As a woman that loves physical activity, one of the essential gears that you should add to your exercise kit is a high-quality sports bra. It doesn’t matter whether you are hitting the treadmill in your home or at the local gym or completing a yoga session, a good sports bra is crucial when performing exercises. If you do not wear one or wear a loose-fitting ordinary bra, it can damage the tissue surrounding your breast as a result of the inevitable bounce of your chest. This could also lead to breast and back pain.
Additionally, the Cooper’s Ligaments which are responsible for making your breasts to remain firm on your chest can be broken or stretched, thus causing permanent sagging. This is something that no woman wants, especially if you are still very young. Therefore, whether you are performing low or high impact exercise (more on that later), you should make sure that you wear a high-quality sports bra and should be one of the first items that should be thrown into your gym bag every morning.
When you visit brick and mortar shops or go online, you will be amazed at the myriad of stylish sports bras that are on the market nowadays. Each one is uniquely designed, strappy, and colorful. This makes it difficult for most women who are active sports enthusiasts to select the best sports bra that provides comfort, durability, and support.
The Shock Absorber Ultimate Fly Sports Bra was launched during summer in 2017 and is one of the latest additions to the Shock Absorber line of products. This sports bra offers high-impact support and is perfect for boxing workouts, gym classes as well as for HIIT training.
The Ultimate Fly Sports Bra offers the cobwebby effect as a result of the laser-cut bonded and molded cups which help to support your boobs and absorb excess movement. It is manufactured using light fabric which assists in keeping the weight down. When compared to its counterpart, the Fly Sports Bra is about 16% lighter and also offers more comfort. Additionally, it is not as restrictive as other types of the sports bra.
The Shock Absorber Ultimate RUN Sports Bra is an award-winning bra that has become an object of idolization among young women. This is probably as a result of its enormous range of sizes which stretch from sizes 30As to 38Gs.
The RUN Sports Bra is considered the best workhorse sports bra that is suitable for almost all types of physical activity. So, if you are a marathoner or a jogger, this sports bra is for you. It comes with a specially designed support system – infinity 8 – which dramatically minimizes bounce, even in bigger sizes.
The straps of the Ultimate RUN Sports Bra are wide and can be fastened in two places, giving no room for slippage of any kind whenever you are sprinting. To reduce chafing, the inner is very smooth. It even comes with reflective detailing for extra visibility.
The Panache Underwire Sports Bra is designed with wicking fabric – as most sports bras should be – but its uniqueness lies in separating your breasts to prevent pooling. If you have large or close-set breasts, wearing just any sports bra can make your cleavage unattractively sweaty. The Panache Underwire Sports Bra was designed to take care of this annoyance. Although they can be uncomfortable if you go for long runs, they are ideal for workouts or exercise classes.
The Panache Underwire Sports Bra comes with seamless cups which prevents unappealing mono-boob along with broad and supportive straps. It also comes with an adjustable clip which gives you the option of wearing a sports bra with two straps or as a racer back. Racerback, according to exercise enthusiasts, is the best option for workouts if gym machines are not your cup of tea.
This impressive workout sports bra is highly regarded as one of the best among the top-quality bras in the industry. It comes with a lightweight racerback compression style which provides excellent support regarding flexibility. It is ideal for you, whether you are stretching, running or jumping.
The Absolute Workout Sports Bra does not come with those annoying tags which are always itchy during workouts and offers medium support for users. It has all the best features associated with a good sports bra which are: ease of wear, style, and comfort. The Absolute Workout Sports Bra is machine-washable and very easy to care for.
The Absolute Workout Sports Bra is made of fabric that allows you to breathe easily and is very affordable. It is available in multiple colors so that you can buy the same type of sports bra but in different colors to complement your sports gear.
If you are a large woman, then the Glamorise Women’s No-Bounce Sports Bra is the ideal fit for you. It is not as expensive as other sports bras, yet is made of high-quality fabric, designed beautifully and fits snugly.
The Glamorise Women’s No-Bounce Sports Bra comes in five different types which include:
- No-Bounce Cami Bra
- Ultimate Full Figure Bra
- Double Layer Custom Control Bra
- Low Impact Cami Bra
- High Impact Zipper Bra
The Glamorise Women’s No-Bounce Sports Bra is made of wicking fabric which sucks excess moisture away from your skin during workouts along with adjustable straps. It is also machine-washable and available in colors such as black/pink, Malibu blue, white, and café.
