Do you listen to music while riding? if so, how?



NTEKA Active

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Feb 19, 2017
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I feel headphones are dangerous and taking up a water bottle spot is annoying plus having things attached to my handlebars annoy me but I love having music while riding. Any suggestions? What are you doing while riding to have music to motivate you?
 

OkiePhlyer

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Feb 3, 2017
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I tried headphones once, but couldn't hear cars coming behind me. I also got a lot of wind noise and found that I had to turn the volume up louder than I should.

I ride with a friend that uses a bluetooth speaker. It works well, and you can hear traffic with it better than with headphones. I think it works better than headphones.
 

ak_cyclofan

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Feb 6, 2017
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Personally, I am waiting to get the new Apple earbuds (wireless/bluetooth)...it annoys the heck out of me to have wires hanging and getting caught in things and they are distracting. In this regard, any wireless/bluetooth speaker/earbud works. In my experience the even the noise canceling ones still allow for cars to be heard...
 
Nov 7, 2016
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Personally, I am waiting to get the new Apple earbuds (wireless/bluetooth)...it annoys the heck out of me to have wires hanging and getting caught in things and they are distracting. In this regard, any wireless/bluetooth speaker/earbud works. In my experience the even the noise canceling ones still allow for cars to be heard...
Good luck with your very expensive ear buds when you hit some bumpy terrain and they wiggle loose and fall out ... ;)

Just route the cable to the earphones through your jersey or jacket - it's a 2-second job and works just fine.
 

Gnufrau

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Nov 21, 2015
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I use wired earbuds that have a loop that goes over the earlobe. They are very secure, and I can easily hear even an electric car rolling up behind me. The ones I use also have the volume control right on the wire, so I can adjust the volume as needed for the background noise
 

Froze

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Jul 13, 2004
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I find that very difficult to believe that with earphones in and the music going you can hear an electric car. And as you stated as the background noise goes up you will be turning up the sound even more which would entirely prevent you from hearing a car not alone an electric one. And you'll never hear that faster cyclist coming up behind and passing you.

Be it as it is, I will not any way shape or form endorse anyone to use headphones while out riding a bike no matter if you can hear a pin drop on the pavement which would be impossible even if you weren't playing any music in the ears. Look, riding a bike requires that all your available senses are fully available and operational at all times without hindrance. Wearing earplugs even without sound being transmitted still hinders the hearing to some degree, adding music to the mix hinders it further. Our hears have a hard enough time trying to hear over the wind noise we get in the ears as we ride not alone adding ear plugs and then music.

I understand that there are deaf people who ride bikes and someone is going to bring that up, but I've found that deaf people learn to develop their other senses beyond what "normal" people do, so they are more aware with their eyes then most people are that have both sight and hearing. I also understand that some people only ride in parks and thus conflict with traffic isn't an issue, however I also found that when I riding through a park I could be screaming MURDERER ON YOUR LEFT as I pass a cyclist with earbuds in and they won't hear me! And there has been plenty of times I had to ride off into the grass because these dopes with buds can't hear and they like to take up the entire bike path instead of staying to the far right like they would have to if driving a they were driving a car...but that whole concept eludes them on a bike.

Obviously this is your choice to do whatever you want to do, you asked an opinion and that's all I can give you.

I can see someday in the future a goggle that will allow someone to wear and watch TV or play games all the while being able to see the road where they're driving, and this question is going to pop up hear, "do you think it's safe to ride a bike with these goggles on so I watch and listen to TV?" And someone will respond, "sure I do it all the time, I can see the road why the heck not?"
 
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otb4evr

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Apr 22, 2005
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I listen to music with in-ear headphones anytime I ride solo. I ride typically 10 - 15 hours a week. The vast majority of those with a tune in my ear. Those of you that disparage riding with headphones, please tell me what you do differently when you hear a car coming up on you that you don't do when there isn't a car approaching?
 

Froze

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Jul 13, 2004
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I listen to music with in-ear headphones anytime I ride solo. I ride typically 10 - 15 hours a week. The vast majority of those with a tune in my ear. Those of you that disparage riding with headphones, please tell me what you do differently when you hear a car coming up on you that you don't do when there isn't a car approaching?

Motorists transmit what they're going to do to by the sound of their engine. For example, you're approaching an intersection that you're going to go straight through, but the motorist behind you wants to turn right and wants to beat you to the intersection before you cross it, so he guns the engine and cuts you off to make the turn and you have to slam on your brakes to avoid an accident that will surely will be a hit and run. I don't know how you ride a bike, but when I hear that happening I slow down, with headphones on mixed with wind and music you probably won't hear anything till you see it happening and by then it could be too late. That's just one example, but others involve a dog running up on you from behind, a kid doing something, the bike malfunctioning that if you continue to ride could either destroy the problem or make you crash suddenly,

Granted for the hearing able person they rely on their sight more then their ears which in turns lower our concentration from what we hear, but hearing is important, I found that out in some very critical situations I've been in where without learning to use my hearing and improve on it further as time and experience went on I would have been killed many times over, the average person won't understand this, but I know people who do. So I prefer to use my hearing as much as I can without as much as possible hindering it.

