The D-I-Y Bra Fitting Guide
It’s always best to get your sports bra fitted by a professional, but if it’s impossible to get into your local Up & Running then use our guide below to choosing the right bra.
Getting the band size right. The band should be as snug as possible. If it’s too big then it will ride up and can cause chafing.
To get a good starting point for your band size, measure around the rib cage just under the breast. The tape measure should be snug, and if it’s between cms, round down. For bras that are sized S, M, L etc, the size shown on UK bras is then converted as follows:
Once you’ve got the bra on, you should test the size by placing your fingers under the band at the back, pull your fingers away from your back – you should not be able to create a gap bigger than 3cms.
Getting the cup size right. The bra should be able to hold all of your breast tissue. There should be nothing creeping out of the sides, although a little skin is fine. If there is any breast tissue over-hanging the cup, then either the cup size is too small, or the straps need adjusting. The bra fabric should be smooth. Any wrinkling of the fabric means the cup size is too big.
Getting the straps right. Straps should not slide or dig in. If all the support is coming from the straps you may need a smaller band size. If you lift your bra strap there should be no more than 3cms gap.
Underwiring: If you’ve chosen an underwired bra such as the Panache Underwired, the underwire should sit on the rib cage below the breast tissue with the centre panel sitting comfortably flat against the breastbone. If the underwiring is not flat to the breastbone, then you need to go up a cup size.
There’s no doubt that sports bras, like running shoes are an investment, so you need to take care of them properly to prolong their life.
Because of the fabrics used, you can get away with washing the bra after every 1-3 wears to remove the build-up of sweat, dirt and bacteria.
To prolong life, remember to bear these tips in mind:
- Don’t expose it to high temperatures in the washer or tumble dryer
- Don’t use fabric softener
- Fasten the hooks if you have to put it in the washing machine, but ideally handwash and line dry
- Store it flat if your bra has moulded cups
- Replace it within 12 months, or sooner if you are a regular runner.
- It’s a good idea to have a couple of sports bras on the go, so that you can rotate them. One on the body, one in the wash.