Sports Bra Buying Guide
To find the best sports bra is not an easy feat unless you know the exact type or the perfect sports bra that fits you. As you are probably aware, to experience successful workouts from time to time requires the use of a fitting sports bra and it is as vital as a pair of trainers. The effects of gravity do not forgive easily, and that is why it is highly essential for you to arm yourself against them. But if you don’t, severe damage could take place when the ligaments that make your breast firm are stretched beyond limits. Once those ligaments are extended, there is nothing you can do to bring the ligaments back to their original shape.
According to a research conducted at the University of Portsmouth a few years ago, regular bras are sufficient enough to lessen breast bounce by about 38%. But a sports bra can do the same job by more than 78%. A study has also revealed that G cups can bounce up to approximately 14cms while A cups can only bounce up to 4cms.
As a woman, it is essential for you to own a sports bra as part of your lingerie because you can never know when you may need one. An activity as simple as walking may require you to wear one. It is also vital for you to wear a sports bra irrespective of the sizes of your breasts; but the more prominent your bust is, the more crucial it is for you to wear one since you will need more support.
The Importance of Wearing A Sports Bra
So, you must be asking yourself that why is it important for you to wear a sports bra when performing exercises? When a woman engages in physical activity, her chest significantly moves much more than you envisage. The up-and-down movement of her breasts – which is somewhat similar to a figure-8 pattern of movement – doesn’t do her breasts any good. The breasts can also move forwards and backwards as well as from left to right which does untold harm to the ligaments around her bust. Breasts are composed of natural, fatty tissue and are supported by ligaments. But these ligaments can stretch after a while, especially if you are engaging in strenuous physical activity or exercise without using adequate support. Although wearing fitting sports bra cannot eliminate the fact that the ligaments holding the breast will eventually yield their elasticity as time goes on, it will slow down the process in its entirety.
The importance of buying a sports bra that fits correctly cannot be overemphasized. If the sports bra is too large, it will not provide the adequate support that you need or prevent the excessive movement of your breasts. There is a broad range of sports bras that are available on the market today, and each one comes with a different level of support for your breasts. Experts advise that you go for sports bras that are available in regular bra sizes since this method will allow you to get access to a more appropriate fit easily.
The following are the tricks and tips you should follow whenever you want to buy a sports bra:
There are two types of sports bras: the encapsulation bra and the compression bra.
#1: Compression Sports Bra
Compression sports bras are designed for A to C cups and are worn over the head as against clipping at the back. The design of compression bras is such that they squash your breasts into your chest, thereby minimizing their up-and-down movement.
Although compression sports bras are more popular than its counterpart – the encapsulation sports bra – they do not have adequate support, especially for D+ cup sizes. Nine times out of ten, if a sports bra can be worn over the head and shoulders, then it is not firm enough to support D+ cup breasts during exercises. Besides this issue, compression sports bras do not make allowances for the movement of your breasts from left to right, and this can also cause damage to the ligaments of your breasts.
#2: Encapsulation Sports Bra
Encapsulation sports bras are designed like conventional sports bras as they have individual cups which are intended to minimize the crossover movement from your breasts. Thus, encapsulation sports bras fight the sag gallantly. Compression sports bras come in a range of sizes – from small, medium to large – encapsulation sports bras give you the option of choosing your precise cup as well as back size. These are crucial for creating the appropriate balance of support between the back band and the bra straps.
Benefits of choosing encapsulation sports bras
Along with selecting the ideal sports bra for you, you need to take some considerations into account, especially if your bust is on the large side. During the selection process, take a gander at straps of the sports bra. The more extensive they are, the better for you as these straps will help in the distribution of the weight of your breasts. Check to see if those straps are adjustable and come with some padding. If this is the case, then this could be the perfect sports bra for you.
Remember that it was mentioned earlier that sports bras with clasps at the back offer more support and are the best choice compared to the type that you wear over your head and shoulders. Along with this is the fact that sports bras with multiple rows of hooks at the back offer more support via the back band. Therefore, do not be surprised if you come across a sports bra with about four to five rows of hooks on the back band.
#3: Underwired sports bra
Another type of sports bra that bears mentioning is the underwired sports bra. It is flexible and very pliable as it moves with your body. Underwired sports bras effectively cup each breast separately, thus minimizing tissue damage. The wire therein shouldn’t pinch or poke out but should lay flat against your body.
Some sports bras are made of specialized fabrics – known as wicking fabrics – which help to pull excess moisture away from your body during physical activity. But it is usually effective in sturdy sports bras when it comes to wicking moisture away from your skin.
