Pick the Right Sports Bra- Shopping Tips
Wearing the right sports bra is as important as putting on the right sports shoes.
A sports bra must prevent your breasts from bouncing, sagging and stretching. You do NOT want all your hard work getting your body healthier, fitter and awesome, to lead to breast stress, stretch marks and sagging!
The firmness of the bra depends on the type of exercise. High-intensity cardio activities demand more breast support than weight lifting moves. Chafing is another issue which is prevented by choosing a sports bra of the right fabric and make. Typically, the better the quality—and yes, expense—the greater likelihood of a good fit without chafing. But hey… your “girls” are worth protecting!
So what exactly should we look for in a sports bra?
Everyday Health Magazine gives some very helpful suggestions for choosing the right sports bra.
Choosing Your Best Sports Bra
When you’re shopping for a sports bra, look for styles that meet these criteria:
1. Separation between cups
If you have large breasts – generally, cup size C or larger – look for a sports bra that has two separate cups with a divider between them. Underwire construction will offer more support, as will a wide band around the chest.
Best Fit Life TIP: We like these more than compression because they look better under regular clothing, so we can always be ready to be active without having to change into a uni-boob kind of compression bra.
2. Sturdy compression bras
For smaller-breasted women, a compression sports bra made of a sturdy, breathable fabric will work well. These bras don’t have hooks in the back; they just slide over your head.
3. Wide shoulder straps
Straps should be wide and feel comfortable on your shoulders, and not made of stretchy or elastic material.
4. Out-of-the-way seams
You don’t want the seams of your sports bra rubbing or chafing sensitive areas as you exercise, so make sure seams are in places that won’t bother you during your workout.
5. Sideways stretch
Your sports bra should allow for some stretching to fit your breasts comfortably, but shouldn’t stretch up and down or allow your breasts to bounce.
The Right Fit in a Sports Bra
Once you know it’s a well-made, supportive sports bra, you need to make sure it fits you properly for maximum support and comfort. Here’s what to check for:
1. Complete breast coverage.
Make sure that no part of either breast is spilling out of the cup or the bra — look for the next size up if they’re being squeezed out.
2. Comfort when you breathe.
With the sports bra on, breathe in deeply and evaluate how you feel. Is the bra too tight when you take a deep breath? If it is, look for a larger size.
3. Comfort when you move.
If the bra feels like it’s digging or cutting into your skin, try a larger size. It’s a fine line, but you’ll need to discern appropriately snug versus too tight. If it’s not comfortable now, it will only start to dig in more the longer you wear it.
4. The back doesn’t ride up.
If the sports bra sits higher on your back than around the front of your chest, it’s probably too big. A bra that fits correctly will fit snugly and evenly all around your chest.
5. Fit of the cups.
If you’re wearing a sports bra with two separate cups, the divider between them should be touching your chest. If it doesn’t, you need a bigger size.
6. Support as you move.
When you try it on, jump up and down in the dressing room. Make sure that your breasts are supported and are not bouncing too much in the bra. High knees in place will definitely put the bounce rate to the test. Don’t worry about what other people will think if they hear you pounding the floor in the room next door. These are your babies you’re protecting, and you see them everyday. You’ll probably never see your dressing room neighbors again, and maybe hearing you will help them to know how they might test theirs too!
Be confident. Be strong. Be you.
Our current favorites are Lululemon, but also Lucy and Athleta. You can find good sports bras on Amazon. We like these divided cup bras by Champion.
Best Fit Life TIP: To save time in returns from online orders, your best best is to go to your local sports store. We like Dick’s or Gander Mountain. Try on the styles you like by a few different brands to find the one that works best for you. Thereafter, you’ll be able to order that style online with less likelihood of needing to return it.
Bottom line make sure the bra fits comfortably, supports you as it should and that you can move easily without feeling restricted. Ideally, you want a sports bra that you is firm enough to hold up under bounces yet comfortable enough that you could wear it all day.
Go for function first, then fashion. These days there are so many awesome sports apparel companies that it’s easier to find cool sports bras that perform well while also looking good. So take the time up front to find the brand and fit that work for you, then stick with it. You—and your girls—will be glad.
Choosing the Right Sports Bra, Everyday Health Magazine