7 Fitness Accessories for Safety and Visibility


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
  :  21 comments   :  27,793 Views

One of my favorite times of day to run is in the early morning before the rest of the world wakes up.  It’s quiet and gives me time to think before the craziness of my day begins.  I prefer to run when the sun is already up, but at certain times of the year, that becomes more difficult.  When I do head out in the dark, my first priority is safety.  Although I never assume that cars can see me, I try to make myself as visible as possible.
I hear of too many runners, walkers and bikers out with no lights, no identification, wearing dark colors and expecting that everything will be fine and that cars will gladly move out of their way.  Accidents happen all the time, but you can reduce the chances they will happen to you.  Here are some of the products I recommend to help you stay safe and visible when exercising in the dark.
Road ID Supernova Light

I’ve used this light for a number of years.  It easily clips to your shirt, hat or wherever is most comfortable.  The light is very bright (so put it somewhere you won’t have to see it flashing), and traffic will have no trouble seeing it.  Depending on the conditions, sometimes I’ll use two:  one for oncoming traffic, and one for cars or bikes coming up behind me.    

Reflective Hat

Hats are a nice option when you don’t feel the need for a light (or just want extra visibility) but want to be seen.  Hats are versatile, protecting your face from sun on a bright day, or helping you stand out more easily when it’s dark. 

Trainer Vest

A vest like this one is lightweight and won’t get in the way as you’re walking, running or biking in the dark.  It also has a little tag in the front where you can put your contact information, in case of emergency.  I always thought a vest would be cumbersome until I tried it.  I don’t even notice I’m wearing this one. 

Reflector Tape

This tape allows you to draw attention to any part of you or your equipment.  I find that the majority of my running clothes are black.  So if I don’t have a lot of light-colored options, I can put this tape on my clothes and still get the safety I need.    

Reflector Sleeves

These are especially good for runners and walkers, since your arms are constantly moving.   I find these easily draw attention to me, and I can wear them in a variety of conditions.    


A jacket like this one is nice because it can also double as protection from wind, rain or snow if necessary.  I prefer something lightweight and breathable with pockets that zip so that I have a place to keep my keys and/or identification. 


I have a small I.D. that clips to my running shoe.  It gives my contact information as well as an emergency phone number for my husband.  This product is also reflective.  It’s so important to carry some kind of identification, whether you’re out walking in the middle of a sunny day or on a rainy morning before the sun comes up.  In case something happens, you want people to know who you are, especially if you have any medical conditions.
In addition to wearing the right products to help you stay safe and visible out on the roads, always make sure you’re aware of your surroundings.  If you wear headphones, make sure they are turned down low so you can hear oncoming traffic.  Use crosswalks, sidewalks and bike paths whenever possible.  Always tell someone where you’re going and what time you will be coming back.  Most of these things are common sense, but it’s easy to forget when you’re busy trying to get out the door.  Be a good example and take the time to make sure you’re safe.  You never know who it might be helping.
What are some things you do or wear to make sure you stay safe and visible when exercising outdoors?

