We hope that you love our articles and find them useful and informative! In full transparency, we may collect a small commission (at no cost to you!) when you click on some of the links in this post. These funds allow us to keep the site up and continue to write great articles. Click here to learn about our review process and affiliate structure.

The Best Way to Carry Your Phone on a Run


Some runners prefer not to carry their phone with them on a run. But if you like listening to music or want to stay connected in case of an emergency, you’ll probably want to take it along.

Phones are expensive, so it’s in your best interest to keep your phone as safe as possible while running. But what is the best way to carry your phone on a comfortable, safe run that doesn’t make you a target for would-be muggers?

The good news is that there are multiple ways to carry your phone while running. There’s no right or wrong here. It all comes down to what feels comfortable to you.

Consider these options for carrying your phone safely so you can have complete peace of mind running with your fragile smartphone!

Arm Bands

You couldn’t step out for a run or go to the gym without seeing multiple people wearing phone armbands! They’re still quite common because they work well to keep your phone safe and secure while you’re moving.

A phone armband usually fits around the upper arm and can be used on either side, depending on your preference. Just make sure the armband you buy fits your phone.


  • Usually have a touch-ready plastic cover
  • Most include a slot to carry cards or cash
  • Some are reflective, great for night runs
  • Customizable size to suit most arms
  • Come in a variety of colors


  • May not fit unusually thin or muscular arms
  • It can bounce or chafe if not properly tightened
  • The band may stretch out over time

Our Pick: Amphipod Armpod Smartview Sumo Armband

This armband offers full-screen access with easy touch control. You can use your phone like normal without needing to take it out of the holder, but it’s still protected from accidental touches.

It fits fairly large phones (just check that it can accommodate yours), and there’s a handy storage pocket aside from the phone pocket that can securely hold credit cards, cash, a key, or even an energy chew or two.

Available in various colors and with an easy-to-adjust stretch armband, it suits almost anyone. Other great features include a “cord keeper” pocket for safe storage of excess cord and the ability to detach from the armband and attach to a belt.


Hand Strap Holder

If you prefer having a firm grip on your phone but don’t want to risk it slipping out of your hand when you work up a sweat, a hand strap holder could be the right thing for you.

This is similar to an armband, but instead of wrapping the strap around your upper arm, you wrap it around your hand, so the phone sits comfortably in your palm but is held in place by the strap.

It’s great if you want the option to access your phone directly while running, as it’s just as easy as lifting your hand as you normally would with your phone.


  • Convenient and easy to access to your phone if you need
  • It can help to wick away moisture on your hand
  • Some have space to carry cards, cash, etc
  • You always know that your phone is safe!


  • It may throw you off balance having extra weight on one side
  • It can cause your hand to get very warm
  • Leaves only one hand free for drinking water, nutrition, etc
  • If you’re using corded headphones, the running motion may pull on them

Our Pick: Nathan Vista Handheld Phone Carrier

The Nathan Vista Handheld Phone Carrier is our top choice. It’s made of high-quality, moisture-wicking material and has an ergonomic design and a comfortable grip with a thumb hole that stays put even if you aren’t actively gripping your phone.

It can fit most phones, even large ones, and there’s a handy and easily accessible headphone jack in the holder so you can listen to music. The touchscreen is easy to access if you do need to do anything on your phone while running.


Running Belts

A running belt is a popular choice for carrying your important items while running. The waistband design allows you to have both hands free at all times, and it’s still easy to access if you need something.

You won’t be able to get to your phone screen if you need to do something on your phone. But it’s secure, stable, and convenient. Running belts are the most minimalistic of the belt choices, without hydration options, just storage.


  • Convenient and comfortable to wear with a phone inside
  • Many different designs available to suit every person
  • Versatile enough to carry other items along with your phone
  • It can be worn under or over clothing
  • It can be worn in front, back, or even on the side hips


  • May feel slightly uncomfortable if packed full
  • It can bounce a little if it’s heavy
  • It might be a tight fit for larger phones

Our Pick: The Original SPIbelt

The Original SPIbelt is a no-fuss choice available in over 20 different colors and patterns. If you want to stay fashionable and comfortable, we highly recommend this running belt.

