LET’S HEAR IT FOR THE GIRLS
Sports bras are (finally) getting a high-tech upgrade.
Pilates, yoga, barre — the popularity of each is skyrocketing (in 2015, yoga alone was a $1 billion industry in Australia). Yet despite each workout’s nuances, they all have one thing in common: no shoes required. But we’d bet good money you put a lot of thought into your trainers (that you park outside the studio door) and significantly less on the sports bra you wear every class. Despite being an essential piece to many women’s kits (a 2013 study found that the average bra size has increased three cup sizes in the past 20 years), the lowly sports bra is often an afterthought — until now. Our favourite athletic brands are finally giving them the time and attention they deserve.
“Through our research, we’ve learnt that most women feel they have to compromise on either comfort, performance or aesthetics when selecting a bra,” says Alexandra Plante, Lululemon Whitespace Innovation product manager, who recently oversaw the release of the Enlite Bra after two years of development. Made from lightweight fabric and available in 20 (!) sizes, the bra takes into account how each breast moves independently of the other. “We challenged the belief that targeting the reduction of breast movement is what provides women the most comfort and high performance,” says Plante. “Instead, the bra manages movement, and the encapsulated construction houses each breast separately without compressing the breast tissue.”
Over at Nike, the Motion Adapt Bra features a clever material made from a foampolymer hybrid that locks out when it senses impact (similar to a seatbelt), providing varying levels of support depending on what you need that instant. And local brand Berlei believes a sports bra should be comfortable enough to wear all day. Its new Womankind Sports Bra (designed with a wide strap and bottom band for added comfort) offers up to 40 per cent less bounce, as tested and approved by the Australian Institute of Sport, but doesn’t squash or feel restrictive. “It has a flexible underwire and a spacer cup that shapes to your natural silhouette,” says Adele Kershaw, Berlei’s head of innovation. “It’s a great everyday bra to wear from work straight to the gym.”
“MOST WOMEN FEEL THEY HAVE TO COMPROMISE ON COMFORT, PERFORMANCE OR AESTHETICS WITH SPORTS BRAS”
Enlite Bra, $99, LULULEMON, lululemon.com.au Sports bra, $109, shorts,$129, both THE UPSIDE, theupsidesport.com; earrings,$95, DINOSAUR DESIGNS, dinosaurdesigns.com.au Motion Adapt Bra, $75, NIKE, nike.com Womankind Sports Bra, $69.95, BERLEI, berlei.com.au