The long-running Jabra Elite Active 75t (opens in new tab) is discontinued, but renewed models are available through online retailers including Amazon (opens in new tab). If you do manage to track these stellar earbuds down, you'll be rewarded with an all-round performer that hits every mark for active lifestyle wearers. The great fit during our tests meant that they didn't move at all while we were working out, and the IP57 durability rating provided effective protection from dust and sweat. Battery life is rated at 7.5 hours per charge, with 28 hours from the charging case, and lived up to expectations. These are just some of the many reasons why the Jabra took the top spot of this buying guide for so long, and are still worth tracking down.
As this roundup demonstrates, the best sport headphones sector has shifted over the last year or so, and the best designs for active lifestyles right now are lightweight in-ear wireless earbuds rather than bulky over-ear headphone designs.
Many will appreciate the benefit listening to music or a podcast can have on their exercise routine. All the models here stayed snug and secure during our strenuous workout tests, are water and sweat resistance, and some even have fitness tracking features built in.
This list demonstrates the value of selecting the most appropriate model for those with active lifestyles. Don't forget, you'll find lots more info in our in-depth standalone reviews, covering design and comfort, features, ANC performance (where applicable), battery life, and sound quality across all kinds of media, as well as how well they handle calls. Just follow the link at the end of each product summary or tap the product name next to the star rating to discover everything you need to know about the best wireless earbuds available to buy today.
To find your ideal active lifestyle partner, read on for our pick of the best sport headphones you can buy right now.
The best sport headphones you can buy right now
Why you can trust Tom's Guide Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.
Best sports headphones overall
Editor's note: As one of the most popular models, the Beats Fit Pro are regularly discounted at online retailers. Bookmark our best headphones deals page to keep track of the latest bargains.
Picture most of the AirPods Pro’s features packaged in the Beats Studio Buds design, but with integrated wingtips, and you get the phenomenal Fit Pro. These sporty in-ear buds offer effective active noise cancellation and even better sound, powered by a new transducer that balances audio superbly. Spatial audio comes part of the package, bringing 3D sound to compatible songs that are available on Apple Music. The wingtips are great for stabilizing fit when performing lateral-heavy exercises. We also appreciate the numerous features that come tied to the H1 chip, including automatic switching between Apple devices, “Hey Siri” voice activation, and FindMy to easily locate misplaced buds.
It’s a shame that Android users don’t get many of the same software perks, due to the lack of H1 support and a limited companion app. At least they can enjoy the true hallmarks like ANC and Spatial Audio.
Read our full Beats Fit Pro review.
Best for iPhone users(opens in new tab)
Do you like the convenience of Apple's AirPods earbuds, but aren't enamored with their design? Apple's Beats by Dre brand offers an alternative with the sporty Powerbeats Pro. The wire-free, sweat-resistant earbuds hook around the ear for stability and use Apple's H1 chip (also found in Apple's AirPods Pro) for seamless integration with iPhones, but their all-black, wrap-around design makes them less noticeable. Updating to iOS 14 gives exercisers the luxury of automatic switching to other iDevices, should they prefer to jump from their iPhone to MacBook Pro while working out from home.
Controls on both buds let you change tracks and volume, summon Siri, and take phone calls. We also found that the Powerbeats Pro delivered well-balanced audio — no bass explosion here, as with other Beats products. With more than 24 hours of battery life (9 hours in the buds and 18 in the somewhat thick charging case), these earbuds are a no-brainer purchase for those who are looking for a set of the best sport headphones that will go the distance. While we're fans of the original lineup, the company's new vibrantly colorful models (glacier blue, cloud pink, lava red, and spring yellow) are even better.
Read our full Powerbeats Pro earbuds review.
Best bone conduction sports headphones
Bone-conduction headphones work by vibrating the sound output through your cheekbones, leaving your ears open at the cost of audio quality. The Shokz OpenRun Pro therefore doesn't sound as good as the wireless earbuds on this list, but in some ways it's even more practical for sports usage — and for the record, it doesn't sound bad, at least by the usual bone-conduction standards.
The OpenRun Pro offer one of the comfiest, most secure fits of any sports headphones, even with a lack of adjustability. And the open-ear design will be especially suitable for running and cycling, as you'll be able to listen out for traffic and pedestrians without needing to take out an earbud or manually engage an ambient listening mode.
Read our full Shokz OpenRun Pro review.