The waistband is light and stretchy but can be easily adjusted to suit your waist. The buckle clip keeps it secure, and you can adjust it on the go if necessary.

An expandable pocket fits most phones, and you may be able to slip in a credit card, some cash, and an energy gel as well.


Hydration Belts

A hydration belt is a more versatile version of a running belt. It’s a bit bulkier but includes space to carry water with you. It’s a great choice for longer runs, allowing you to easily carry water and other items, including your phone.

You can upgrade this to a hydration pack if you like. This backpack-like storage holds a larger amount of water and offers space for carrying other items.


  • Versatile belt with storage space for hydration and other items
  • Excellent choice for longer runs that need more hydration
  • Generally, offer enough space for a large phone and other items
  • Most have water-resistant pouches to keep your valuables safe


  • It may bounce a little due to carrying water
  • As you drink, the belt will get lighter, which may require adjustment
  • Can’t wear underneath clothing

Our Pick: Ultimate Direction Ultra Belt

This hydration belt can carry up to 1 liter of liquid in two soft flasks, plenty for a moderate to long-distance run. A large weather- and water-resistant pouch can hold your phone and a few other valuables between the two bottles.

The bottles and pouch are designed to go behind you. There’s a key pouch on the soft, adjustable waistband in the front to hold them securely and provide easy access.


Handheld Water Bottle Pocket

This is handy if you prefer to carry your water bottle instead of having it on your belt. The phone holder gadget simply attaches right to the bottle, so you’re basically holding your water bottle and your phone in your hand at the same time.

It’s fairly secure, as it straps around your hand, so you don’t even need to grip it. As your phone is already in your hand, it’s easy to access if you need it while you’re running.


  • Makes your phone easily accessible at all times
  • Hand strap means you don’t have to grip your water bottle
  • The phone is safe and secure in a zippered pocket
  • Space to carry cards, cash, or sachets in the pocket as well


  • Not easy to use wired earphones with this phone holder
  • It may not be compatible with all water bottles (most come with their own specific water bottle)
  • It could be a little bulky and uncomfortable

Our Pick: Nathan SpeedView Plus Insulated 18oz Flask with Phone Case

With an 18 oz insulated water bottle featuring a quick-burst cap, you’ll have more than enough hydration for a moderate-length run. The bottle itself is made of reflective material, so it will help if you like to run at night or in the early morning.

The attached pouch is hardy and features an easy-to-access touchscreen. A solid strap also goes around your hand, so you don’t have to grip the bottle hard yet it stays secure in your hand.


Wrist Band Wallet

A wristband wallet is inconspicuous and easy to wear. It’s excellent for small items like cards, money, and little nutrition items like energy gels or electrolyte tablets. They look pretty cool and come in many colors and patterns. You can get one for every outfit!

The only potential downside is that bigger phones may not be able to fit comfortably in them without hurting your wrist and being uncomfortable.


  • Keeps your phone secure and safe while running
  • Easy to access if you need to grab your phone in a hurry
  • Keeps your valuables relatively out of sight unless you have a bulky phone
  • Versatile enough to wear any time, anywhere


  • May only fit smaller phones
  • Could be uncomfortable with a phone inside
  • It may feel a little warm on your wrist

Our Pick: Sprigs Banjees 2

The Sprigs Banjees 2 is available in many different colors and patterns, so there’s something to suit everyone. It features one spacious zippered pocket, which is ideal for a moderately-sized phone, and a foldover pocket, which is good for things like money or nutrition items.

It’s made of soft spandex, making it easy to get over your wrist and keep on without chafing or discomfort.


