The two most essential pieces of kit you need as a female runner are a pair of decent running shoes and a good-fitting, supportive running bra. “You need a sports bra that is high impact for your cup size and can withstand the figure-eight movement that your breasts make while running,” says Charlie, brand manager at boobydoo, the UK’s biggest sports bra retailer.
Finding this, though, can sometimes be a challenge, particularly with so many options to choose from. We asked the experts at Boobydoo to send over their recommendations for A-C cups, so that our team could carry out some focused testing and help you to narrow down your options. Here’s the three running bras that came out on top.
They say: Constructed from a double-layered smart material, this bra is designed to give maximum support for high-impact activity, while providing optimal moisture wicking. The stable straps and power-back is designed to give maximum hold and all-round chest support and the front zip makes the bra straight forward to get on and off.
Our testers say: The fabric certainly feels plush and durable and, with two layers, you really do get a feeling of firm support. We loved the wide, protective straps, too, which gave extra hold while negotiating steep down hills (you really do feel you’re locked firmly in place). However, while we would absolutely agree that the front zip made getting the bra on and off easy, a word of caution is necessary: make sure you close the safety fastens before zipping up! Running late for parkrun, our tester pulled the bra over her head, instead of zipping it up, only to discover in the first kilometre that the safety fastens weren’t in place and the zip came swiftly down! You needn’t make that mistake now, though!
They say: A compression bra, with the perfect level of support for those with an A-C cup. Support is provided by the Powerband technology which also stops the bra from riding up. It’s said to offer great temperature control thanks to the keyhole design of the racerback and also the moisture-wicking double-layer construction. The CoolMax and Supplex materials also give the bra a soft and silky feel.
Our testers say: This bra won Gold in our Women’s Running Awards last year so we had a feeling it would tick all the boxes. As promised, the bra offered the perfect amount of support; tested in a small, our B-cupped tester was content with the protection it offered her, both on the road and the treadmill, and was also extremely impressed with the fit. We also liked the crop-top design, meaning it could be layered as an undergarment or just on its own in the gym. And, after some sweaty intervals on the treadmill, we can confirm the CoolMax fabric did a good job at keeping us dry!
Anita DynamiX Star Sports Bra
They say: The award-winning DynamiX Star sports bra is designed to get rid of that perennial problem: wriggling in and out of your bra. With traditional hook-and-eye fastenings on the chestband and hook fastenings on the front of the shoulder straps, it also has an X-back for freedom of movement. The seamless cups are pre-shaped and the shoulder straps are designed to sit right in the middle of your shoulders for comfort.
Our testers say: This bra lived up to its ‘Easy On & Off’ billing – we found that even without undoing the shoulder straps it was pretty easy to pull on and off (even when soaked through from the rain!). The adjustability at the front also made it much easier to get the fit just right. Bounce control was brilliant during intervals and running down hills and steps, although it’s not as restrictive feeling as some maximum-impact bras. It’s really comfortable too: we loved the flat but padded shoulder straps and the soft, micro-towelling lining in the cups.