“Bone-in technology to hear both music and traffic is melodic.”
By Jan Spalding, RPM editor
My inaugural run in my bone-in technology Aftershokz headphones left me with an afterglow. It was sunny. It was warm—balmy even. It was early April. It was not Michiana.
I had been craving this vacation run for months, ever since I figured my half-marathon training put my 10-miler on the day-after arrival. I had also been craving a pair of Aftershokz, ever since Fleet Feet Mishawaka owner Brett Albers showed them to me for the RPM gift guide last November.
But alas, there is only so much cool running stuff a gal can justify. New shoes were a necessity (OK, there’s nothing better than that) and a Nike winter running vest (an intuitive surprise from my husband) was my winter limit. Running and listening to music while simultaneously hearing traffic and neighbor’s “hellos” with “Trekz titanium open ear wireless bone conduction headphones” would have to wait.
As an outdoor runner, I don’t like not hearing the noises around me. I have had enough jolts while being lost in the music when a car speeds by that I had come to the point of holding my phone in my hand with the speaker on so I could stay aware.
Enter Aftershokz. The “ear” pieces do not go into your ears at all. Instead, they sit right in front. The dual clarity of sound— from both music and traffic—is one of the most practical running technological advances I have tired. You can stop and chat with a neighbor and carry on a normal-decibel conversation. No need to hit pause (unless you are listening to a great book!)
Here’s the actual technology statement from the Trekz Afterchokz website:
Bone conduction is a natural part of the hearing process—sound travels through our eardrums and bones simultaneously. (Trekz) has taken the concept to the next level . . . with the development of transducers that guide mini vibrations through the cheekbones to the inner ears, delivering sound without plugging or covering them.
Mine are bluetooth and have multiple easy-touch features for pausing, managing volume, answering the phone, etc.
Honestly—I dare you to try them and not feel the “wow!” Fleet Feet Mishawaka has a demo kiosk where you can see why I truly think these are the next best thing since gluten-free sliced bread.
Whenever I am in the Fleet Feet store, I find a way to show them to someone. I like to see the smile come on and eyes widen, because they really didn’t believe me.
I bought mine at Fleet Feet for about $100. (There are less expensive wired sets and of course, more expensive sets with more features.) That’s why I made myself wait— a treat worthy of a 10-mile run celebration, and still standing to tell about it.