What’s the best bra to wear to the gym? Today we’re going to tackle that loaded question. If you’re heading for the gym to support your New Year’s Resolution, you need a good sports bra to keep you comfortable and relaxed while you’re working out. The last thing you want is to be using an elliptical and cringing every time the underwire digs into your armpit (yes, I’m speaking from personal experience!) so make sure you’re wearing the right bra to the gym.
The Best Bra for the Gym is the One You Wear
Here’s the thing about sports bras: they do you no good if you leave them sitting in your dresser. It’s not uncommon for a woman to buy a sports bra, and then never wear it because it’s uncomfortable or it doesn’t provide enough support. So think about the things that drive you crazy about sports bras you’ve owned in the past, and shop for a sport bra that will address those issues.
Hate sport bras that don’t stop bounce? Then you want a supportive high-impact sports bra – something like the Shock Absorber Level 4-D Plus Max Sports Bra. But what if you want a sport bra that’s more comfortable and offers full range of motion? Then something like the Leading Lady Cotton and Spandex Seamless Soft Cup Bra is the best bra for you to wear to the gym.
Bottom line: find a bra that you’ll wear when working out. You don’t want a sports bra that will make you hate going to the gym and derail your fitness goals!
Size and Fit Matters When Selecting a Bra for Your Gym Workouts
It may sound like a no-brainer, but size and fit does matter when you’re picking a sports bra to wear to the gym. I’ve had some bra brands I’ve loved where the fit just isn’t quite right for me in a sports bra, and I’ve had some brands that don’t fit me properly EXCEPT in the sports bra. Make sure you’re shopping for the right size – check out our Guide to Fitting the Right Bra for You – and don’t be afraid to try a bunch of sports bras until you find a fit that works for you. Trust me – 30 minutes on the elliptical with a poorly-fitting underwire was enough for a rash that made it uncomfortable to exercise for the rest of the week! Don’t make the same mistake!
Shop for a Bra Based on Activity
As much as manufacturers and retailers would like to have you think so, there is no single sports bra that’s perfect for every activity – especially if you’re a full-busted woman. Women with big breasts need a lot of bounce control when running or doing aerobic exercises, for example, while those same bras may feel uncomfortable and constraining when doing yoga or weight work. It’s important to tailor your sports bra wardrobe to the various activities you’ll be doing at the gym, and make sure you’ve got the right pieces to cover everything.
Obviously you won’t change bras in the middle of your workout at the gym, but you can pick a bra that’s most appropriate based on your day’s activities. For example, if you run on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and do yoga and weight work on Tuesday and Thursday, it might make sense to wear a heavy-duty high-impact sports bra to the gym on M-W-F and a more comfortable low-impact sport bra on Tu-Th.
Or if you like to cram everything into a single workout and then take the in-between days off entirely, you could go with an all-around bra, like the Goddess Sports Bra. Keep in mind, though, when you go with an all-around bra, that it means compromising – it won’t have the bounce prevention of a heavy-duty high-impact sports bra, but it will be more comfortable and less constraining for things like yoga and pilates.
For a quick lineup of our top sports bras by activity, take a look at our blog post from Monday: Check Out Our Sports Bra Lineup to Help You Get Fit This Year!
Only you can decide what sports bra is best for the gym, but it helps to do your shopping armed with the right information to find the best bra for you.