What Is It Like Skiing With Airpods? Pros and Cons

by Laura Penrose | Updated: October 27th, 2022 |  Skiing Articles

The ability to listen to music while skiing has changed how some people ski over the years. From helmet inserts to slim in-ear headphones - the choice for music while skiing has never been better. So should you invest in a pair of AirPods for your next ski trip?

Skiing with AirPods can be a great way to listen to music to give you an extra energy boost while you are skiing. However, you should always be careful while listening to music while skiing as using AirPods can restrict your sense of hearing.  

woman enjoy skiing

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What Are Airpods?


Unless you have been living under a rock for the past few years, you will have heard of Apple’s AirPods collection. These AirPods come in 3 different varieties: 2nd generation AirPods, 3rd generation AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max (over-ear headphones).

Although they were not the first Bluetooth-connected earphones, AirPods have revolutionized the way that we interact with music. Apple is known worldwide for its iconic white-colored earphones and since releasing its AirPods, they have become a popular new accessory.

Pros of Wearing AirPods While Skiing

AirPods can be a great way to listen to music while you are skiing. They are small, comfortable, and easy to wear. Depending on the type of AirPods that you have, you would have access to a variety of features that could enhance your experience.

girl on ski

1. Enhance Your Focus

Listening to music while you are skiing can enhance your skiing and give you an overall different experience. Similar to working out at the gym, having some beats pumping while you are shredding down the slopes can help you to jam out and enhance your focus.

The AirPods Pro has a normal mode, noise-canceling, and transparency mode. Utilizing the noise-canceling mode can let you block out all noise around you to focus on your music and skiing, while the transparency mode allows you to hear everything that is going on around you while still listening to your music.

2. Wireless Bluetooth Connectivity

One of the biggest advantages of AirPods for skiing is that they connect to your phone via wireless Bluetooth. Wireless connectivity is a game-changer for skiing because there are no cables or cords that you have to worry about.

So, when you are skiing, you don’t have to worry about pulling on the cord on your headphones. Instead, you can easily connect to your AirPods and enjoy many hours of listening before needing to recharge.

skier in powder

3. Easy to Wear With a Helmet

They are also small and you can easily fit them over your helmet while skiing. This is one of the biggest advantages of the AirPods over a larger headset for listening to your music. Your helmet can also be used as a layer of protection for your AirPods so they are less likely to fall out.

Cons of Wearing AirPods While Skiing

1. Lose Your Sense of Hearing

One of the inherent disadvantages of wearing AirPods while you are skiing is that you are losing your sense of hearing. Or maybe not? One of the great features of the AirPods Pro is the different settings that can be utilized, such as the transparency mode (note, not all models of AirPods come with this mode available).

Transparency mode allows you to both listen to music and the AirPods will feed noise from the outside into your ear at the same time, allowing you to hear what is going on around you as well as listen to your music. The downside of transparency mode when you are skiing though is that the wind will create a disturbance on the outside of the AirPod.

2. Lose Focus

Verbier Resort

As I mentioned in the pros section, listening to music can be a great way to pump you up while you are skiing. However, it could also make you lose focus while you are skiing.

Skiing can become a relatively dangerous sport, relatively quickly if you lose focus. If you are not paying attention to your surroundings, or you miss a bump in the snow, it can turn south very quickly.

3. Not Hearing the Snow

One of the reasons that I love skiing so much is that I get to be out in nature and enjoy the crisp air, the sound of silence, or the sound of my skies on the snow. Listening to music takes you just a little further away from nature and back into reality a little bit more.

Spring skiing in Colorado
Photo by Snow Snow licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

This may be great for some people, but other people enjoy being in nature and being able to appreciate everything it has to offer. I think this goes without saying, but there are certainly some situations where you need your sense of hearing, focus, and to be able to hear the snow. And, in these situations, you probably shouldn’t be listening to music anyway.

How Do You Wear AirPods While Skiing?


White AirPods in white snow aren’t going to be easy to find if you drop one. The most important thing to remember is you need to secure your AirPods.

They can be easy to fall out if they sit too loosely in your ears. The AirPods Pro does come in three different sizes. So, if you do have the pro version, you could try a different end-cap that fits a little snugger in your ear for ski days.

A great way to secure the AirPods while you’re skiing is by wearing your helmet and not trying to take them out while you are skiing or riding the lift. You could also try wearing a head balaclava or headband to help secure them in your ears.

Another thing to consider is to manage the settings of your AirPods from your phone rather than using the tap or press features on the AirPods themselves. This will also help you from accidentally pulling them out while you are trying to switch between functions of pausing the music.  


So, Should You Wear AirPods While Skiing?

Ultimately, skiing with AirPods is something that you should try out and see if you like it. Some people very much enjoy listening to music while they are skiing and other people enjoy hearing their skis carve through the snow as they traverse down the mountain.

The small design and the ability to wear AirPods underneath your helmet is a great advantages of AirPods. But you should also be aware of the increased risks of losing your sense of hearing while listening to music and be careful to not drop your white AirPods on white snow.

Alternatives to Airpods

If you're not feeling AirPods, these in-ear helmet headphones might be more suited to you. They stay in your helmet earcups so less chance of losing them on the slopes.