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  • SHEZAM101
    Very informational post!! Getting motivated to work out is hard for me. I have been looking for an app that will help me with that and I found SonicSole’s running app. It’s pretty cool and free!
    icsole/id1141835388 - 2/25/2017   12:20:51 PM
  • SHEZAM101
    very informational post! I have just started my fitness regimen. Getting motivated to work out is hard for me. I have been looking for an app that will help me with that and I found SonicSole’s running app. It’s pretty cool and free!
    ole/id1141835388 - 2/25/2017   12:19:57 PM
  • 19
    Headlamps should have been mentioned too. I can't stand to wear a hat (just earmuffs when it's cold) but I don't mind the headlamp. I can see great and I know people can see me too. - 2/14/2017   9:52:33 AM
  • 18
    They make hats with LED lights built right into the brim. You can see where your going and be visible to others. More comfortable too than a headlamp. - 10/8/2016   5:46:34 PM
  • 17
    If I'm out after dark, I carry a flashlight. When a car approaches, I make sure the light is visible to the driver but not right in their eyes, of course. - 4/1/2016   12:44:20 PM
  • 16
    Love that ID clip! No need for reflective items sicne I only wlak in daylight and always with someone else, but that ID clip is good for gym visits, walks, hikes and everything! Thanks for this article!! - 3/26/2016   3:16:40 PM
  • 15
    Where is the headlamp? Cheap enough around $5 Not only can they see you - but ou can see where you are going! - 3/27/2013   4:19:44 PM
  • 14
    as for the flashing lights, you can buy these for dogs, they are the exact same thing for around 5 dollars, i used to have several for my dog, check websites or stores that sell dog products, they work exactly the same - 3/26/2013   11:03:12 PM
  • 13
    Thank you for these ideas. I have been trying to think of what to do since I have fairly dark jackets (my light weight one is black) and I have often wondered about even just crossing a parking lot at night. These will make things much easier for me. - 2/13/2013   12:24:07 PM
  • 12
    I need to make my ID more easily accessible in case of emergency. Don't forget to put ICE on your cell phone - In Case of Emergency contact.
    Safety is a major reason I have a gym membership - better safe than sorry, especially for a female out for a run or walk. - 2/12/2013   9:37:43 PM
  • 11
    I don't have anyone I can think of to call daily when I go walk. I never thought about carrying some kind of ID and phone number along with me in case of an emergency. I walk during the day so reflective to me is not an issue but I am going to find something asap to carry with me showing ID in case something does happen when I am out - 2/12/2013   8:08:58 PM
  • 10
    I'm investing a couple of the lights and some relective tape right now.
    I walk down a rural road from my house to the nearest bus stop 5 days a week before the sun is up! - 2/12/2013   2:28:41 PM
  • 9
    I frequently run/walk at night with my dog, and usually use low-traffic neighborhoods. However, it only takes one car, one second! I also carry a highly reflective leash for my dog. That makes us BOTH more visible! - 2/12/2013   11:05:32 AM
    Thank you for making this post. The scariest thing that ever happened to me involved a morning jogger. I was on my way to work at 4 a.m. on a pitch dark Sunday morning. I turned a corner and came within inches of hitting some guy who was jogging down the center of the road in all dark sweats. Apparently I scared him too because the next week he was wearing a light gray sweatshirt, and he was jogging down the side of the road. Reflective tape and/or lights would be much smarter. - 2/12/2013   10:44:06 AM
  • 7
    Thank you for these tips! - 2/12/2013   12:02:38 AM
    Check out roadid.com. It has different products for identification and visibility. I have a couple of their products and feel a little bit at ease while I wear them while cycling. As I am a road cyclist, I always stress two main principles, visibility and predictability. I do not wear headphones, they are very dangerous, as low the volume might be there is still a big distraction to conditions around you. - 2/11/2013   8:14:51 PM
  • 5
    This is great! I plan on buying the reflective tape to put on my dogs retractable leashes. This way when they are ahead of my (I wear a safety vest), the dogs will be seen too! - 2/11/2013   6:12:21 PM
  • HILLSLUG98239
    I'm a cycle commuter and an occasional morning walker/runner. Anytime I'm on my bike, I carry my insurance ID card. I write my husband's cell phone number on it in permanent ink & covered it with cellophane tape. That way, even if I'm unable to communicate, emergency services can get the ball rolling.

    I believe it's my responsibilty to make myself visible. I've nearly collided with pedestrians and cyclists in the dark because the other party had nothing reflective on. Even a light-colored jacket with no reflective material is better than nothing. Like ZORBS said, you have to assume no one sees you. Getting home is the most important part of your ride/run/walk. - 2/11/2013   2:42:40 PM
  • 3
    One of our neighbors fell as she was out walking her dog this morning. Fortunately she made it to our door just as we were leaving, so we were able to call her husband. She had left her cell phone and ID at home. If we hadn't been home, or if she had been more badly injured, it would have taken awhile to get her help and find her husband. The last item, the ID clip, is the minimum someone should have night OR day! - 2/11/2013   2:19:57 PM
  • 2
    I wear bright colours and assume no driver sees me. But I also do stuff like run in the middle of the road before dawn. - 2/11/2013   12:51:58 PM
    I agree that these are very important items to add to your list of workout gear ! Weather your cycling , walking , running what ever - its a good idea to be seen ! - 2/11/2013   12:28:13 PM

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