Do you exercise in your everyday bra, or a bra you know doesn’t support you enough? Or worse, do you wear TWO sports bras (yes, I know more than a few ladies who used to do this)? Chances are, you’ve likely experienced chafing, pinching, red marks, slipping straps, and/or sore breasts, all caused by being physically active in an everyday bra that is not designed for the job.
Your breasts deserve a great sports bra. So you need to know how to find the right kind of style for your athletic needs, to make sure you’re giving your breasts the right support, fit and comfort. Not to mention, sports bras offer moisture management, welded and seamless parts that prevent chafing from friction, and wider straps, often crossed or in racerback shape, that anchor the frame when the arms are lifted. Yes, you can actually work out without thinking about how much your breasts are jiggling! Well, now that I said it, after you find your perfect sports bra, then you’ll probably be thinking about how amazing it is that your breasts are actually contained.
Here are my recommendations on finding the right sports bra for you, depending on the intensity of your physical activity.
If you’re a fan of yoga, pilates, stretching and walking, you’re a great candidate for a light intensity sports bra. Usually these bras offer light to medium support and are ideal for activities that don’t require too much jumping around. Some of my customers also tell me they like to wear these types of bras for things like cleaning around the house or gardening, or even as an everyday comfort bra. The reason why is because the majority of light intensity sports bras are wire-free, so lots of underwire-wearing ladies may like it as a break from, or alternative to, their everyday underwired bra. If this is the case for you, your bra need not be specifically a sports bra – mostly any wire-free bra will do. Click here to check out some comfortable wire-free bras from A to K cups.
Bra Doctor Recommends: For yoga, I love to wear my Bra Doctor Light Luxury bra! It’s wire-free, cotton and ultra-comfortable. (Click here to see the microfibre version of this style from the Sleek Simplicity collection by Bra Doctor.) My customers also enjoy the 8566 Extreme Comfort wire-free double moulded cotton bra by Grenier Lingerie, which has a back closure and cushioned straps which can transform into a criss-cross. The 5150 cotton sports bra by Elita Lingerie is also a popular choice, with its racerback look and double-moulded layering.
A medium impact bra is right for you if you prefer a range of activities, like biking, jogging, mixed with some lower intensity sports. Some medium intensity sports bras have underwire, but you don’t need an underwire for support. For sports bras, the specific seaming and layering of the innovative high performance fabrics confer support without the need of an underwire. Still, I think the best thing for all women doing medium or high intensity is to wear a high impact sports bra. Extra support is definitely better! This also applies to wearing a medium intensity bra for lower intensity activities.
Bra Doctor Recommends:
The 847 Tri-Action sports bra by Triumph is a classic bestseller with a natural shape, and comfortable velcro straps which you can wear traditionally or criss-crossed. The 5620 sports bra by Naturana has double-moulded cups for a seamless and natural look, which also makes it great to wear as an everyday wire-free bra too. The 320 Energie sport bra by Le Mystere is a cotton option with a lower neckline and a more defined shape, and the front & back padded adjustable straps can be worn standard or criss-cross for a personalized fit.
If you’re a runner, martial artist or you like to play tennis, basketball, and other physically strenuous activities, you NEED to be wearing a high impact sports bra. These bras can dramatically reduce bounce, letting you focus on your activities instead of your breasts, which is crucial when you’re trying to stay competitive. Typically, high intensity bras have fabric innovated to support you and wick away moisture for even the sweatiest events, while helping you breathe and move with ease and comfort. Think cushioned straps, cushioned back closures and pinch-free elastics for optimum performance.
Shock Absorber sports bras are the leading and most widely recognized brand in the UK and throughout Europe. Runners and athletes endorse them; Shock Absorber was also voted #1 Sports Bra by readers of Runner’s UK, and winner of Best Sports Bra as voted by readers of Women’s Fitness. It’s probably because Shock Absorber sports bras can reduce breast movement up to 74%* and come in sizes from A to HH cups, so even fuller busted ladies can experience true support when they want to get active.
Bra Doctor Recommends:
I personally own each of these bras and swear by them for my workouts. The first is the sports bra by Change of Scandinavia, wire-free and designed to keep your breasts in place no matter how much you’re jumping around. The wide straps are Velcro adjustable, so you can also wear it criss-cross, and there is a wide back closure. It’s also available from B to H cups! Next is the S826 Impact wire-free cotton sports bra by Royce Lingerie, with plush straps, a reinforced back closure, wide underband and high neckline for coverage and support up to a K cup. Last but certainly not least is the Ultimate Run sports bra by Shock Absorber, with infinity support that reduces up to 78% bounce. Plus it’s available from A to F cups.