One way to spice up your motorcycle ride is to wear earbuds in your helmet to listen to your favorite tracks. Earbuds also reduce unwanted noise, allow you to receive important calls, and listen to GPS voice navigation.
But one problem motorcyclists face is knowing how to wear earbuds in helmets properly. In addition, earphones can fall from your ears if not correctly fitted in and may also hurt your ears.
This article will guide you on wearing earbuds in your motorcycle helmet for a better experience. We will also discuss the risk of using earbuds, safety measures to follow, and other alternatives to earbuds.
Choosing the Right Earphones and Helmet
You need to be cautious when wearing earphones in your helmet. First, your helmet must fit properly, and second, you don’t want your earphone falling off when riding. Hence, you must choose a suitable helmet and earphones.
A helmet with just enough space to fit in your earphones is the perfect fit. But not so much space to let it slip off or too little space that it hurts your ears.
When choosing earphones, ensure it is comfortable. Buy earphones small enough to fit nicely into your ears without sticking out away from your head. Also, opt for wireless Bluetooth earphones.
The wired earphone can be very uncomfortable, and the wires may get tangled. Hence, you must adjust them often, which can be very distracting. Choose earphones that should fit well enough not to fall off when you shake your head without your helmet. It will ensure they don’t fall off when you adjust your helmet.
The helmet itself must fit well too. It shouldn’t block your view or wiggle when you shake your head. It also has to be comfortable when you have your earphones on. A tight helmet will make your ears hurt by crushing your ears between it and the earphone.
How To Wear Earphones in Your Motorcycle Helmet
Now you know how to choose the right earphone and helmet, here’s how to wear earphones in your helmet:
- Fit your earphones properly into your ears.
- Put your helmet on your head, keeping it above your ears.
- Place your index fingers over the earphones to hold them in place. Then use your other fingers to lower the helmet.
- Once the helmet has gone past your ears, remove your fingers.
- Then you can finish wearing the helmet.
If you realize your earphones are displaced, adjust them by slowly lifting the helmet, one side at a time. Reach under the lifted side and adjust the earphone. Do the same for the other side.
Now you’ve got the earphones on. The next step is finding the right volume. Volume matters most if you intend to listen to music. You should find a suitable volume, loud enough to hear the music over road noise. But it shouldn’t be so loud you can’t hear essential sounds like sirens or too loud to damage your hearing.
The volume should also be moderate enough so that when you come to a stop, the music won’t be noisy. Usually, it will take some trial and error to find a fitting volume for your rides. You should ensure you don’t adjust the volume while riding, as this can be dangerous.
Risks of Using Earphones in Motorcycle Helmets
Using earphones in your motorcycle helmet comes with some risks. Here are some risk factors to consider before buying one:
1. Damage to Ear
Earphones can damage your ears over time because of the loud music. You have to raise the volume high enough to outweigh the road noise. This loud music gets crushed between your ear and the headset, making it more harmful.
Luckily, some earphones have an option for automatic volume control. This function automatically adjusts the volume depending on your riding speed. Hence, it reduces the risk of hearing damage.
Focus is vital when motorcycling as some seconds of distraction may lead to accidents. Unfortunately, music can be a source of distraction for riders. You may focus more on the music than your environment, leading to an accident.
3. Blocking Out Important Sounds
A significant appeal to using earphones is that they cancel out road noises like the wind. But your earphone may block out more than that. It may block out essential sounds like car honks or ambulance sirens. Hence, you won’t hear sounds that may warn of dangers on the road, leading to possible collisions.
Another issue with using earphones when motorcycling is whether they are legal or not. Well, in most states, there are no laws restricting the use of earphones.
But some states may forbid the use of headphones while allowing the use of earphones and other Bluetooth intercoms. But only on the condition that riders wear them on a single ear.
These are flexible ones, but earphones may be outlawed in some states. For example, nine states in the United States prohibit using such devices, including Washington and California. But in the UK, it’s not a criminal offense.
Considering these, you should always check the law in your locality to know if using earphones is okay. If it is, you should still follow the safety measures mentioned earlier to avoid danger. Always remember your safety and that of other road users come first when motorcycling.
Alternatives of Earphones When Motorcycling
Earphones are one of several ways to listen to music or connect to your phone when riding. Depending on what you want, there are other options you can choose:
1. Smart Helmets
Smart helmets are Bluetooth helmets designed to promote safety while motorcycling. They come with a built-in sound system that connects to your phone via Bluetooth.
Besides listening to music, they allow you to connect and communicate with other riders. You can also make calls while riding. Some support voice activation, which means you can use them completely hands-free.
One advantage they provide is that you don’t need an extra device. Sometimes, you could forget your earphones at home. But since smart helmets come with an integrated intercom system, you can’t leave them behind.
2. Motorcycle Speakers
Some motorcycles come with built-in speakers. Speakers won’t block unwanted noise and don’t sound as great as earphones. But if you only want to listen to music while on the road without the risk of getting distracted, they are your best option.
Motorcycle speakers also prevent hearing damage since they are not fitted into your ears. Some even have an automatic volume adjustment feature. It automatically increases or decreases the volume when the speed changes. Hence, you can always hear your music well despite the environment.
3. Helmet Bluetooth Headsets
Motorcycle helmet Bluetooth headsets are add-on intercom devices that fit into your helmet. Just like your earphones, they connect to your phone. But they also feature a microphone to allow you to talk better when calling.
Often, there’s also a Push to Talk (PTT) handlebar controller so you can receive calls without touching your headset. You simply have to press the button on the handlebar. Some also use voice commands to adjust the volume, change music, etc.
Bluetooth headsets are very versatile. They connect to smartphones and walkie-talkies via Bluetooth, allowing you to make and receive calls. You can also play music and use GPS voice navigation. While you can do all these with earphones, Bluetooth headsets allow you to connect to fellow riders, something you can’t do with earphones.
earphones connect to your smartphone, allowing you to listen to music and receive calls when motorcycling. Choose one that fits perfectly into your ears to prevent earphones from falling off when you adjust your helmet. Also, ensure the space in your helmet is neither too small to cause pain nor too much to let the earphone hang loosely.
While earphones are fun, there are risks involved in using them. They could cause ear damage, distract you or even block out the sounds of vehicles. But you can reduce risk by following the safety tips mentioned in this article. Also, ensure you know your local laws regarding earphones because they are prohibited in some states.