Gyms can be very noisy places. Weights crashing down on the ground, and excessively loud music can all have a negative effect on your hearing over time. Even if you prefer to listen to music with your own headphones, it’s important to keep the volume at a safe level, which can be difficult if you’re competing with speakers. Certain types of exercises can also cause a strain on your entire body, including your inner ear, so it’s important to be mindful of this. Here are five ways to protect your hearing while working out.
Wear ear protection
If it’s noisy where you workout, it might be a good idea to get some custom ear plugs. You can get ear plugs that are designed for sport. These will help protect your ears, whether it’s from loud music in the gym, or traffic noise while you’re cycling, for example.
Turn the music down
Be mindful of the volume of the music coming out of your headphones. This shouldn’t be too loud either and after a while exposure to high volumes can damage your hearing. There is a safe volume for headphones which you should try to stick to while working out. It might be frustrating if you’re trying to compete with the loud gym music. In this case it could be worth investing in noise-canceling headphones, so you don’t have to worry about any background noise.
Avoid blocked ears
In order to protect your health in general, avoid working out with a bad cold. If you are determined to exercise, take a decongestant beforehand. If not, this could cause your ears to become blocked which can lead to other complications. Physical exertion also creates pressure in the body, including in your inner ears. This may increase discomfort if your ears are already blocked from a cold or infection. Speak to your doctor if you have frequent blocked ears.
Don’t strain during weight lifting
Your entire body is connected during a workout, and straining can affect your ears. If you enjoy weight lifting and resistance exercises, try not to overdo it. Increased pressure in your ears due to straining can tear your inner ear, resulting in a ringing sound, or temporary tinnitus. Other symptoms can include dizziness, block ears, and sensitivity to sound. Remember to control your breathing and movement without straining, and don’t hold your breath while weight lifting.
Speak to an audiologist
If you would like more advice on how to take care of your hearing, it’s a good idea to speak to an audiologist. They will provide guidance on what to do if you’re frequently exposed to high volumes. If you have experienced hearing loss, you can also ask about hearing aids specifically designed for sport. Your audiologist will be able to recommend the best hearing aid for you. Whether you’re living with hearing loss, or are concerned about exposure to loud sounds, it’s always best to seek professional advice. This way you can ensure the protection of your hearing.
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