The roar of engine noise from the nearby racetrack is a joy for many spectators. However, it can reach near-deafening levels for those sitting in the grandstands just a few feet away - and that's not including the accompanying cracks of gunfire from race guns or fireworks exploding through the air.
Yet many who love the sport aren't even aware of the damage they are inflicting on their hearing.
Finding the right level of protection is just as important as choosing the correct fit. The NRR (Noise Reduction Rating) indicates how much noise is reduced for every 3 dB reduction. So choosing a higher NRR may not be better depending on your hearing sensitivity, endurance racing environment, and ability to tolerate more muffled sound.
What you'll need to do is determine a safe noise exposure time for each ear plug with a decibel meter app or sound level meter.
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Last update on 2021-07-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Too often endurance racers find themselves skipping earplugs because they are worried about how well they will hear their bike or earbuds. Instead, take a few minutes to find the right level of protection while maintaining a quality of sound. Even if it takes you a few tries, at least you'll have your hearing protected and can focus on improving your fitness and endurance racing times.
The best way to find the right fit is to go in and talk with an audiologist or hearing aid specialist in person. They can give you detailed information on NRR levels for each brand of protection, determine how much noise reduction is appropriate for your situation, and help suggest an appropriate recommendation.
An Endurance Race is typically louder than a rock concert. I'm not saying that to scare you away, but to motivate you to find the right hearing protection. The decibel level of an Endurance race ranges anywhere from 95-115 dB, and that's just at the start line!
The average person may be able to take a few minutes in this environment without hearing damage, but after two hours it is likely to cause permanent damage if you're not wearing the right earplugs.
Even if you're doing everything else right – including proper bike fit and bike maintenance, eating healthy meals before and during your races – if you're not wearing earplugs then all those other factors are unnecessary.
The right type of ear plugs are important for hearing protection, but they need to fit well in your ears. The earplug choice is critical regardless of how loud the race is and what kind of environment you are riding in.
Comfort should be a primary criteria for your ear protection, but it's not just about the fit of the earplugs. If you're wearing just a set of earplugs that are too small, they won't do anything to protect your hearing.
For example, if you are at a race and watching the crowd, and all of a sudden the race erupts into some very loud chaos with multiple crashes in front of you – there's not much comfort in that. Even if the sound is muffled because of getting closer to the action, you need to be able to hear where your fellow racers are coming from, especially under those circumstances when you may need their help.
Durability also plays a major role in the reliability of your hearing protection. You may not have to replace ear plugs every time you watch a race, but it's important to make sure you have a set that will last you.
If you've never worn earplugs before, or haven't worn them in a while, then it will take some time to get used to them. There's nothing worse than getting into the heat of the moment during an Endurance event and realizing your earplugs are falling out – or worse, can't hold in place even after adjusting them multiple times.
Portability is an important factor in choosing your hearing protection. When you don't have a dedicated place to put your earplugs, you need to be able to carry them with you.
Size is an important factor when looking for a pair of earplugs that will work best for you. It can also be a bit tricky to know what size you are, and it's usually easier to try out multiple different pairs until you find the one that works best. The best way to figure out what size you need for earplugs that fit comfortably is in a controlled setting at an audiological office.
Considering the health of your ears, choosing a high-quality pair of ear plugs will keep them protected for a long time and can help with preventing hearing loss. Just remember, don't always go for the cheapest price or the most expensive price; if you're not 100% confident in your purchase then get something somewhere in between.
It's worth finding out how loud the Endurance race will be beforehand and then see what kind of protection you'll need. Price can also play a major role in how well, or how long, you will be able to use the earplugs.
Chances are, you'll want to wash your earplugs after each event. Depending on what materials you get for your earplugs – and if they are reusable – then the price of a few extra pairs may be worthwhile.
There are three primary causes for hearing loss that stem from Endurance racing:
Decibel Level * Distance * Time
Decibel Level is a multiplier that will help you determine the effect of volume on your hearing. If we talk about sound in terms of decibel level then it will be easier to make sense of hearing loss caused by Endurance racing. Let's think about how loud it is around us and how that compares to the world we live in.
