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During the month of June, here at the FITMumPlan we’re going to be looking at different exercise clothing and comparing what’s on the market.  To kick us off, we’re discussing sports bras.  Before mentioning how a sports bra should fit, lets think about the importance of wearing them.

According to Running Health and Lifestyle Advice, the average breast size in the UK is a 34D which is approximately 500g per breast, meaning the average women carries an extra 1kg of weight on their chest.  The breast has no muscle and isn’t connected to any muscles in the body, it moves independently to the rest of the body.  It’s support structures are the skin and ligaments, known as Cooper’s ligaments.  Therefore the need for a good sports bra is so important to protect the breast tissue, prevent breast pain and limit movement during exercise.

If the breast moves more than 60% during exercise, you are at risk of damaging the ligaments and the breast will change shape permanently.  Your performance can be altered without the proper support, straining the chest muscles and slowing you down.

When choosing a new sports bra, consider what exercise you’ll be dong; you may need different types depending on the activity.  For example, you wont need such a supportive bra for a Pilates session but you will need much more support for a cardio session When trying a new bra, ensure you replicate the movement you’ll be doing to check out it’s support.  Adjust the straps accordingly and test the arm range of movement you have.  Some bras are the traditional style of bra with a much fuller cup that do up at the back.  The racer type bras that you have to put over your head have a lot of elasticity therefore aren’t that supportive.  I find racer bras that have a zip at the front most supportive.  You can get them on without looking like Mr Tickle trying to navigate your way through and they have plenty of support.  What styles and makes do you prefer?

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