I saw a few people wearing these at the Run Woodstock 100 miler last year and I wanted to know if they were any good. At first I took the fact that they were not widely available as a bad sign, but I ordered them anyway from KnuckleLights.com (Side Note: "Knuckle" is one of those words, that no matter how many times you look it up, always looks misspelled when it's capitalized). Anyway I ordered them online and was very happy with how quickly they were delivered.
Most of my training runs are done so early in the morning that the sun hasn't even gotten up for his midnight pee. Therefore, it's quite dark when I head out. Unfortunately for me, I have also been cursed with an over-active imagination so the more light the better as far as I'm concerned. You never know what's around the next bend.
That is why I was very happy with the way the knuckle lights cast their light at a lower level than my headlamp, lighting up more than just the six feet of sidewalk ahead of me. It was also nice to be able to shine the light on any object around me without trying to lift up my head and stare down my nose.
My first run with the lights was a very cold December day, so I was wearing gloves but I felt no uncomfortable pinch or binding of the think elastic band. Adjusting them while running, however, turned out to be quite a chore.
On my third run with them, I was blessed with a 50 degree morning, so I was able to try them without gloves. I was surprised to discover they were more uncomfortable without the gloves. To get them adjusted properly while running took a bit of trial and error. It didn't help that I left my head lamp at home so I had to shine one hand on the other to see what I was doing. Eventually I got them just right, but they grew a little bit uncomfortable as my hands started to sweat.
However I was growing quite fond of how I could quickly switch them on or off with the thumb triggers as I passed through differing degrees of darkness. It was also nice to pass runners going the opposite direction without worrying about blinding them with my headlamp.
My fourth run with them was my first run in the woods. This is where I fell in love with them. The larger radius of light was the perfect antidote for my crazy imagination for it held all the nasties at bay. Plus, when you hold your two fists together you feel like Iron Man blasting a beam of light into any rabid rodent that may be stalking you.
If you generally run on roads that are familiar to you, and you aren't afraid of murderous moles or predatory possums then you could probably get by without these. However, if you plan on running trails or have the courage of a five-year-old you may want to pick up a pair.
I will leave you with one last piece of advice. If you do pick up a pair, I'd recommend not leaving your headlamp at home. There may be times when you need light but your hands are busy elsewhere.