Thursday, September 15, 2011

Yurbuds: The Ideal Headphones for Working Out?

If I think about frequent, multiple purchases related to my working out hobby, headphones is easily the item at the top of the list. I’ve been through every type you can think of such as stock iPod headphones, stock Sansa headphones, Sony sport buds, Sony Over the Ear sport buds, JVC buds, Sennheiser Over the Ear, Sennheiser In Ear Buds, etc. None of them are in use anymore either because they crapped out due to sweat, not fitting right or I was immensely annoyed with how often they would pop out of my ears while working out. The last point is a biggie. Nothing takes you out of your element more than having to deal with headphones constantly popping out of your ear while you are working out.
After many years and many headphones, I think I’ve come across the perfect pair, Yurbuds.

I first came across Yurbuds at the Ironman expo in Arizona last year. The headphones intrigued me but my focus was on getting stuff I would need for the race so I never really thought about the headphones again. The topic resurfaced this Spring during a few runs where a new pair over the ear headphones and sunglasses didn’t play nice. The over-the-ear models do a good job of staying on the ear but unfortunately wear sunglasses doesn’t work out well since they are both competing for space across the top of your ear.
(My brother Andy modeling an old pair of Sennheiser Over the Ear buds and the issue with sunglasses)

I remembered the Yurbuds from the Ironman expo and ended up getting a pair online with fantastic results. On the website itself, you have the option to take a picture with a quarter or iPhone ear bud held next to your ear so the folks at Yurbud can analyze the picture and figure out what size would fit you the best.
I opted for the $29.99 option which slides over the stock iPod ear buds or any ear bud with a flat face. The earbuds arrived after a few days and I was excited to try them on except I noticed one of the buds had a tear in them. Short term, the buds probably still would have worked fine but it was crappy spending the money and getting a defective product. Fortunately, this wasn’t an issue.
I went to the website and used their automated web form to send my order number and the issue. A couple of days later, I received a note from their customer service team apologizing for the defective product and that they had a replacement pair already in the mail. A couple of days later, the replacement pair arrived and I was ready to rock.
The Yurbuds are simple enough. They slip over the headphones and go into the ear. The material is made of a “grippy” silicone that helps to keep it in the ear. The cover also adds water resistant protection to the headphone to help against sweat. From the “Look and Feel” test, they certainly seemed like they would stay in  my ear but the only way to know was to put them to the test.
Here are a few workouts I put them through:
  1. 50 mile bike
  2. 1 hour long run
  3. 20 minute tempo run with 5 x 1 min all out sprints
  4. CrossFit: As many rds as possible within 20 minutes: 25 24” box jumps/15 burpees/25 unbroken double unders (jump rope)
I’m happy to say that through all these exercises, the buds NEVER fell out of my ear. It was like workout nirvana being able to get through the workout and not having to fidget with ear buds. I was especially impressed that they didn’t pop out during the CrossFit workout that involved a lot of jumping up and down. During the times when I head to wear my sunglasses, I no longer had the issues with having to share space with the sunglasses and headphones. They now play co-habitat the ear in harmony as modeled by my brother below.
From a sound perspective, the audio sounded pretty much the same. Although the Yurbuds go into your ear a little more, it didn’t completely block out other noise which is good if you want to be aware of your surroundings.
Overall, I’ve been very pleased with the Yurbuds. They are a bit pricey at $29.99 for ear bud covers but if I add up the costs of the predecessors looking for the “right’ pair of earbuds and the annoyance factor of interrupted workouts, the costs is a lot more justifiable. If you’re interested in snagging a pair, check out the link below.

1 comment:

  1. I just got the Sennheiser In Ear Buds last night - should have read through this...