Sports bras have come a long way in recent years and are not only supportive but also comfortable. The Cherry Blossom Intimates sports bra guide will tell you how to find your true size, how to choose the right sport bra for you and how to take care of your breasts when working out.

What are the features of a Sports Bra?

A sports bra will have wider side panels and possibly more hooks and eyes at the back for better support. The wider cushioned shoulder straps help distribute the weight when exercising, so nothing digs in. All sports bras are created with high performance fabrics that are moisture-wicking and breathable to keep you comfortable when doing sports activities. They are available with underwires or without. Both bra styles are extremely popular.

There are two main types of sports bras - Encapsulation and Compression.

Compression sports bras support the breasts by compressing the breast tissue together against the body, which gives an almost mono-boob look. This provides minimal movement and maximum support.

Encapsulation sports bras use a unique cup structure to encapsulate your breasts and keep them separate. You get maximum support with a more natural feminine shape.

Why wear a Sports Bra?

Breasts are made up of fibrous tissue. They do not contain any muscles but are supported by Coopers ligaments. These ligaments, once stretched, will not fall back into place. By wearing a good fitting sports bra, you are protecting your breasts by taking pressure off supporting muscles which can also enhance your breathing capacity. Think of a sports bra like a great pair of running shoes.

Research has shown that when exercising our breasts don't move up and down, they move more in a figure-8 pattern. Sports bras are able to adapt to this, they support and contain you in a unique way as well as keeping you cool and dry so you can get the most out of your exercise. Unlike many years ago, sports bras are now available in most bra sizes. 

If you wear your everyday bra whilst exercising, you can shorten its life dramatically. Sports bras are specifically designed to deal with the extreme movement and pressure of exercise. Everyday bras are not built for action, especially from the strain of running, yoga or playing tennis. If the delicate fabrics are exposed to heavy perspiration and friction, the materials elasticity can break down and will no longer give you the support you need.

Impact Levels

  • High Impact - High impact sports bras are designed with extremely firm fabrics for great support around the bust and back. They will have high necklines to reduce breast movement and are available in both underwired and soft cup styles. High impact activities include running, tennis and aerobics. A high impact sports bra is generally advised to all women with fuller figures regardless of their sports activities.
  • Medium Impact - Medium impact sports bras might use lighter fabrics but still still offer good support and high necklines for minimal movement. Medium impact activities include jogging and weight training. 
  • Low impact - Low impact sports bras are ideal for cup sizes ranging from A - DD. They are usually designed like a crop top bra with extra support for low impact exercises such as cycling, brisk walking and yoga.

Why is exercise important?

Our bodies crave movement and exercise. Exercising daily or every other day helps your physical fitness and good health including improving your heart health, muscle strength, overall mood and stamina. You don't have to spend hours at the gym or take up strenuous sports activities to be physically active, it could be brisk walking, a yoga class or swimming a lap in the pool. These all help our health and fitness levels besides just losing weight. 

The Sports Bra Test

When trying on a sports bra, its important to check the fit is correct before starting any sports activities. Most women will buy the same size sports bra as their previous bra. This is a good starting point, but we advise doing some tests to check the size and support of the sports bra is correct.

  1. Stand in front of a mirror with the sports bra on.
  2. Lift your arms and move them around making sure the sports bra stays in place.
  3. Try a gentle jog or jump on the spot and check your breasts are not moving or starting to bulge anywhere. Check the back of the bra is sitting straight and not riding up.
  4. A sports bra should fit the same way a normal bra does. The back should sit parallel to the front and the cups should cover the breasts without any creasing or cleavage on show. You may find you need to try a bigger cup size in a sports bra to make sure you get the height in the cup and the neckline. The back needs to be comfortable but firm. If the under-band is too big, it could cause friction when exercising. 

Frequently asked questions

  1. Welcoming Atmosphere: When you arrive at our store, you'll be greeted by our friendly and compassionate staff. We aim to create a warm and welcoming environment where you can feel at ease.
  2. Personal Consultation: Your fitting will begin with a one-on-one consultation with one of our certified mastectomy fitters. They will take the time to get to know you, your specific needs, and any concerns you may have.
  3. Privacy and Comfort: We understand the importance of privacy during this process. Our fitting rooms are designed to provide you with a comfortable and discreet space where you can try on bras and garments.
  4. Expert Measurement: Our certified fitters are highly trained in post-mastectomy fitting techniques. They will take precise measurements to determine your bra size accurately, ensuring the best fit and support.
  5. Selection of Bras: Based on your preferences and needs, our fitter will guide you through our collection of post-mastectomy bras. These bras are specifically designed with features such as pockets for breast forms or prostheses, soft fabrics, and comfortable straps to provide you with the utmost comfort and confidence.
  6. Personalized Recommendations: Our fitters will provide you with personalized recommendations based on your body shape, surgical procedure, and preferences. They will explain the features and benefits of different bras and help you choose the ones that are right for you.
  7. Try-On Session: You will have the opportunity to try on various bras to ensure they fit comfortably and provide the desired support. Our fitters will make any necessary adjustments and alterations to ensure the perfect fit.
  8. Education and Support: Throughout the fitting process, our staff will provide you with information and guidance on caring for your bras, prostheses, and overall breast health. We are here to answer any questions you may have and offer emotional support as well.
  9. Selection of Other Lingerie: In addition to bras, we offer a range of post-mastectomy lingerie, including camisoles, swimwear, and accessories to help you feel confident and stylish.
  10. Personalized Service: At Cherry Blossom Intimates, we understand that every individual's experience is unique. We are committed to providing you with a personalized and empathetic experience that caters to your specific needs and preferences.

We are dedicated to providing you with the highest quality products and services to support your post-mastectomy needs. Here's a breakdown of our pricing:

  1. Bras: Our standard post-mastectomy bras are priced at $60 each without insurance coverage. These bras are designed to offer comfort, support, and style, specifically tailored to your unique needs after a mastectomy. They come in a variety of styles and colors to suit your preferences.
  2. Prostheses: Prostheses are available in a range of options, each with its own features and benefits. The pricing for prostheses can vary depending on the type and materials used. Our prostheses typically range in price from $80 to $500. We offer a variety of prosthetic options to accommodate different budgets and individual requirements.

Kindly bring a copy of a government issued photo ID, your insurance cards, a referral from your doctor (can be your primary care, oncologist, or surgeon).

  • Aetna (HMO, PPO, Medicare)
  • Amerigroup (Maryland)
  • Breast & Cervical Cancer Program of Maryland
  • BCCP of Department of Health
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield (all-HMO, PPO, POS, Medicare)
  • Cigna
  • Johns Hopkins Healthcare EHP
  • Johns Hopkins US Family Health Plan
  • Kaiser of the Midatlantic
  • Medicare
  • Medicaid: Maryland, DC and Virginia
  • Maryland Physicians Care
  • Priority Partners MCO (a division of Johns Hopkins Healthcare)
  • Tricare-Humana/Tricare East (Military insurance)

Updated 10.1.23