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how to buy a sports bra that fits

When it comes to things that can make your workouts easier and overall more enjoyable, there are a few obvious essentials: a comfy pair of sneakers, a water bottle, an energy-boosting playlist, and of course, a supportive sports bra. Some women even underestimate the power of a well-made, supportive sports bra. It not only has an impact on your appearance and comfort but even your health.

Wondering how a supportive sports bra can make a difference in your sweat sessions? Here are a few ways a supportive sports bra can make your workouts better:

It can be more flattering.

The fact is, support translates to lift — as in, when you’re wearing a supportive sports bra, your bust will simply look better. This is especially true if you’re doing any cardio or high-impact exercise. And who doesn’t want to look good while they’re breaking a sweat? It may not be your top priority (hopefully getting a good workout is), but it’s still a nice perk.

It can help you feel less self-conscious.

We’ve all been there. You’re in the middle of running, jumping, dancing, or some other form of cardio, and you’re totally distracted by how much your boobs are bouncing around. Not only does it distract you, but it may make you feel a little self-conscious. Maybe you’re looking around the room in that aerobics class to see if anyone else notices. Or maybe you’re feeling anxious about whether fellow joggers on your path can tell. Either way, you shouldn’t have to feel awkward or embarrassed while you’re exercising — in fact, you should be feeling the opposite: totally confident and powerful. Fortunately, a supportive sports bra can allow you to feel just that.

It can ease some of the strain on your Cooper’s ligaments.

Ever heard of the Cooper’s ligaments? These bands of connective tissue are what help the breasts to maintain their shape and structure. In other words, they keep your boobs in position and looking perky. As we age, those ligaments very gradually stretch out. There are other factors that can have a negative impact on these ligaments, such as weight fluctuation, multiple pregnancies, and smoking. And wearing a supportive sports bra is one of the best things you can do to protect them.

When your boobs aren’t well supported during an impactful workout, that can take a toll on the Cooper’s ligaments, eventually causing them to stretch out. And when they stretch, the breast tissue begins to sag. So, if you want to maintain a perky looking bust for as long as possible, be sure to wear a supportive sports bra — particularly during medium to high impact workouts (as these can pose the most strain on the Cooper’s ligaments).


Related: 7 Signs You’re Wearing The Wrong Sports Bra


how to properly fit a sports bra

It can reduce or eliminate breast pain and discomfort while working out.

If you’ve ever felt some breast pain after a run, you’re not alone. The culprit? A sports bra with insufficient support. When your breasts don’t have enough support during a vigorous workout, that can put a serious strain on them. According to the National Health Service, breasts can move up to about 15 centimeters while running. And that multidirectional movement can cause pain after exercising.

Your workout may leave you feeling a little tired or your muscles a little sore, but it definitely shouldn’t be causing you breast pain. Fortunately, a supportive sports bra can prevent any kind of discomfort, so you can enjoy your sweat session from start to finish.

It can give you the support you need to work out harder.

When you’re not stressing over how much your boobs are bouncing, or tugging away at it due to discomfort, you can focus on what matters: your workout. A supportive sports bra allows you to put all of your thought and energy into your exercising, and you may be surprised by how much more you get out of it as a result. A sports bra that’s not supportive enough may actually lead you to cut a workout short due to discomfort of self-consciousness. It may also compromise your form when doing certain moves. When an inadequate sports bra is not holding you back, however, you may find yourself being able to run an extra half mile or doing one extra set of burpees. Remember: Your bra should never hinder you from fully investing in whatever your chosen form of exercise is.

Pro tips

Obviously, a supportive sports bra can benefit your workouts in a multitude of ways. But don’t forget that in order to get maximum support from your sports bra, it needs to fit properly as well. A sports bra will typically need to fit slightly more snug in the band — though it shouldn’t be uncomfortable or restrict your movement or breathing in any way. You’ll be able to get the best fit (and thus, the most support) from a sports bra that comes in traditional band/cup sizes (rather than XS-4XL). Note that the most supportive sports bras will combine both encapsulation and compression technology, and underwire can also provide a little extra help in this regard. If you haven’t been fitted by a professional in the last six months, it may be time to get re-measured. That way, you can ensure that any sports bras you buy fit you flawlessly, and provide the support you need to protect your breasts, no matter what physical activity you’re participating in.


Related: How To Find A Supportive Sports Bra


how is a sports bra supposed to fit

We Highly Recommend

Whether you’re shopping for new everyday bras or lingerie for a special occasion, it’s always a good idea to seek out a second opinion. We know how hard it is to find bras that fit well and feel good, especially when you’re doing it on your own. If you’ve ever felt unsure about your bra size or you just don’t know where to go to find good bras, it’s time to let a bra fitter help.

Many specialty lingerie boutiques offer bra fittings. Their expert bra fitters will take the pain and frustration out of bra shopping and do all the work for you. Even better, their product knowledge can save you time and money. Plus, they know where all of the best bras are hiding.

If you’ve struggled with finding bras in the right size, it’s time to make a change. Visit our specialty store locator to find a store near you and schedule an appointment.

Happy bra shopping!


Featured image lingerie:
Parfait Active Wireless Sports Bra in Rabbit/White

Published by

Rebecca Strong

Rebecca is a Boston-based freelance writer who focuses on style, fitness, food, and travel. She has contributed to such publications as HuffPost, Elite Daily and U.S. News & World Report. When she's not writing, she can be found at home or in the studio working on the songs for her upcoming album. Her favorite bra is a black demi-cup style with all-over-lace — timeless and feminine.

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