Best workout-friendly AirPods(opens in new tab)
Let's be clear, the AirPods Pro 2 aren't aimed at exercising. Apple sells a fitness-centric alternative called the Beats Fit Pro (ranked top in this roundup) — essentially a sportier version of the AirPods Pro with nearly the same features and sturdier aesthetics. But no matter, there are still millions of iPhone owners working out at the gym or running on an outdoor trail with a pair of Apple’s ANC buds lodged into their ears. And with good reason. (Here's what happened when we tried running with the AirPods Pro 2.)
As with Apple's original ANC buds, the AirPods Pro 2 are sweat and water resistance to IPX4, but slippage has been improved to feel more secure whether you're on a run or working out, plus Apple’s Ear Tip Fit Test helps achieve optimal fit. Battery life has been increased to offer 6 hours on a single charge from the earbuds and a further 30 hours from the wireless charging case. Noise cancellation and Transparency mode have been further enhanced, and the AirPods Pro 2 are among the best ANC performers we’ve seen so far and an effective active lifestyle companion.
Read the full Apple AirPods Pro 2 review.
Best workout and running earbuds under $100
The JLab Epic Air Sport ANC delivers the best sound quality of any JLab wireless buds and very impressive battery life. We got 9.5 hours out of a single charge, enough for a full week’s workouts even without the charging case.
As the name suggests, this affordable pair of sports headphones also provides you with active noise cancellation. You should be careful using this when out on runs, as it can mask the sound of oncoming traffic and pedestrians, but for the most part ANC is ideal for shutting out nearby noise and letting you focus on your workout. And, if you do need to hear the outside world, you can always active the pass-through transparency mode.
Read our full JLab Epic Air Sport ANC review.
Available in the U.S. only (for now), the JLab Epic Air Sport ANC (2nd Gen) are suitable for brand enthusiasts seeking an upgrade, and budget-conscious exercisers that need reliable buds to get through intense workouts. Overall battery life remains remarkably good, and means you can use them for plenty of gym sessions and comfortably leave them in your gym bag before they need a recharge.
JLab's lively sound and a strong transparency mode are preserved. Inclusions like Tile integration and wireless charging are greatly appreciated as well. The only setback is that ANC performance as well as call quality and comfort has fallen behind market leaders, but you can only ask for so much when considering the $99 price point.
Read our full JLab Epic Air Sport ANC (2nd Gen) review.
We were always impressed by how the old PowerBuds managed to fit a heart rate sensor into a pair of true wireless earbuds. The PowerBuds Pro, however, makes its predecessor look like a toy. In addition to heart rate monitoring it can also track your steps and distance, ideal for runs or bike rides, and can even detect if you're sitting in a way that will hurt your spine.
The fit is looser than most dedicated sport earbuds, but in fairness Amazfit has crammed an awful lot of tech into the PowerBuds Pro. It's also gained ANC (with a transparency mode for safer outdoor runs) and can interface with a range of health-tracking apps, including Runtastic, RunKeeper and MapMyRun.
Read our full Amazfit PowerBuds Pro review.
The latest release in Jabra’s revamped line of wireless earbuds is a promising one filled with lots of customization and long battery life. Unique features like MySound automatically fine-tune the EQ and balance out audio, while Personalize ANC determines the best noise suppression for your hearing. Both help to improve overall sound quality. Access to the Jabra Sound+ app gives you other ways to tweak the soundstage, either selecting from a variety of well-engineered presets or creating your own sound profile by manually adjusting the frequency levels. Up to 9 hours of battery life with ANC on is great. It’s also great that the buds come IP57-rated for sweat and waterproof protection.
Some might find that the Elite 7 Active’s ANC isn’t up to par with other models like the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds or the AirPods Pro, but it’s sufficient for keeping exercisers focused on their gains during intense workouts.
Read our full Jabra Elite 7 Active review.
Bose’s latest release is a sportier version of the popular QuietComfort Earbuds, minus the listening modes and massive design. They are lighter and smaller than their noise-cancelling sibling, come with water-resistant protection (IPX4), and have a variety of tips bundled to accommodate different ear shapes. The low end has been toned down from the SoundSport Free, which can be a positive or negative, depending on your sonic preference. However, music lovers will appreciate the punchy bass and nice detail these buds deliver. Connectivity is also a highlight with Bluetooth 5.1 at the forefront; pairing is seamless, and wireless range is higher than advertised (est. 40 feet).
