30 Mar Why Are Sports Bras So Important?
Let’s have a frank talk about sports bras. We’ve done the research for you.
We’ve attended in-person and online workshops to learn from doctors to increase our knowledge about the biomechanics of breast movement during activity and how it can adversely affect athletic performance. Here’s the facts as we know them:
1 in 3 women experience breast pain while exercising, and 8 out of 10 women wear the wrong size bra, including sports bras.
The #1 reported reason by girls ages 11 – 18 for discontinuing gym class in secondary school and giving up active extra-curricular activities is no sports bra or an improperly fitted sports bra.
Breasts are primarily glandular and adipose tissue (fat). They have no muscle in them. Anatomically, the breast has very little built in support. They’re supported by two weak structures: skin and Cooper’s Ligaments. During activity the breast moves in three ways: up and down, out and in, and side to side. During higher impact activities (anything with jogging, running, or jumping such as tennis, pickleball, baseball, soccer, basketball, rugby, horseback riding, ball hockey, ice hockey, rollerblading, HIIT workouts, Zumba, etc) uncontained breasts can oscillate up to 8 inches/20 centimeters! Our skin and Coopers Ligaments can’t withstand all this force by themselves, which is why a good sports bra is _so_ important. Studies show it doesn’t matter how low or high you jump, or how fast or slow you run…the breast movement is virtually identical, especially in larger cup sizes. The research proves proper support is a must!
There are 3 different types of sports bras: compression only, which are not recommended, encapsulation only, which are only suitable for very low impact activities like yoga, and hybrid sports bras, which offer support from both compression AND encapsulation. After carefully measuring breast movement reduction and assessing wear-test comfort levels as reported by testers with a variety of breast cup sizes from very small to very full, the research shows the best choices for every intensity of activity are hybrid sports bras.
Not only are improperly supported breasts painful, they can also cause you to alter your biomechanics while exercising. Girls and women will subconsciously alter their arm swing in order to prevent breast movement. This can cause pain in other areas such as the shoulders, neck, and upper back.
At Bliss Beneath we now stock *8 different styles of hybrid sports bras* from 30 to 46 back sizes, B – J cups, with and without underwire. Nowhere else in central Ontario will you find this selection! When you come in for your 5-star rated Fitting Experience, our fabulous Boob Team will fit and educate you about all the features our sports bras offer, such as moisture wicking fabric, perforated fabric for breathability, under-cup cut outs for under bust breathability, padded shoulder straps, padded hook and eye closures, straps that can criss cross or be J-hooked, underwire height and placement, etc. We don’t stock front closure sports bras because once they stretch out, you can’t make them any snugger to maintain proper fit. A front closing sports bra will last 8-12 months, whereas a back closing sports bra will last up to three years (size staying the same and with proper care, of course).
Speaking of proper care, your sports bra needs to be hand washed every time you wear it. No machine! Trust us, it’s _so_ easy. Come into the store, and we’ll show you just how easy it is to hand wash ALL your bras. If it wasn’t easy, Tamara, the owner, wouldn’t do it!
Would you expect your husband or son to go out to his active extracurricular activities without his protective cup? Of course not. Yours and your daughter’s breast, back, neck, and shoulder health and comfort deserve the same consideration.
Remember, you don’t buy shoes sized XS, S, M, L, XL, etc. Your sports bra shouldn’t be sized like that either.”