Mar 8, 2019

Breast Health - Bras and Posture

As we approach International Women’s Day (March 8th) Moira D’Arcy, Chartered Physiotherapist and Principal of St Judes Clinic in Leighton Buzzard looks at the benefits of us ladies looking after our assets.

bra health

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 “I must, I must improve my bust” I don’t know about you but I can remember these words from a long time back and it went with various arm movements.  Also, I remember my mum saying how important it was to always get a good fitting bra right from the start.  Well, Mother knows best, as they say!

A good bra should be viewed as more than just a pretty piece of underwear. It’s got a job to do, whether it is just for day to day wear or for sport. We also change shape at different times in our lives, so a woman could wear up to 6 different bra sizes in her lifetime due to such factors as pregnancy, weight fluctuation and gravity!

Wearing the correct size bra and the right bra for sport will mean that you will look great, be well supported and ward off unnecessary discomfort. A bad bra fit can lead to poor posture leading to spinal pain, or badly fitting bra straps can pull or press on your trapezius muscles (running along the neck and back), leading to local aches or aches spreading across the shoulders and into the neck. Sports bras can help to minimise bounce and enhance support, stopping otherwise potential sore chafing and stretching of the breast skin and ligaments.

Cup size, straps and fastenings all play a part in giving you your ideal best fit. Also, if you wear an underwired bra, the centrepiece should sit flat against your chest and the wire should rest under your bust. There should be no gaps.  You can work out your own cup and band size:

·         Back size to the closest inch

·         Cup size to the closest inch

·         Subtract the back size from the cup size

·         0-1/2” = AA, ½ - 1 = A, 2” = B, 3” = C, 4” = D, 5” = DD/E, 6” = DDD/F etc

Many department stores offer a professional bra fitting service (as do local suppliers such as L-Collections in Berkhamsted).

Working the muscles in your chest, shoulder and neck will also help you maintain the support needed for your breasts but if you are suffering from aches and pains caused by poor posture, we at St Judes can always assess and treat you along with giving out appropriate sound advice to help you to a better posture and less pain.