A sports bra can make or break your workout. It is important to have a sports bra that suits your workout, your body and your preferences.
Why is it important to wear a sports bra?
The importance of exercise is well known. But for some women, their breasts prevent them from exercising. In a survey of 249 women, 17% said they stopped exercising because they couldn’t find a sports bra that fit or because they were bothered by the movement of their breasts. .??
Minimize breast movement. During vigorous exercises such as running and jumping, unsupported breasts can move up to four inches. This kind of movement can cause back pain or chest pain.??
Research has shown that there is less breast movement and discomfort when wearing high impact sports bras compared to everyday bras. If you have a small breast, you should always wear a sports bra when working out. The researchers found that women with smaller cups also had significant breast movements during exercise.??
Prevent damage to the breasts. Working out without a sports bra can strain the skin on your breasts and stretch the breast tissue. ??
Improve posture. Heavy breasts can pull your body forward and make you sag.
Types of sports bras
There are two main types of sports bras.
- Compression bras. This type of sports bra presses your breasts against your body. It is more suitable for those with smaller cup sizes.
- Encapsulated bras. Like a regular bra, it has two cups to keep the breasts separate for individual support.
How much support do you need?
The amount of help you need depends on:
Age. The elasticity of your skin decreases with age. Your breasts are mainly supported by the skin that covers them. Older women generally need more support from bras than younger women. ??
Type of exercise. The amount of support your breasts need depends on the exercise you are doing. If you do more vertical movements, such as jumping, it can cause more chest movement. ??
Bra size. If you have a larger bra size, you will need a more supported bra.
If you’re younger, have smaller breasts, and do low-impact exercise, a compression bra may work. If you’re older, have large breasts, and exercise more vigorously, such as running, choose a stronger, encapsulated sports bra. You may need different sports bras for different workouts.
How to choose the right sports bra
When buying a sports bra, pay attention to the fit. A good sports bra should minimize chest movement, but it should not be so tight that it affects your breathing. Here are a few things to look out for when buying a sports bra:
- Cut. If you’ve never worn a sports bra, start with your everyday bra size.
- Straps. The shoulder straps should be padded and at least 1 inch wide so that they do not dig in or slip over your shoulders.
- Cups. Make sure your breasts are completely covered by the cups. Choose seamless cups that won’t irritate your nipples.
- Bandaged. The band should be wide and made of a strong elastic material. Larger cup sizes may require wider bands.
- Frame. If you prefer a sports bra with underwire, make sure that the underwire fits properly on your chest.
- Equipment. Choose a synthetic fiber bra like Lycra. These breathe and wick away moisture.
- Comfort. Hooks and closures should be covered with fabric or some kind of cushioning material. Likewise, the covered seams will not rub against your skin. If your skin is sensitive, apply petroleum jelly to areas prone to irritation, such as the rib cage, armpits and shoulders.??
When shopping for a sports bra, try out several different styles and brands. Run in place and jump up and down. This will allow you to see if it is favorable enough.
How to take care of your sports bras
Here’s how to get the most out of your sports bras:
- Rotate your sports bras. This will allow them to keep their shape and elasticity.
- If possible, wash your sports bra and other workout clothes immediately after your workout.
- If you can’t wash it right away, try not to leave your wet gym clothes piled up in your basket or gym bag. Put them where they can dry quickly. This will help prevent bacterial growth and odor.
- Follow the washing instructions on the product label. Some synthetic materials may not be machine washable.
- Do not use fabric softener. This can clog synthetic fibers and stop its ability to wick sweat.
- Do not use hot water or bleach. This can damage the synthetic fibers.
- Place sports bras in a mesh laundry bag so they don’t twist with your other clothes.
- Remember to air dry your sports bras. This will help protect their shape and fit.