Shorts to Carry a Phone

If you’re not interested in any sort of fancy phone-carrying items and would prefer to just use your regular shorts, you can do so. But not all pairs of shorts are made to be safe for a phone, so choose wisely.

The biggest annoyance with looser shorts is that the phone may bounce around as you’re running. Thankfully, most pairs of shorts these days have a large pocket in the middle of the back, which safely holds your phone with no bouncing.


  • Convenient, as you’re likely to be wearing shorts anyway
  • You can choose from a variety of styles and colors to suit you
  • Many pairs of shorts also have a separate key pocket


  • May be uncomfortable with your phone against your back
  • Some shorts don’t have a back pocket but bouncy side pockets instead

Our Pick: Brooks Sherpa 7” (men), Brooks Chaser 7″ (women)

These pairs of shorts aren’t skin-tight, but they’re not too loose either. They should be comfortable enough to allow for a good range of motion, and they both have roomy back pockets that are zippered for safety and large enough to fit most phones

You can also choose from various colors to suit your style and personality. The material is sweat-wicking and soft, which reduces the chance of chafing.


Sports Bra With a Pocket

A wristband wallet is inconspicuous and easy to wear. It’s excellent for small items like cards, money, and little nutrition items like energy gels or electrolyte tablets. They look pretty cool and come in many colors and patterns. You can get one for every outfit!

The only potential downside is that bigger phones may not be able to fit comfortably in them without hurting your wrist and being uncomfortable.


  • Built into a piece of gear you’ll already be using on every run
  • Inconspicuous and keeps your phone out of view
  • Close enough to wear earphones comfortably and easily
  • The back pocket should be out of the way and not chafe


  • Unless you want to wash it between every run, you may need to buy more than one, so your phone is always safe
  • Your phone could get sweaty
  • The phone isn’t easy to access in a hurry
  • May not be the best choice for those who aren’t flexible

Our Pick: Brooks Drive 3 Pocket Run Bra

This bra is an excellent choice for ladies who are flexible enough to use it! It’s made of compression material to keep you secure throughout your run and features mesh pockets on the sides for extra breathability.

Two armpit pockets—one on either side—give you more than enough space to carry a key, gels, money, and so on. Your phone slides neatly down between your shoulder blades, out of the way and bounce-free.

The only potential issue we see is that the phone is not easily accessible on the go. You need to be quite flexible to reach it, and it could also be affected by moisture if you sweat a lot.


How to Not Carry Your Phone

In Your Hand

You may think this is the best way to keep your phone secure, but the truth is it leaves your phone more open to damage.

If your hands sweat while you run, there’s a chance of your phone slipping out of your grasp and falling to the ground. It can also throw you a little off balance as you’re holding a (slightly) heavy object on one side.

In Small Pockets

Be careful what pockets you choose to place your phone in. Many pairs of shorts have a large, zippered back pocket designed specifically to securely fit a phone.

However, some pairs of shorts only have small, thin pockets without zippers. It can be tempting to slide your phone into one of these, but the lack of a solid closure leaves it open to falling out and being damaged.

In Your Waistband Lining

Even if your waistband is quite tight, carrying your phone between yourself and your waistband is not secure. There’s a high likelihood of the phone wiggling its way out as you run due to friction between the phone, your skin, and the waistband as you move.

In Your Sports Bra

Some sports bras have dedicated phone pockets, making it very handy. If you have one of these, you can easily carry your phone in your sports bra with little worry of it falling out or hurting you.

However, regular sports bras are not designed to hold a phone. There’s a high chance of it bouncing out while you’re running, or if you have it secured, it becomes a chafing hazard and can cause pressure points.

In Your Sock

It seems counterintuitive to carry your phone in your sock, but some runners try it! Not only is it more likely to fall out while you’re moving, but it’s also more likely to cause pain or discomfort while running.

Ben Drew

Ben Drew

Ben is an avid road and trail runner, and has completed multiple marathons and ultras. A former running store owner, he now shares his knowledge and experience writing these articles.

The Wired Runner