With so many on the market, though, you can understand why people ‘swerve them’. With all the shapes and sizes, compression levels, support levels, cross-backs, thick straps, cup fit, front fastenings…the suitable sport bras are easily the most complicated bra category out there. If you choose the wrong fit and you’ll end up at best uncomfortable – at worst doing yourself some serious injury. We’re talking boob-punch to the face or – worse – permanent damage to the delicate muscles in your boobs.
A good guideline is that your sports bra should fit and feel tighter than your normal bra, without being too uncomfortable. You’re exposing the girls to a lot more movement than usual so you need to strap those puppies down a bit more than usual. Don’t be shy about jumping around the changing room when you try yours on .
The first step is to work out what kind of support you’re going to need your sports bra to provide. What sort of exercise do you plan on partaking in? For gentler exercises such as yoga and walking, you don’t need *too* too much in the way of support – a low-impact bra should give you everything you need. For moderate activity like hiking, skiing and cycling, you’ll need a bra that offers more of a medium level of support. And for high-impact sports like running and aerobics, you’ll need a higher level of support.
Choosing a Sports Bra and Why Theyre Essential Invest In Your Chest Encapsulation sports bras have two separate cups and support each breast separately. Generally these are best for low impact exercises, but the likes of Freya and Panache have adopted this style in much of their sports bra varieties. I also tend to prefer this style as you maintain a more ‘natural’ silhouette under clothes.
You’ll also find that there are a dazzling array of features on the sports bra market, and it can be difficult to work out what you need. Generally speaking, cross-backed sports bras give the best balance to the entirety of the breast, which makes them best for high impact activities, while racer back or regular traditional straps are better for slower-paced exercise.
For high impact sports, I tend to look for a bra that seems to give you the best of both worlds – a bra which compresses a bit, but which has individual cups will offer you the very best level of support. I think that’s why I like the Freya Active Underwired so much.
Finally, it’s important that – just as with any bra – your sports bra is the right size. To determine your size, hop over to my blog post all about fitting yourself at home.