Sports bras may fit slightly snugger than your everyday bras, but your size is likely the same. Do not size down in your sports bra purchase. Calculate your bra size each time you purchase a new sports bra. Your bra size will change several times over your lifetime. Body changes such as weight loss or gain, pregnancy, hormones and aging will affect bra size.
Encapsulation sports bras: These bras use individual cups to surround and support each breast separately. There is no compression in these bras (most everyday bras are encapsulation bras) making them generally best for low-impact activities. Encapsulation bras provide a more natural shape than compression bras.
Compression sports bras: These bras typically pull over your head and compress the breasts against the chest wall to restrict movement. They do not have cups built into the design. For A-B size cups, compression sports bras without adjustable bands or adjustable straps can work for low- to medium-impact activities. For C-DD cups, compression sports bras should have adjustable bands and straps for proper fit and can provide medium to high support.
Compression/encapsulation sports bras: Many sports bras combine the above methods to provide support and natural shaping. These bras offer more support than compression or encapsulation alone, because each breast is supported individually in the cup and also compressed against the chest wall. For A-B cups, these bras may have adjustable bands or straps and are good for low to high impact. For C-DD cups, these bras should have adjustable bands and adjustable straps for proper fit and are excellent for high impact.
Adjustable straps offer the most customized fit and are often found on encapsulation or encapsulation/compression-style sports bras. Bras with adjustable straps may also last longer since you can tighten the straps as the bra ages and stretches over time.
Back closure: While most sports bras are pulled on over your head, some have a back closure with hooks. In addition to being easier to get on and off, this type of sports bra allows you to further adjust the fit. When fitting a new sports bra, use the loosest hook. That way, when the bra inevitably stretches out, you can still tighten it up and the bra will last longer.
Underwire: Underwire in a sports bra supports each breast individually and can help to minimize movement. The underwire should lay flat against your rib cage, below the breast tissue, and should not poke or pinch.
1. There are three kinds of sports bra so you need to pick one that suits you best Surprise, surprise! Yes ladies there are three kinds of sports bras in the activewear section of your fave store. Compression, encapsulated, and combination.
4. Look for a bra with proper bands and panels If you are intrigued by the multiple panels and bands that your sports bra has, then let us reveal their purpose to you today. The bottom band supports your breasts while the side and back panels ensure zero spillage. Plus they help you choose a good fit.
6. Invest in both low-impact and high-impact bras No one bra does it all. So, if it is yoga or Pilates day, then you can very well wear a low-impact sports bra. If you are going for weight training and other high-intensity workout sessions then you must wear a high-impact sports bra to save your boobs from all the movement.
Sports scientists from the University of Portsmouth studied how breast tissue is damaged when running, in regular bras and a variety of sports bras. They found low to medium impact sports bras reduce bounce but are not effective for restricting the side-to-side movement that occurs when running.
In fact, their research shows that women change the way they run depending on the type of bra worn. So not only will a good sports bra provide you with vital support, it could help you to set a new PB too.
To give your bra a longer lifespan wash in cold water, avoid fabric softener and bleach, and do not tumble dry as heat will accelerate the elastic degradation. Instead, dry it flat and if your sports bra starts to rub or chafe invest in a new one.
You can find three main styles of sports bras: those that primarily employ compression, those that primarily employ encapsulation, and those that use a combination of the two. We considered all those styles when looking for bras to test.
Anna Perling is a former staff writer covering kitchen gear at Wirecutter. During her time at Wirecutter, she reported on various topics including sports bras, board games, and light bulbs. Previously she wrote food and lifestyle pieces for Saveur and Kinfolk magazines. Anna is a mentor at Girls Write Now and a member of the Online News Association.
Basic and no-frills, this sports bra earns our top spot because it was rated the most comfortable sports bra by our testers and has medium impact support for a wide range of workouts. Its compressive fit holds you in to prevent bounce, while the racerback provides a good range of motion.
Featuring encapsulation cups, this ThirdLove sports bra is designed for high-impact, sweaty workouts like HIIT, CrossFit and running. The wide, adjustable straps can cross and uncross in the back for racerback support. There's a hook and eye closure in the back for easy on and off.
With medium compression and removable pads, this versatile Outdoor Voices bra is ideal for a range of low- to high-impact activities. Its thick elastic bottom band offers good lift and support with a mesh racerback for airflow and range of motion. As the bottom band offers a bit more coverage than a traditional sports bra, many testers loved pairing this pick with leggings, choosing from eight stylish shades.
Head into your favorite studio class like Pilates or yoga with confidence in this low-impact style from Athleta. With a longline design and high neck, it can be worn as a crop top or under a shirt, giving you the comfort and support of a sports bra with extra coverage and stability around the torso. It's made with buttery soft fabric and has a built-in bra with removable pads for additional support. Note that this style is for A to C cups, but the brand also offers a D to DD version that runs up to a size 3X.
This sports bra was a fan favorite from our panel of testers, especially for people with cup sizes D through H. They liked the flattering design and the encapsulation and gave it feedback like, "there was no pain from breasts moving up and down while running, which often happens, even with tight sports bras. I like that it has separate cups (instead of one massive uni-boob)." The downside was that some testers experienced fit issues, including spillage and feeling a bit tight, so you may need to size up.
Running requires a sports bra that'll minimize bounce without chafing, feeling comfortable mile after mile. This sports bra from Brooks is specifically designed for running with a high compression feel and removable cups for additional support. It has pockets on the side and back, but most testers didn't find it comfortable to work out with something in the pockets. GH analysts appreciate the bonded seams and edges to reduce any chafing irritation.
Sometimes when you grab leggings and a sports bra, you aren't actually planning on working out but instead need a casual outfit to lounge in or run errands. This pick from Alo Yoga is the ideal lounging sports bra. It's made with ultra soft, stretchy fabric that has a chic front ruching detail for a stylish touch. The longline silhouette hits right at your waist with a V-neckline, flattering for smaller chests.
Offering an impressive size range from XXS to 6XL, this sports bra from Girlfriend uses recycled plastic water bottles (RPET) and spandex to create the brand's signature comfy, compressive fabric. It has a racerback design that's designed for medium impact exercise.
Whether you are training for a half marathon or stretching on a yoga mat, find a bra that delivers a blend of superior flexibility and bounce control. The right sports bra will let you move comfortably by minimizing breast movement during exercise.
Sports bras come in a variety of silhouettes, including crossback, racerback and scoop-back designs, each of which are ideal for different types of physical activity. You can also get the latest trends, including strappy sports bras, keyhole details and high necklines. Shop sports bras from the biggest brands, including Champion®, Nike® sports bras, Moving Comfort® sports bras, CALIA and more cute sports bras that help support your performance.
Looking for additional options? Explore even more women's sports bras, jackets, and running leggings from top brands like Free People at Public Lands, a specialty outdoor store with a purpose-driven mission to help all people enjoy the free outdoors.
Personal comfort and fit are essential when choosing your sports bra. In addition to coverage and level of support, here are a some additional details to consider before making your sports bra purchase: 781b155fdc