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What is the best way to choose waterproof sports headphones? Our top 6

You’ve embraced the idea of sports headphones, but which ones should you choose? Do you need to consider water resistance for all activities? Read this article to find out what to look for when equipping yourself and discover the top 6 waterproof sports headphones. Your next sessions will be filled with music!

Do you need waterproof headphones for all physical activities?

Headphones or earbuds, wired or wireless… There are many questions to ask when choosing how you will listen to the songs that motivate you during your workouts. One question that caught our attention was whether the waterproof rating of the headphones should be taken into account, regardless of your activity.
Swimming, diving, triathlons, surfing, aqua aerobics, snorkelling and so on. Water sports obviously require waterproof headphones that can be submerged at certain depths.
When running in the rain, cycling or hiking, splash-proof headphones are also essential.
Even for indoor sports, waterproof sports headphones are an asset: they can sit alongside your water bottle in your gym bag or your towel after an intense HIIT session.
Focus on IP to understand everything about the water resistance of your sports equipment.

Understanding the waterproof ratings of sports headphones

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The waterproof rating of the headphones is IP (this stands for ingress protection), which is a standardised European norm. The presence of this rating guarantees that the product has been subjected to independent testing. The higher the IP rating, the more resistant the headphones are to moisture and dust:
The first number refers to the resistance to dust and solid particle intrusion and ranges from 0 to 6 (IP0X to IP6X). If you ride a BMX bike on dusty terrain, for example, you should opt for IP6X sports headphones. If the product has an X as the first number, it has simply not been tested for dust.
The second number corresponds to the water resistance:
IPX0: no protection against water
IPX1: designed to withstand vertical drops of water
IPX2: designed to withstand falling water at an angle of 0 to 15°
IPX3: designed to withstand splashing water up to an angle of 60°
IPX4: designed to withstand splashing water from all directions
IPX5: designed to withstand a low-pressure water jet
IPX6: designed to withstand an intense water jet even at high pressure
IPX6K: extreme resistance, even at high pressure
IPX7: can be submerged underwater up to 1 metre for 30 minutes
IPX8: earphones can be immersed in water to a depth of more than 1 metre (maximum depth is specified for each model)
IPX9K: rarely used, this rating ensures resistance to a high-pressure, high-temperature water jet, even at close range
Some headphones have a dual IP rating, certifying, for example, that they can both be immersed in water and withstand splashing.

Top 6 waterproof sports headphones

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Here are 6 models of waterproof headphones on the market to help you make your choice:
The waterproof wireless headphones with the best sound quality: the PowerBeats Pro, with 9 hours of listening time, a hook system that will stay on in any position, powerful sound, good isolation from outside noise and an IPX4 rating.
The most resistant waterproof sports headphones for underwater use: the OpenSwim bone conduction MP3 headphones can be submerged up to 2 metres, with an IP68 rating.
The best headphones for outdoor sports: Bose Sport Earbuds offer Bose sound quality with water protection. With an IPX4 rating, they’re perfect for hiking, biking or running in the rain. They’re also ergonomic and have enough battery life to get you through a marathon!
Lightweight, waterproof sports headphones for HIIT: with the Jaybird Vista wireless headphones, which are IPX7 rated, you can jump, run and sweat freely! They’ll follow your every move and can even forgive the occasional fall.
The cheapest waterproof earphones: the JLab Go Air, with their IP44 rating, offer an excellent compromise for indoor and outdoor use.
Waterproof sports headphones for a distraction-free session: with the Apple Airpods Pro headphones, you can choose to be completely isolated from ambient noise and disable the option when running in the street for safety. They are IPX4 rated.
To delve further and personalise your music training experience, you can also read our article “Which headphones for which sporting activity?”

Check out our Fitness & Training page for more advice.

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