Studies show that 8/10 women wear the wrong bra size. This makes it likely that the level of support for the breasts is not sufficient, especially during intensive training. In addition to (permanently) damage the sensitive breast tissue, it has been found that a lack of or incorrect support also affects performance and increases the risk of injury. To compensate for the movement of the breasts, it has been found that many women lean forward, take smaller steps, change their breathing or simply avoid certain forms of movement altogether. This may affect both the performance and increase risk of injury. Therefore, it is extra important to put some extra effort into finding right size and fit of your sports bra!
It is not easy to choose a sports bra with the right size, fit and function and many parameters play into the choice of a sports bra. The shape of the breasts, the cup size, the level of support and individual factors such as taste and personal preferences are all important factors. Start by deciding on whether to use the sports bra for high or low intensity workouts.
If you practice both, we’d suggest investing in two different sports bras, designed for low and high impact training respectively. To extend the longevity of the sports bra, we recommend alternating between a couple of different ones to minimize the number of washes and straining on the elasticity of the fabric.
We’d also recommend spending an extra bit of time on choosing the correct size. Finding the right size is of great importance for both fit and function of the sports bra.
HIGH IMPACT TRAINING
During exercise, a woman's torso moves in many different directions at different speeds. Since breasts contain no muscle and have limited internal support, they are essentially a mass of soft tissue that moves independently of, but is driven by, the motion of the torso. It's this movement that sports bras work to reduce, altering the underlying mechanics to minimize the breasts' motion independent of the rest of the body. This can minimize discomfort or pain, and even improve sports performance.
About 80% of the support from a sports bra comes from the band and roughly 20% from the shoulder straps. It is important to make sure the band sits tight around the body and that the straps are adjusted properly. For larger breasts, we recommend a cup with an underwire that enclose the entire breast. Make sure the cups do not bulge or gape.
A sports bra should fit slightly tighter than a regular bra. To make sure the fit of the band is snug, we recommend a sports bra with hooks in the back rather than a sports bra that is put on over the head. The bra should fit tight on the loosest hook. Move to the next hook as the elasticity changes over time.
It is easy to forget that the breasts move downwards, to the sides and upwards during exercise. For support in every direction, avoid a sports bra with a low neckline. Our sports bra High Support sports bra and Max Support sports bra are designed to provide high support for all movement of the breast tissue, even for high impact training. Both have hooks in the back, have adjustable straps, have cups with an underwire and are available in B-cup to H-cup (High Support) and C-cup to F-cup (Max Support).
A common mistake is that the band of your sports bra (and regular bra) is too large and the cup is too small. A sports bra should sit tight on the loosest hook. Keep in mind that your sports bra should be a little tighter than your regular bra. The underwire should not dig in, ride up on your breast, or feel uncomfortable. It should sit flat and comfortably against your body, and fully under your breast for comfortable support.
For a bust with smaller volume we recommend a compressive sports bra. Avoid a sports bra with molded cups and underwires as there is a chance that the breasts tissue will not fill the cup. A gaping cup means non-sufficient support. We recommend trying our Compression sports bra that is available in A/B cup and C/D cup in the sizes 65-95.
LOW IMPACT TRAINING
For low intensity workouts, in addition to choosing the right size and fit, we recommend taking the following aspects into consideration. For full flexibility and space for deep breathing we recommend avoiding unnecessary straps and hooks. A soft, padded sports bra is the perfect choice for low impact workouts. Our seamless products are ideal! They are made feel light on the body and provide comfortable support.
To assist us in our product development, we’ve consulted a panel of women with different body shapes, sizes and exercise habits. With their help, we have developed new products, made changes to existing products and have had the assortment evaluated. Read a few of their reviews, tips and recommendations in our sports bra test!