Sizing Rules of Sports Bras
Finding the exact size of your sports bra is not rocket science: just go ahead with the selection just as if you were to select the size of your regular day-to-day bra. However, it may call for some trial and error, especially when finding which one fits well or not. If this is your first time of purchasing a sports bra, then it is recommended that you go for your natural size. Don’t be tempted to choose a sports bra with small cups, thinking that they will provide the best support for your breasts. If the cups of your sports bra are too small, it would cause you untold discomfort and can cause more harm than do good for your breasts.
When buying your sports bra, keep in mind that it should be more encompassing and firmer than your regular bra. This, however, does not imply that the cups of your sports bra should be small.
Fitting Tips of Sports Bra
When trying on a few sports bras to find the best size that is perfect for you, you need to utilize some tricks and tips to make sure you end up with the best one for you. The first trick to use is to put a finger under the band and then give it a pull. The band of a good sports bra should not move more than half an inch away from your torso. If this happens, then it implies you have to go down a back size.
Next, lift up your arms in the air when trying on the sports bra. If the band moves up when you do this, it also means that the back side has to go down. Finally, you can jump up and down a few times while trying the new sports bra on. If there is little to no movement of your breasts when you do this, it means that the sports bra is doing its job well.
Signs You are Wearing the Wrong Sports Bra
Do you even know how to tell if you the sports bra on you is a wrong one? These are few things that could be pointing to the fact that you need to change your bra because you are wearing a wrong one:
- You are discomfort: you can become uncomfortable when there is insufficient support, when the bra is too tight, too lose, or has an underwire.
- When your bra is too old: when you wear a sports bra for more than 5 months, it starts to lose it support and elasticity. To extend the life-span of your bras, you should consider hand-washing them to other options and change them in not less than a year.
- When your sport bras don’t fit right: perhaps you have clinched the strap on the tightest hook or it rides up in the back. However, this are signs that the band which does the most support is lose and you should consider changing it.
- Uniboob:if your sports bra pushes your boobs together, then it is a wrong bra for you. Any sports bra you use should give support to your breast individually.
- Are the Straps Painful: your bras should provide the required support your breasts need during exercise and not dig into your skin. If that happens, you need to change your bra.
- Your nipples are visible: if your nipples are poking through your bra, it means the molding of the is too faded or light. It could also mean the padding has fallen out.
- Difficult to take off: if you struggle to get out of your bra, it means you are not wearing the right size of bra.
- Painful breast after your workout: if your breast is not providing the right support, it makes your breast dang around during workout and could lead pains when the workout is over.
- When your breast is too cheap: you need to invest in more quality bras. Your bras shouldn’t be the cheapest item of your clothing.
- If your breast spills out of the bra: especially when you are doing inversion poses or bending over, if your bra doesn’t keep your breast securely in place but spilling it out, it means you are wearing a bra with the wrong size cups.
How to Make Your Sports Bra Last
Even though sports bras have long durability compared to regular bras, it still requires that you care for it and keep them in good conditions to ensure they serve you for a longer time. The following tips will help you use your sport bras for long:
Only hand wash:wash your bras using warm water and endeavor not to scrub too hard. When you use machines to wash your bras, it will hasten the wear and tear of the bras and cause a you to replace it too soon. If you must dry it using the machine, consider running it on the cold cycle.
Consider a variety of bra choices: do you have just a sport bra you use for everything? That’s not very good. You should have around 5-8 to enable you switch between them. This will allow you get the most out of your bras and also extend their lifespan.
Select the right bras that fit your activity: this is a vital point to note, especially if you are the type with larger breasts. Based on the type of exercise you do, find sports bras with the right support, impact, fit, and compression.
Consider replacing your bras regularly: there is an average lifespan for your bras. It could be up to 6 to 15 months, depending on use and care. However, when you start noticing some signs of wear, it’s time you consider replacing them.
A Quick Summary of Why You Need to Invest in a Quality Sports Bra
- Less bounce – This is perhaps, the number one benefit of wearing sports bras. Therefore, it doesn’t matter the size of your chest; always wear a sports bra before engaging in any physical activity to prevent or minimize damage to the ligaments holding up your breasts.
- Comfort – When you wear the right sports bra, you feel or become more comfortable, thus enabling you to perform exercises that could otherwise be cumbersome
- Exercise becomes easy – Wearing a fitting sports bra makes you perform exercises easily and erases any concern you may have about perverts ogling at them during your workout session.
- Reduces sweat – A majority of the sports bras are made with wicking materials which keep your skin from moisture. By wicking away excess moisture, you will not be bothered with issues about sweat. Some high-quality sports bras even make sure that your skin is not entirely dry.
- Control temperature – A good sports bra also helps to keep your body at the right temperature, keeping your skin dry and fresh.