Breast pain during sports is a common occurrence, especially for D+ cup women. In a recent survey of our customers*, a staggering 55% said their breast size has prevented them from participating in sport at some point during their lives; with many resorting to wearing two bras in an effort to reduce bounce.
Creating a positive relationship with being active.
When you’re a teenage girl with a growing bust, sport is not usually an appealing idea. We’ll talk about the physical damaging aspects of this too but first there’s the emotional. We all know that being active is proven to improve health and well-being, but to shy away from high intensity sports due to embarrassment or discomfort can lead to a long-term, unhealthy relationship with exercise. According to the Women's Sport and Fitness Foundation, almost 9 out of every 10 girls aged 13-14 are failing to meet the recommended amount of exercise.
For many, the reason boils down to one easily-solvable problem - their bra.
It can be a challenge to find a supportive bra in D+ cup sizes, especially in mainstream boutiques and department stores. At Brava, we have a great range of tried and tested sports bra styles in D-K cup sizes that cater to all activity levels. We encourage our customers to use the in-store treadmills at Hampton and our Melbourne CBD store to truly test the support of different styles in their quest to find something that is just right. By testing every sports bra before we add it to our range, our staff can guarantee that we only offer the best possible sports bras for fuller-busted women of all ages.
You don't have to double-bra.
We don’t want you to miss out and form a negative relationship with your body because you feel there aren’t options to help you get involved in sport or exercise, so we're big fans of recommending that you do whatever is necessary to help you feel supported to get active. For some of our customers this means choosing to wear a crop top (such as the Purelime Seamless Crop) over their sports bra for additional compression, but if you are fitted into the right style and size of sports bra it shouldn't be necessary to wear more than one structured bra.
"I bought a sports bra, and can't believe that big boobs can be so well supported. This has had a huge impact on my life as I can now exercise without feeling self conscious." - Felicity
Breast pain & bounce.
Dr Jenny Burbage, from the breast health research group at Portsmouth University, carried out a study on 1,324 female horse riders assessing how their bra fit and any correlation to breast pain*. Breast pain was experienced by 40% of all participants which is significantly related to the fact that the majority of participants were D cup or above. The researchers found that upper body muscle pain and poor posture were experienced significantly more by riders with larger breasts compared to those with smaller breasts; but any fuller-busted women could have told you that.
This is a clear indication that having bigger busts can have a damaging effect on posture if not supported correctly. It doesn’t matter what sport or activity you’re partaking in; good support is a must and pain can be avoided. A good sports bra for a woman is as important as a male cricketer wearing a sturdy abdo guard (box) to protect themselves in the pelvic region. Not to be taken lightly.
Our fitter's favourites.
A great sports bra for high intensity workouts is our Shock Absorber Active D+. This bra reduces bounce in ten-folds with high-impact support and fuller coverage. The compression style helps as a minimiser and makes you feel like you’re strapped in. The best indicator of its support is usually testing it with a few jumps or a jog on our treadmills at the Hampton and Melbourne CBD stores. It’s a mind-boggling design without moulding or wires and one that can be easily side-stepped. But trust us, it’s one of the bestselling sports bras we have at Brava.
Another great option is the Panache Sports Bra which is reported to reduce bounce by up to 83%. This is a moulded and wired option, great for high intensity. Those above a HH cup may feel like they need even more support in this style and we recommend trying our Purelime Crop on top or going for the Elomi Energise Sports bra instead.
There are plenty more styles for those who need a sports bra in bigger bust sizes. Everyone is different and a perfectly fitted bra on one person may not be the best bra for the next person, even if they're the same size. There’s no ‘best’ sports bra as it all comes down to how it fits.
There’s a whole world of sports bras out there ready to support you. We know it’s harder to find a good fit when you’re bigger busted, so we recommend you have a professional fitting with us before purchasing.
* Brava's customer survey was participated in by 1,026 women in December 2017.
* For more information about Dr Jenny Burbage's research, please refer to this article.