T Nation

MP3 Player at the Gym?


Last month, I went out and bought a new MP3 player. From all the research I did, I think I bought one of the smallest ones on the market (Samsung YP-F1V). It's got a built in belt clip kind of like a cellphone, which is pretty cool. I bought it with the full intent to use it while I work out. I've come to the realization, however, that there is no fucking way that I can do things like deadlifts, front quats, squats, etc. with any degree of intensity without the damned earbuds (I think that's what they're called) falling out or the cords getting in my way. Any advice for an MP3-challenged guy currently doing ABBH??


I run the cord up underneath my shirt, either through the sleeve or up for the bottom. That helps keeping the cord out of my way when power lifting


Well, the only thing you can do for them falling out would be to go out and buy another pair that fits tighter in your ears, or put them in and wear a headband over your ears... yeah, weird but it'll work.

And for the wires getting in your way, put them in your shirt, this way they'll be under your shirt close to your body and have them come up thru your neck hole.


It's funny you would mention this, because I just noticed the same problem myself. I have a Samsung YP-T5 I usually just keep in my pocket while at the gym. But for as small and out-of-the-way as it is, squats and deadlifts are a flat-out pain in the ass to do when listening to it.

So, pretty much, when I'm in the rack, I have to just settle for whatever the house is playing (usually a weak-ass corporate radio station playing the same shit you've heard a thousand times - the oldies station is what I usually pray for).


Earbuds refuse to stay in one of my ears (not the other, go figure), so I bought some little headphones with an adjustable rubber thingy that wraps around the ear. These stay put for me even while running. I think I picked mine up at Target for under $10. They are Philips, something like this -


I like the headphones with the in ear bud, but has a headband. Sony sports makes some nice ones


I also runn the cord up my sleeve (my MP# has an arm band) and out the collar.



There's a whole technique to this. Like cazunzj said, you have to run it under your shirt. If you're squatting and you clip the player at your waistline, you need to clip the MP3 player (I used an iPod Mini for a while) behind you; otherwise it will impeded your hip flexion when you try to go ass-to-grass.

However, if the cord between the earphones and the player is too taut, it will come out whenever your perform any significant movement. The trick to this is to have the length of the line evenly distributed; if you pull all the slack on the line to waist level, the earphones will pop out whenever you go 'Venice Beach' with your chest; if you take all the slack up to your collar, the plug comes out of the player whenever you squat. If the line's evenly distributed, there's no problem. But no matter what you day, players are still a pain in the ass when you're trying to do olympic lifts.

I just burn playlists now and listen to them on CD.


I have never had any of the problems you all seem to be having. I have wrap around head phones that don't go anywhere I don't want them to. I have an iPod Shuffle that is small enough to be unnoticeable in my pocket. Case solved.


I run the cord up the back of my shirt and clip the head phones to the back collar or to my bandana (I need that to keep the sweat out of my ears). You really need a clip on the phones where the line splits to give you a little slack and keep the tips in your ears. I have some Etymotics ear buds that came with them but you could figure out how to add one to any phones.


Just bought that same one this morning for the same reasons. Anxious to check it out....


Yes, get the ones that are like earbuds but have an extra piece of plastic that curves around your ear so they don't fall off.

My left earlobe is bigger than my right, so wearing my bro's ipod headphones causes my right ear to hurt extensively from being so tight, and the left one falls out all the time. Damn I suck.


If you want to spend some money, check out Shure E2 earbuds. They come with all different sizes of inserts in both silicone and foam. I use a pair of these for playing guitar at church so we don't have a ton of stage volume. They sound awesome (use them for my iPod, too) and block out almost all ambient gym noise (like that guy on the cell phone in between his sets of curls in the power rack).

They're about 100 bucks, but well worth it. They stay in place, too.



I had this same problem. Easy fix. Hit up Radio Shack and get THEIR brand of ear foam covers. It increases the girth of the ear buds just enough, and fit me way better. And I second the recommendation of running it up the front of your shirt. When doing pullups or running, I usually have it off to the side of my hip. Squats and Deads it's more off to my back. Wearing a tight shirt helps too, keeps the slack consitent and in place.


Why buy new ones... just do it like the Tour de France pros - tape them!


Excuse me, are you me!? :smiley: I've got the same problem with my ears, and even though I've been doing isolation exercises for years, my right earhole just won't catch up with my left.

Anyway, I bought exactly the same headphones andersons has linked to. They don't fall out, and actually have very good sound quality and volume. Run the cables behind your head and down the inside back of your T-shirt. Squatting might be a bit tricky, but just give the cable a bit of slack before putting the bar on your back and you should be OK.


The terminology might be wrong, but here's my observation:

Some people have a less-prominent tragus (that part of your ear that sticks up and partially covers your ear canal), and it can't hold the earbuds in. My wife's earbuds kept falling out for this reason, until we found (an iPod accessory, but you might find the same for your earbud style) these plastic pieces that clipped onto the earbuds and made a little funnel that nestled more snugly into the ear canal.

Not only did they stay in, but their design funnels more music into the ear with less ambient noise allowed. They provide a much better listening experience.

Good luck.


I think you can get them, but you do end up looking like a dick. See.



Those Etymotics ear buds are expensive as hell!!!! Did your player come with those??


amgirl...Do you mean you bought the same Samsung that I bought? I think it sounds great, but the cord for the ear buds is a major pain in the ass. Either that or I'm just an uncoordinated idiot...which is very possible. Let me know what you think of it.


The cord to my MP3 player must have a split in the wire to the right side only. It cuts in and out. I've been looking at this unit...


Probably won't stay on too well for lifting. But I am going to keep looking for something similar as far as the Bluetooth Wireless.

You don't even have to keep the MP3 player on your belt. It can be in your gym bag in the corner.