Knuckle Lights are a new approach to running lights. Instead of using the traditional headlamp or carrying a flashlight, Knuckle Lights are handheld lights used to light your path and to be visible to oncoming cars. We received these samples directly from Knuckle Lights. Thanks to them for providing the samples.
About Knuckle Lights:
Knuckle Lights are sold in pairs and are available directly from the manufacturer for $39.99. Each Knuckle Light produces 45 Lumens of light from two AAA batteries. The lights are word on your hands and feature adjustable straps to get the fit just right. The lights are available in 5 colors.
Testing Knuckle Lights:
Oddly enough, our first test wasn’t during a run. Two of your testers, along with a few friends, went for a short hike early one evening. Planning to be back before dark, we didn’t think to pack a flashlight. Before leaving our cars, we made the last minute decision to bring the Knuckle Lights, just in case. Thank God we did. The hike took a bit longer than expected and had we not had the lights, we would have spent the last 3 miles or so groping our way back in the dark.
Other than the unintended testing, we used the Knuckle Lights during a number of our training runs. Some runs began before sunrise and a few lasted until after twilight. Here in Beaufort, the weather is so horrible this time of year that we can only run very early or very late if we want to avoid 90+ degree weather. Some testing was done during twilight or dawn with a bit of ambient light, while other runs had no ambient light. Our run courses occasionally had streetlights, but not always.
Thoughts on Knuckle Lights:
Going into the review, we had a few concerns. First, we were worried about carrying the lights in our hands. One tester truly hates carrying gear on a run and shies away from carrying bottles or the like in his hands while running. Our second concern was the bounce or movement of the lights during a run. Thankfully, neither of these proved to be a problem.
Running while holding the lights was a bit of a change, but both testers became accustomed to the feeling quickly. Even the tester that won’t carry a bottle didn’t find the lights too much of an adjustment. Getting the proper fit and feel decreased the adjustment period. After 5 or 6 runs, the lights were almost unnoticeable.
You will notice a bit of movement in the lights, depending on how you move your arms during a run. The nice thing about Knuckle Lights, and what keeps this movement from getting irritating, is the wide beam of the lights. Even if you move your hands a lot during a run, the wide beams keep the sidewalk bathed in light, no matter how much you move. Both testers also commented on how nice it was to be able to use the lights independently. When running at night, it’s dangerous to turn your head, as you do with a headlamp, to illuminate the side of the road. With Knuckle Lights, you can direct the light out of your normal path without turning your head and taking your eyes off your path.
Unscientifically, we feel that these lights made us more noticeable to cars. We didn’t measure response distances, but in runs that included off sidewalk running, approaching cars seemed to see us earlier. Maybe it’s the moving lights, or maybe it’s having two lights, but drivers seemed to spot us more quickly than with a headlamp or no light source.
Not every runner has to be out before dawn or after dark, but if you do, you should consider these lights. They are very reasonably priced, deliver a lot of light, and are very stingy on battery use. We have used them for dozens of runs, we estimate 70+ miles total, and the first set of batteries are still going strong. The lights seem to be sturdy but aren’t so heavy they weigh you down. The wide beams provide good illumination close and enough light at the sides to see your surroundings. At less than $40, they’re a great value, especially when compared with many high end headlamps.