too easily and don’t allow for fast movements because they’ll fall off. Earbuds aren’t bulky in this way and with the right ear pieces, they’ll be sure to stay in your ear.


Most earbuds come with cords and yes, the world is becoming more and more wireless everyday. Cords can be annoying when your trying to workout as they can get caught on equipment and get ripped out of your ear. For this reason, most of the more reasonably priced pairs come with cords. They’re are plenty of cordless earbud options out there, but then battery becomes an issue. While the cords can be more cumbersome, at least they won’t die on you halfway through a deadlift.

Our Pick

Bose SoundSport In-Ear Earbuds are very reliable and have the type of ear piece that will not fall out of your ears during your more intense workouts. This pair of earbuds is not wireless because we think it’s not worth worrying about keeping it charged everyday. Just tuck that pesky cord inside your shirt and focus on your workout.

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Image Courtesy Amazon