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Running with a Hat: 5 Reasons It’s a Must

One of the many great things about running is that you don’t need a ton of equipment to partake in the sport.

Obviously, I’m a big fan of wearing sunglasses for running.

I think running belts are a great idea, too.

But what about running hats?

Are they actually 100% necessary for running at your best or just a simple fashion accessory?

Should You Run with a Hat?

Whether you call them running hats or jogging hats, you should definitely be wearing one when you go for a run…or jog.

While running doesn’t require a long list of gear, here are five reasons you should make sure yours includes a good running hat.


1. Running Hats Keep Your Hair Out of the Way

Unless you keep your hair nice and short, it’s bound to get in the way when you go for a run.

And who needs one more obstacle when they’re just trying to enjoy some exercise?

This is probably the main reason that most runners finally decide to wear a hat. Even if your hair is long enough for a ponytail or braids, wearing a hat is a simple step you can take to make sure it doesn’t work loose and end up in your face.

2. And Keep Sweat Out of Your Eyes

Even leisurely runs can come with some discomfort.

But while most runners fear shin splints above all else, a far more common – may be more insidious – pain comes from getting sweat in your eyes.

There’s no way to ignore that stinging sensation and, even worse, no way to keep more of it from coming so long as you keep sweating.

Unless you wear a hat during your runs. As long as the lining is up for the task, it’s the perfect solution for keeping sweat out of your eyes so you can stay focused on the path ahead.

3. Running Hats Will Keep You Cool

To be clear, when I say, “running hat”, I mean something very specific. I’m definitely not talking about the run-of-the-mill “baseball cap” that most people wear.

Instead, I’m referring to a specific type of hat that is lightweight and designed with sufficient venting to allow for maximum breathability and evaporation.

Otherwise, the majority of the body heat you create when running won’t go anywhere. It will stay right on top of your head and, oh man, will you feel it in the worst way.

(Unless, of course, you’re running in freezing conditions – which I don’t recommend

So, while any hat will keep your hair at bay, a true runner’s hat is one that is specifically designed to let the heat escape from your head – thanks to plenty of mesh - and actually keep you cool.

4. Running Hats May Make You More Aerodynamic

This is a benefit of running hats that I’m not completely sold on, but it merits bringing up because plenty of serious runners definitely swear by it.

As we just covered, wearing a hat will keep your hair from getting in your face. It would also mean your hair has less chance of creating unnecessary drag, which would, in turn, make you more aerodynamic.

This is the same logic that leads many runners to shave their body hair. Every follicle is one more impediment toward reaching your best time.

Most of us don’t go this far because running is something we like to do – not something we do for a living.

Nonetheless, if you’re worried that unruly hair is keeping you from the ideal running cadence, I’d suggest that a hat is probably preferable to shaving your head.

5. Running Hats Offer Protection from the Elements

Finally, wearing a hat on your runs is an effective way of keeping the elements from interfering.

If you find yourself running in the rain, the visor will stop those raindrops from getting in your face.

But more often, the element you need to worry about the most is on the opposite end of the spectrum. Running with the sun in your eyes is never fun. It can even be dangerous.

Photokeratitis is a very real risk for those of us who spend a lot of time directly under the sun’s UV rays. That’s why proper UV400 protection is so important if you regularly run outside.

Sunglasses are great for this, but you’ll be even safer if you have the brim of a hat covering your face.

This is why I don’t like traditional running hats that have such short brims. They hardly offer any protection from the elements and are especially lacking when it comes to the sun.

…and they look kind of dumb.

Opt for hats with conventional brims that will do a much better job of keeping the sun in its place (out of your face).

Start Running with a Hat from Now On

At the end of the day, wearing a hat when you go running probably isn’t going to take minutes off your time.

That being said, there are clearly some valuable benefits to running with a hat designed specifically for the sport.

At Runners Athletics, we make running hats that are lightweight, made from hydrophobic material with a moisture-wicking lining. It has breathable side and back panels to keep your head nice and cool and we even included a hidden pocket if you’d prefer taking a credit card with you on your runs just in case.

I like to think they’re pretty stylish, too.

Check them out for yourself and start wearing the perfect hat for your favorite pastime today. 

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