I’m admittedly not great with tech. I wouldn’t class myself as an early adopter of anything even remotely related to technology.
Gym headphones for me have always been wired affairs, brand agnostic (usually free with a device) and short on lifespan. I decided to upgrade to some wireless headphones after losing my temper too often with wired ones.
Ryme Audio (http://www.rymeaudio.co.uk/) sent me a set of ProSport headphones recently, so I am going to do a little review of how they’ve treated me so far.
What Makes a Great Pair of Headphones For Working Out ?
For me it’s all about 2 core elements that make headphones ideal for gym sessions, comfort and how secure they are in my ear and whether or not they are sweatproof.
There is nothing worse than working out and subconsciously knowing at any moment your headphones can drop out, completely ruining your flow.
I’ve been testing some Sony wf-1000xm3 headphones in the gym as well but I’ve not quite adjusted myself to the fitting as you need to replace the rubber bud component depending upon your ear size, which means they are much more prone to falling out.
Also, spending time after your session making sure the headphones are not sweat damaged just adds unnecessary stress. Particularly if they are very expensive, each session becomes a risky affair.
So the Ryme Audio headphones already passed the comfort test as they have hooks over the ear, now I needed to put them to the test to make sure they are actually sweatproof and of course if the sound quality is good enough to push my personal bests.
First of all these are very simple to setup, it’s literally take them out of the neat little wireless charger case, pop them in your ear, search for Bluetooth devices near you, connect, done.
This is a dream for me as I’m not the most technologically savvy person. It also tells you how much battery is left on the front of the case, which some headphones don’t.
I’ve been using the headphones during all my sessions, all which have revolved around heavy compound lifts, not once have I experienced even the slightest bit of movement.
As they headphones are very light, you won’t notice them in your ear at all, again another bonus.
Volume features as you would expect are simple to use, just locate the volume bar on the side of the headphones and pump or down (plus or minus).
If, like me, you like to avoid touching your phone during a workout then you can switch song by just holding down the volume buttons for half a second or so.
I’ve not ran these low enough on battery to test this but you should, according the instructions get around 4 hours of play out of them.
I found that, as they charge in the case and you naturally store them in the case, you never really need to be concerned about battery levels as the case charges them.
The adjustable ear hooks are very pliable so you can easily arrange around your ears without it being too fiddly or being overly concerned that you are breaking them.
Heavy deadlifts, heavy squats, heavy bench, pull ups, dips. The exercises where I typically found my other headphones would get a little loose, I had no problem with the ProSport headphones.
If you’ve seen any training footage of me in the gym, part of my pre-lift routine is to make sure my headphones are securely in place before I commence the lift. What was strange is that I didn’t need to do this at all with the ProSport headphones, so I would initiate my lifting routine and have to force myself from not touching my headphones as I didn’t need to.
This for me is great, it’s not something I want to be worrying about before a big lift.
Like I said previously, as they are light and the buds are made of silicone, you barely even notice these headphones are in your ear.
Another benefit is because you don’t need to ram these into your ear, the buds are not covered in ear wax. Sounds gross but it’s true, these sit easily into your ears and the hooks mean you don’t have to force them uncomfortably deep.
These are also passively noise cancelling, now at first, I wasn’t 100% sure on this because I could still hear the faint sound of Smooth Radio playing in the gym as I put them in. As silly as it sounds, you just need to turn your volume up over I’d say 60% before they completely cancel out external noise.
These don’t have a noise cancelling setting that creates that kind of suction sensation like some more expensive headphones but due to their fit and sound quality you don’t really need it, just put the volume up and it immediately cancels out whatever rubbish is usually playing in the gym.
Just in case you’re concerned, you don’t need to put the volume up to ear splitting levels to achieve this noise cancelling effect, above 60% I’d say is enough.
Thankfully it also cancels out the sound of chattering groups of people who are not training hard enough.
I’ve not once been concerned with these cutting out because of the sweat, I’ve not even really needed to wipe them down because of residing sweat on the headphones.
I’m literally able to take them off and pop them straight back into the wireless case.
I’ve not tested them outside in the rain yet, I’m a little hesitant to do that as in my mind electronics and water don’t mix but I’m very certain they would be absolutely fine.
Perhaps don’t go swimming with them on, though.
Value For Money
The ProSport headphones currently cost £49.99, down from £120 as they are currently on sale, which in my mind is absolute bargain, especially when you consider what else is on the market.
When you consider that my Sony headphones cost me £150, Airpods cost £159 and the Jabra 65T cost £99.99, you can’t really go wrong.
My Sony headphones are perfect for sitting at a desk, or sitting in a coffee shop trying to get a bit of silence, but they are quite delicate and not designed for rigorous exercise, I would actually be more worried about breaking my headphones in the gym instead of focusing on lifting heavy weight. Same applies to the AirPods.
When (at their current price) the ProSport headphones are 1/3 of the price, provide peace of mind knowing they won’t break as they offer great comfort & fit, very good audio quality, simple to use and are sweatproof, you can’t really go wrong.
So I’ve trialled using the ProSport Headphones for a few weeks now and I must say, they have really grown on me.
I looked at the price and thought they couldn’t possibly rival some of the more established brands, my own biases stood in the way, like most you just assume that if something is more expensive it must be better, right? Wrong.
For me the over-arching benefits of using the ProSport Headphones have been how securely they sit in your ears, I’ve literally had 0 issues trying to re-correct.
My training has been super intense these last few weeks and having headphones that don’t budge in the slightest just brings absolute peace of mind, particularly when you are at absolute depth during a heavy squat.
And even if they did fall out (which they won’t) these are clearly very durable, I don’t want to test this notion but I’d guarantee they would still work if someone accidently stood on them, which is possible reality in the gym.
My sessions usually take (on average) around 2 hours, my ears haven’t needed a break from the snug fit or the level of sound. Because the headphones don’t need to be burrowed so deep into your ear cavity they actually feel very unobtrusive.
Once you turn the sound up to over 60% or so, you can’t hear any external noise (unless someone is shouting at you) so they deliver on the noise cancelling aspect without deafening you. Perfect really to block out the sound of ABBA playing in the gym whilst you try and hit a deadlift PR.
Finally, if you’re a bit of a donkey when it comes to tech then these are ideal given their complete simplicity when it comes to the setup. It’s quite literally plug and play with these bad boys, no weekly updates, no faffing around with sitting vs walking settings or anything like that.
So there you go, if you’re looking for a set of headphones that you can comfortably take into the gym without having to worry about breaking whilst delivering on sound quality then the Ryme Audio ProSport Headphones will tick all of those boxes.