It’s a bra thing…

Ski+board Deputy Editor Rosie Barcroft finds out that there’s nothing wrong with a bit of extra support when it comes to active sports.

70% of women are wearing the wrong bra size, and until this morning, I was one of them.

I was sitting in Profeet, Fulham listening to a presentation on women’s fitness, sports bras and trainers while trying to hide my rather, I’m ashamed to say, tattered and holey support.

Michele Woolf from Moving Comfort (women’s fitness apparel company) was talking to us (me, and a group of ladies) about our chests.

“Breasts are made from Coopers Ligaments and it is a fact of life they will eventually sag. However, by wearing a correctly fitted bra we can delay this process”, said Michele. “Traditional everyday bras are designed to support us, however, sports bras are designed to support and reduce movement by up to 76%.

“All cup sizes need support when exercising, even an A cup can move up to four centimetres.”

The last comment made me sit up in my chair. Four centimetres! I suddenly felt rather guilty for my lack of decent bra. But Michele wasn’t finished yet.

“How many people wash their bras in lukewarm water, or if machine washing use a lingerie bag?” she asked. I grimaced slightly feeling ashamed and sagged in my seat, as did many others with only a few raising their hands.

“When you put your bra in your draws, avoid folding the cups over each other – instead lay it flat so it doesn’t twist”, Michele continued. I sunk lower. “And check your bra size every time you purchase a new one.” I almost slumped to the floor. I thought back to the last time I had bought a bra (2009) and the last time I had one fitted (never).

When the presentation finished, I took a deep breath and strode over to Michele. I was on a mission.

Holding my arms up, Michele measured just under my breasts. She said: “Whenever you have this done, make sure the tape is tight with just enough room to fit two fingers underneath.”

Urban X-overHaving established I was a 33A, Michele gave me a few to try on. Being a novice, it took me a little while. The straps confused me at first (they crossed over at the back). Then I had a problem with the fastening hooks — namely that my arms weren’t flexible enough to fit them together. (I had to do up the bra before putting it on.)

‘Tight’ I thought. “Perfect”, said Michele. So a few seconds later, I found myself buying it.

Today I decided to put it to the test. Wearing it under my cycle gear, I pedalled off round Richmond Park. At work, I jogged through Wimbledon Common. And I then proceeded to do some press ups and core exercises (I got up very early to do this).

Not surprisingly, my new sports bra (an Urban X-Over) worked. I quickly got used to the close fit and actually felt rather confident wearing it – knowing it was doing some good.

And my weathered worn out bra of yesterday? I’m glad to say it’s now in the bin.

For more information:

Moving Comfort


Rosie Barcroft


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