Yes music does help you to perform better, but it also gets you into an almost hypnotic state where things going on around you start to zone out because you're solely concentrated on riding performance and your in that zone, when that happens the danger increases for the rider. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1369847811000684 This study I agree with all aspects except the one about using one ear but, while I do believe that's better than both being used it's the zone effect that I worry about. There are weird phones on the market called bone phones that conduct the sound through the temporal bone, I've never tried these so not sure how well they work, but I still think the zoning thing could happen.

Bike riding by it's nature is a inherently risky sport where hundreds of cyclists are killed each year, and taking away one of your senses that could have prevented a tragedy, to me at least, doesn't make sense...pun intended! You, ok, you want to argue about the word "you", fine, how about me, myself, and I, those last three people need a second layer of defense.

Obviously I can't dictate to anyone what they should do or not do, that's entirely up to you what you feel is safe for yourself, but I hope at least you give some consideration about this subject before you completely laugh it off. But before you start laughing too hard consider this, California, Delaware, Florida (this state has the highest cyclist death rate of any state in the US due to retirees mostly), Maryland, New York, Rhode Island, and Virginia, that's 7 states (I may be missing one other) that have laws that restrict or ban the use of headphones, headsets, or earbuds. Pennsylvania is bit more complicated in that they prohibit people driving vehicles from wearing those devices, but in PA a vehicle also could mean a bicycle. Why do those states, and reports are more states will be doing the same thing, think that wearing headphones, buds, whatever, should not be practiced? Are they trying to control us? no, they're trying to keep needless injuries and deaths down.

I do agree if you're riding your trainer in your house music is fine, that type of riding bores me to tears so I need a major distraction.
 
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Uawadall

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Jun 14, 2015
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Riding with head phones is stupid, plain and simple. On busy roads with no shoulder, was are what will give you the first warning to take heed. Ever been chased by a dog while cycling? I have a few times and had my clue to sprint(because I could hear it behind me). Give on valid reason to ride with headphones?
 

Froze

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Jul 13, 2004
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The valid reason given by people is that the music helps to establish a rhythm which has been been proven to help with performance, which I understand, but is the cost to improve that performance worth the risk on the street? I say no, but that's me (and that doesn't consider zoning out problem that occurs while listening to music on street); I would say fine, improve your performance with using music on the trainer. The other weird thing about buds, I found this out the other day talking to someone who does wear them while out riding, he said it's a distraction! A distraction alright, he couldn't hear a darn thing just the music, if it's a distraction then he's completely removed from the business of paying attention to his riding and what's going on around him, I know this because he never heard me yelling and didn't even notice me till I got alongside of him and started waving at him to get his attention, he was completely zoned out in a tunnel vision effect of seeing nothing but the a foot wide area of the road about 2 feet in front of his front wheel. I didn't want to get into an argument with the guy so I just left it at his distraction point.
 

stogies4life

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Apr 4, 2012
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I depend on my ears as much as my eyes when I ride, so no buds for me. I get folks who wear them but when I'm asked about it I am always against their use. Plus, I already have my phone with me for tracking so I just figure if I want music on my ride, this killing two birds with one stone.
 

Polfi992

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Feb 27, 2017
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Not at all. I don't like to hear music while riding. Because there is a big chance for crushing.
 

Uawadall

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Jun 14, 2015
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he was completely zoned out in a tunnel vision effect of seeing nothing but the a foot wide area of the road about 2 feet in front of his front wheel. \.

The biggest reason not to do it. I heard movement in the bushes and slowed down, next thing you know, I saw 5 bears crossing the street. I can't begin to imagine where i'd be If I was zoning out and crushing it to music. Nearly hit a few deer plenty of times ,but heard them in the nick of time. I guess I know whether do it, but its bad practice.
 
Nov 7, 2016
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I understand that there are deaf people who ride bikes and someone is going to bring that up, but I've found that deaf people learn to develop their other senses beyond what "normal" people do, so they are more aware with their eyes then most people are that have both sight and hearing. I also understand that some people only ride in parks and thus conflict with traffic isn't an issue, however I also found that when I riding through a park I could be screaming MURDERER ON YOUR LEFT as I pass a cyclist with earbuds in and they won't hear me! And there has been plenty of times I had to ride off into the grass because these dopes with buds can't hear and they like to take up the entire bike path instead of staying to the far right like they would have to if driving a they were driving a car...but that whole concept eludes them on a bike.
That is simply untrue and an often repeated urban myth. Unless deaf cyclists develop eyes in the back of their head, they are unable to sense approaching noises / objects / vehicles coming at them from behind whilst they have their head facing forwards. No special spidey-sense or any other form of magical assistance; they cannot hear. End of.
 

Uawadall

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Jun 14, 2015
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That is simply untrue and an often repeated urban myth. Unless deaf cyclists develop eyes in the back of their head, they are unable to sense approaching noises / objects / vehicles coming at them from behind whilst they have their head facing forwards. No special spidey-sense or any other form of magical assistance; they cannot hear. End of.

To a degree, a deaf person will most likely utilize their vision more than if the could hear. Its not a matter of "spider sense", but one of using what you have as efficiently as possible. Regardless, I don't think thats the point. The point is, a deaf person doesn't choose to be deaf. A rider blasting music in his ear to his impending doom is a choice.
 

Froze

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Jul 13, 2004
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