Choosing the right support for all shapes, sizes and types of activities
Many of us don't realize the importance having a good support system until
it's too late: The sports bra.
With a lifetime in the fitness industry, numerous industry colleagues and
students in the past years have approached me with burns, marks and cuts from
straps, the type of material or mere design of the bras they work out in. The
common question I am approached with, "What kind of sports bra do you wear?"
The following is a checklist to aid in choosing an athletic support top that
will allow people to run, jump, cycle, lift, step, jab, kick and more without
the usual and sometimes embarrassing unnecessary comforts one gets from the
wrong sports top
Straps should be snug but not restrictive with sufficient padding. Larger
breasted women usually prefer racerbacks or T-backs because they offer more
support. Adjustable straps are a growing trend. They allow you to adapt the
support of the bra to suit different activities from lifting weights in a gym,
running outside or Turbo Jam™ at home.
Encapsulation bras have molded cups or built-in liners. Compression bras press
the breasts against the body. While A- and B-cup athletes can wear both kinds,
larger-breasted women typically prefer encapsulation styles.
Look for moisture-wicking fabrics. These are typically a blend of cotton and
synthetic fibers--cotton for softness and synthetic for dryness. Many athletic
designers and brands have developed lines of 'friction-free' bras with special
fabrics sewn into areas prone to chafing like around the nipples, over closures
and around straps systems such as "CoolMax" linings that whisk moisture away
from the skin.
Armholes should allow for a full range of movement in all directions without
pinching underneath. There should also be no "spillage" out of the armholes.
This refers to the front of the bra, how high it rises from the bust to the
neck. Generally, as a woman's bust size goes up, so should the gore. The key is
to have full support and to prevent portions of the breast from "spilling" over.
CLASPS AND CLOSURES
All seams, hooks, clasps and underwires should be covered with a soft,
moisture-wicking fabric. To avoid severe chaffing, endurance athletes should
look for bras that are seamless. These are mostly made with a circular knit,
eliminating most of the panel seams.
Now that you know what to look for... trying them on is the next step. It's time
to go shopping and you'll find most tops are not to heavy on the pocket book,
ranging around $40 dollars. Additionally,
the following links are helpful
About Chalene Johnson: Designer and owner of Powder Blue Boutique with
the latest trends in Fitwear www.turbowear.com Also, an internationally known
fitness personality and Owner of Powder Blue Productions: The creators of
PiYo™ a fitness minded company. Chalene and her fashions have been
featured in numerous fitness publications, newspapers and videos. For more
information about Chalene, visit www.turbokick.com or contact 800-315-2505
About the Author
Ellie is a staff writer for Chalene Johnson creator of Powder Blue Productions where the latest trends in Fitness wear are found (www.turbowear.com). Also the creator of Turbo Kick™ and PiYo™, Chalene developed Powder Blue to be a fitness-minded company. For more information about Turbo Kick™, PiYo™ or Turbo Wear, go to www.turbokick.com or contact 800-315-2505.