If you’re a trail runner, you know how important it is to see the path ahead of you. Whether you’re running trails at dawn, dusk, or in the middle of the night, having reliable trail running lights in the form of headlamps or body lamps can make or break your running experience. In this post, we’ll discuss the best head and body torches for trail runners, so you can brighten your path and stay safe on the trails.

Why Proper Lighting is Crucial for Trail Running

When it comes to trail running, proper lighting is more than just a luxury – it’s a crucial element for a safe and enjoyable experience. Whether you’re hitting the trails at dawn, dusk, or even in the dark of night, having reliable illumination can make all the difference. In fact, it’s an integral part of your kit.

One of the main reasons why proper lighting is crucial for trail running is visibility. Trails can be filled with obstacles like roots, rocks, and uneven terrain that can be hazardous if you can’t see them clearly. A good headlamp or bodylamp will not only help you see the path ahead but also make sure you’re aware of any potential dangers or obstacles.

Another important aspect of proper lighting is safety. With the right lights, you’ll be more visible to other trail users, such as hikers, bikers, and other runners. This reduces the risk of accidents and helps maintain a safe environment for everyone on the trails.

Lastly, proper lighting enhances your overall trail running experience. It allows you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of nature, even when the sun is nowhere to be seen. It provides a sense of security and peace of mind, enabling you to focus on your run without worrying about what’s lurking in the darkness.

In the next sections, we’ll explore the different types of trail running lights, highlight the top headlamps and body lamps available, discuss factors to consider when choosing the right light for you and provide tips on maintenance and care. So, let’s brighten your path and make your trail running adventures even better with the best lights on the market!

Types of Trail Running Lights

When it comes to trail running lights, there are a variety of options to choose from. The two main types are headlamps or head torches and bodylamps.

Headlamps are the most common choice for trail runners as they provide a hands-free lighting solution. They are typically worn on the forehead and illuminate the path ahead. Headlamps come in various brightness levels, allowing you to adjust the intensity based on the conditions and your preferences. Some headlamps also have adjustable beams, allowing you to focus the light where you need it most.

Body lamps, on the other hand, are worn on the torso or waist and provide lighting from a different perspective. These lights are designed to light up the immediate area around you, rather than just the path ahead. Bodylamps are great for illuminating obstacles or uneven terrain that might be missed with a headlamp alone.

Both headlamps and body lamps can come with additional features like red or strobe lights for increased visibility, adjustable straps for a secure fit, and rechargeable batteries for convenience. The best type of trail running light for you will depend on your personal preferences and specific needs.

In the next sections, we’ll dive deeper into the top headlamp and bodylamp options for trail runners, as well as the factors to consider when choosing the right light for you. So, let’s continue brightening your path and making your trail running adventures even better with the best lights on the market!

Top Headlamps for Trail Running

When it comes to choosing the best headlamp for your trail running adventures, there are several options that stand out. One top choice is the Petzl IKO Core Headlamp. With its powerful 500-lumen output, this headlamp provides bright and consistent illumination, ensuring that you can see the path ahead clearly. It also has a comfortable and secure fit, thanks to its adjustable strap system. Another great option is the Black Diamond Sprint 225 Headlamp, which offers a maximum brightness of 225 lumens and has a variety of lighting modes to suit different conditions. Its sleek design and easy-to-use controls make it a favorite among trail runners. I

Black Diamond Sprint 225 Headlamp

This extremely compact, rechargeable headlamp is great for the runner who wants to travel light. On it’s max setting it produces 225 lumens and is tested to withstand rain and sleet from any angle. 






FENIX HL18R-T Trail Running and Outdoors Headlamp 

The Fenix HL18R-T is a headlamp specifically designed for trail running but can also be used for various other outdoor activities such as hiking and camping. The headlamp comes equipped with an innovative “SPORT” headband system, which has been designed to provide optimal convenience and reliability for users. The headband can be easily adjusted with a single hand, ensuring maximum comfort even while on the move. The headband has been designed with a hollow structure, which offers flexibility and breathability to the wearer. Additionally, reflective material has been added to the headband, ensuring the wearer is visible and safe whilst running on the road or trail. The headlamp features dual output modes for added convenience.


fenix headlamp



Petzl IKO Core Headlamp

With 500 lumens you can use a rechargeable battery or 3x AAA. It is simple to use, not too bulky, and has a range of 100 metres. 


head torch for running



Energizer Vision Ultra HD Headlamp

This lightweight, rechargeable headlamp comes with a USB charging cable and is ideal fro the runner who is on a budget and perhaps looking to test the water.

head torch for trail running



Best Body Lamps for Trail Running

Many runners choose to wear their lights on their chest rather than their head. We take a look at some of the best options available for those that prefer a body lamp. 

Avanto Pro Chest Running Light

The AVANTO PRO Running Chest Light is USB-C rechargeable with a powerful 500-lumen chest light which features a 90° adjustable beam placed lower on the chest, enhancing shadow visibility on the ground.

running body lamp


LED Armbands for Running

These USB rechargeable, reflective armbands offer high visibility for runners and they are no fuss. Just slap them on and they stick! 




Night Runner 270 Shoe Lights

With USB rechargeable batteries which last from 2-5 hours, these shoe lights produce a lot of lights with up to 150 lumens.

cilp on shoe lights


Apace Vision EverLightFX Clip-On Lights


clip on lights


Factors to Consider When Choosing Trail Running Lights

When it comes to choosing a trail running light, there are several factors to consider to ensure you find the best option for your needs. The first factor to think about is brightness. You’ll want a light that provides enough illumination to clearly see the path ahead, especially if you’re running in low-light or dark conditions. Look for a light with a high-lumen output for optimal brightness.

Another important factor is battery life. You don’t want your light to die out in the middle of your run, so choose a light with a long-lasting battery or one that is rechargeable. Consider how long you typically run for and choose a light that can provide enough power for the duration of your runs.

Comfort and fit are also crucial factors. Look for lights with adjustable straps or bands that can be easily customized to fit your head or body securely. You don’t want your light to bounce around or become uncomfortable during your run.

Lastly, consider additional features that may be important to you. Some lights have adjustable beams or different lighting modes, allowing you to customize the lighting based on the conditions. Others may have red or strobe lights for increased visibility. Think about what features are important to you and choose a light that meets those needs.

By considering factors such as brightness, battery life, comfort, fit, and additional features, you’ll be able to choose the perfect trail running light that will enhance your experience and keep you safe on the trails.

Maintenance and Care for Trail Running Lights

As a trail runner, taking care of your equipment is just as important as the run itself. When it comes to your trail running lights, proper maintenance and care will ensure they last longer and perform at their best. Here are some tips to keep your lights in top shape:

1. Regularly clean your lights: Dirt, sweat, and grime can build up on your lights, affecting their performance. Take the time to wipe down the exterior with a damp cloth and gently clean the lens with a lens cleaner or a microfiber cloth.

2. Store them properly: When not in use, store your lights in a cool, dry place. Avoid leaving them in extreme temperatures or in direct sunlight, as this can damage the batteries and other components.

3. Check the batteries: Regularly inspect the batteries in your lights to ensure they are in good condition. Replace them as needed and avoid leaving old batteries in your lights for an extended period of time.

4. Keep them dry: While many trail running lights are designed to be water-resistant, it’s still important to keep them as dry as possible. Wipe off any moisture after your runs and avoid submerging them in water.

By following these simple maintenance and care tips, you can extend the lifespan of your trail running lights and continue to enjoy bright and reliable illumination on your trail running adventures.