Fitness fanatics looking to use the Sport Earbuds daily will need to keep their eyes on the battery levels since the buds and charging case do not hold the longest playtimes. There aren’t many features to work with in the Bose Connect app either.
Read our full Bose Sport Earbuds review.
How to choose the best sport headphones for you
5 things to consider when deciding on the best sport headphones for you
With so many wireless earbud options to choose from, you may find it difficult to settle on one. There are several factors to weigh up, and which one is most important depends on personal preference. Follow out list of considerations to factor in when choosing the best wireless earbuds for you.
1. Durability: The best sport headphones offer some form of water or sweat-resistant protection. Some might say they can withstand water and sweat, and some are IP-certified. If you want your headphones to be protected, make sure you look for designs with at least an IPX4 (or higher) rating.
2. Design: You'll also want to look at the design of the headphones and consider how you want to wear them while working out. They should not only be easy to wear, but also stay on your head without the need for constant readjustment. For earbuds, look at how many ear inserts and wings the pair comes with, to give you the best fit option. Some people may prefer over-ear or on-ear headphones because they tend to do a better job of blocking noise, but some prefer earbuds for their secure fit and lightweight portability.
For headphones with cables, make sure to check for an inline remote, which will let you easily control your music without pulling out your smartphone. Completely wireless fitness earbuds allow you to control your music with physical buttons or tap gestures on the earpiece rather than a remote. Some headphones are device-specific; make sure you get a pair that's fully compatible with Android and iOS.
3. Battery life: If you're considering wireless sport headphones, make sure they have the endurance you need. Some people need headphones with only 6 to 8 hours of battery life to last through a week of workouts, while others might want a device with extended longevity to get through long runs, bike rides, and hikes.
4. Accessories: It's disappointing spending money on a new pair of wireless earbuds only to find that you need to buy the accessories separately. Any models that come with a carrying case, charging cable, user guide, and extra ear cups or tips are solid purchases.
5. Pricing considerations: Obviously, price is a big consideration when looking for the best headphones. Although there are always exceptions, big-name brands will typically command a bit extra, but generally speaking, the less you spend on a pair of headphones the greater the chance that sound and features will be compromised. Going for a budget option isn't always the best choice, as any money you save on your purchase won't do you much good if you're constantly needing to recharge your audio gear, or the sound quality is poor.
As the saying goes: timing is everything; and right now many of our favorite models are discounted at online retailers, meaning you can bag a bargain for even less. Bookmark our headphone deals pages to keep track of the latest discounts.
How we test the best sport headphones and earbuds
The best reviews criteria carried out by audio experts
With more than 30 years experience in testing and reviewing consumer audio products for all kinds of media outlets and big-name brands around the world, the Tom's Guide audio team follows a rigorous test regime when it comes to determining the best products for recommendation in our buying guides.
When creating our list of the best sport headphones, Tom’s Guide tests every model to see how they stand up to vigorous workouts, evaluating both how securely they fit during exercises and how well they handle ambient sound (e.g. noise at the gym, oncoming traffic). Our reviewers also test every feature for app-enabled headphones, along with ease of setup.
During the testing phase, each pair of headphones is worn for 2 hours at a time throughout the course of a week. On occasion, we’ll perform further testing when comparing top-rated and popular models for our face-off features.
To determine sound quality, our reviewer evaluates comfort and fit, ease of use, and audio. We test sound by listening to tracks across different music genres, including hip-hop, rock, jazz, classical, and pop. Volume, clarity, and fullness of sound are taken into consideration in our ratings.
Find out what we listen for during our testing process and how to get the best headphone sound for you.
Star ratings explained:
We evaluate earbuds based on a five-point system (1 = worst, 5 = best). If a product hits nearly every mark, it’s awarded a coveted Recommended badge, while our Best Value award speaks for itself. Only products with truly exceptional performance across the board are awarded an Editor's Choice badge.
For more information, check out our how we test page for Tom's Guide.
Contributions from: Alex Bracetti, Nick Pino
More from Tom's Guide
Find out why our phones editor prefers the Beats Fit Pro earbuds to the AirPods Pro 2 (opens in new tab).
Next: Discover what our reviewer made of the AirPods Pro 2 for running, and don't forget to also check out the best running headphones and our best noise-cancelling earbuds for blocking out distractions.