Distance is a critical factor in Endurance racing. It's hard to hear the person closest to you over the loud speaker unless they are shouting at you. When it comes to hearing in noise, the more distance you have from the source of the sound then the less damage it does to your ears.
The time that an Endurance race stays loud is also critical. Think about how loud it gets during a race like a football game or a concert. There's only so long that you can stay awake and listen to music without going deaf.
When it comes to the subject of hearing loss, there are a lot of myths out there about what causes it and how to prevent it. Hearing loss is a fairly serious problem, but there are quite a few misconceptions regarding its cause that aren't entirely accurate. Some common myths include:
Not True! If you put on a set of earplugs and then are exposed to an incredibly loud noise like a Concert or a Race then you will not build up any resistance to it. You may be able to tolerate it for a short time, but that doesn't mean that your ears will quickly adjust to the decibels. Your hearing loss will only get worse over time, and you may slowly have a tougher time hearing until you lose some of your hearing ability.
If you are in a loud race you will experience hearing loss, and if you're not in a loud environment then it might not be as bad. It's hard to be exposed to a certain level of noise and think that you can avoid hearing loss.
Not True! If you are exposed to a certain level of noise, it can lead to hearing loss over time, which is irreversible. You can't go back in time, and even if you could, the ear damage would be permanent.
About 6 hours is the average length of an Endurance race. The length will vary based on the type of race you are participating in. Some races, like the 24 Hours of Lemons Auto Race and the 24 Hours of Daytona are much longer than other races. This means that earplugs are a must!
There are countless Motorsport events in the United States. There are hundreds of different types of races that take place throughout each year. The number is impossible to count for a variety of reasons, but it's safe to say there are thousands – if not tens or even hundreds of thousands – of Endurance racing events open for participation all over the world every single year.
A six hour race, that can permanently damage your hearing! If you are a fan of Endurance racing, then you know that the noise is going to be loud, and your hearing at the end of the day will not be the same. It's important to take precautions before participating in these events.
When it comes to preventing hearing loss as an Endurance racer, you have a few options at your disposal. Earplugs are just one way for you to protect your ears and keep them safe during these events that can get loud. The only thing that you can do is make sure you're prepared with proper hearing protection before you sign up for an event like this.
There actually are a few different ways to know if you are beginning to lose your hearing. If you start noticing that your hearing is not as good as it once was, then there's a chance that you might be going deaf. Sometimes people can get ear infections and rarely they can cause permanent damage to your hearing.
If you notice a ringing in your ears then you are at risk for hearing loss. Some people describe this ringing as being similar to the sound from when the microwave is on and it's ready to be opened.
Hearing someone talk with an accent can be really difficult for some people. If you're having trouble with someone not speaking clearly or have the problem of not understanding, then that can be an issue with your hearing. Over time, accents may get easier to understand but there could also be a more significant problem that you're dealing with.
The following infographic shows a list of the various noises when you are out and about. Any noise over 70-80db over a long period of time may cause damage to your hearing. A noise of over 120dB may cause immediate harm to your ears
If you notice that your hearing is impaired or you're starting to have some of the problems listed above, then there's a chance that you might be going deaf. You should start acting right away and seek out a hearing clinic for a good diagnosis. There isn't much that can be done if it's already too late, but if you take action early enough then you can treat it before it gets too bad.
I hope you have found this review of the best earplugs for motorcycle racing useful. The purpose of this article is to help you make an informed decision on which product is right for you. The options and features that we review are completely unbiased and are based on our own experience.
Please take everything into consideration before choosing a brand or type of hearing protection. The cost of hearing protection is important to consider when deciding on what product is right for you. Fortunately, there is an answer for every budget .
What To Look For:
Please Note: Just because an ear defender is marked, for example, "Gunshot" - it will still cover other things, like "explosions"
Last update on 2021-07-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Hi, I am Nick, and I have suffered with ear problems my whole life, mainly tinnitus. I have tried a lot of products to help protect my ears over this period, and several devices to block out the constant ringing
“Are you having problems hearing? If so, those around you already know it. Hearing loss is no laughing matter, so don’t be a punchline.”
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