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Questions about where to find the best plus size hiking sports bras have been pouring into my inbox lately.
So I did a little research, looking at companies that claim to make the best plus size hiking sports bras.
Believe it or not, there are a few companies that pay attention to both sets of concerns a hiking woman has:
I also scouted around for customer reviews, ratings and rants to be sure these sports bras were the best on the market.
The first thing I noticed was the companies that tried to be cute, in striking contrast to those that were serious about sports bras for hikers.
Women hikers of all body shapes and sizes want performance features and a great fit, not cutesy or condescending labels.
Some of the bras marketed as sports bras didn't seem supportive enough to hold up a grape, let alone something as important (and sensitive) as breast tissue.
And here's another thing any female hiker is looking for in a hiking sports bra: a design that works with the reality of wearing at least one shirt, possibly a jacket, and a backpack.
Some of the so called sports bras looked really uncomfortable or incompatible with a hiking clothing layering system.
And customer reviews backed that up, with comments like "it binds under the arms" or "didn't give any support".
So what can you wear on the hiking trail that won't fight you every step of the way?
You've got more important things on your mind, like paying attention to the fantastic bounty of wild flowers, right?
Regardless of the size, a great hiking sports bra pays attention to how a woman's body moves on the hiking trail.
Womens hiking active wear should also look good!
The materials you look for in plus size hiking sports bras have big jobs to do:
When sizing up the design of potential plus size hiking sports bras, look for:
As with any bra, you should know the measurements of your rib cage just beneath your breasts (band size), your bust size, and your cup size.
But even if you think you know these measurements, different companies might interpret them a bit differently.
Be prepared to try on several styles and sizes.
For hiking sports bra fitting tips, read this.
And even more information is available here.
Ready to give up wearing 2 sports bras at a time?
This is the plus size sports bra that kept coming up, again and again:
1. Lots of support due to the design that looks like a cross between a corset and a vest.
2. Wide comfy straps and a modest neck line to fit well under hiking skirts and jackets without clinging or showing seams.
3. Moisture wicking fabric in a variety of colors.
4. Customer service is excellent for this company!
In my research, even Oprah had something good to say about this bra!!
A few of the negatives:
Don't want or need a high impact sports bra for hiking?
Here's another non-wired choice that ranges from 34C to 50G:
A few other differences from the Enell maximum support sports bra:
And then there's the Panache bra.
It has a racerback option, if that's important to you.
It also has all of the features of the other two bras above, but here's the thing:
If you're absolutely looking for an underwire sports bra, take a look at the Panache underwired sports bra.
This front zipper bra is built for hikers tackling an up-and-down trail or off trail travel, because it incorporates the best features of a sports bra:
I wish I could tell you that it's going to be easy to find the perfect plus size hiking sports bra.
But I know better, as a curvy woman who has watched the sports bra industry evolve over time to something that is close to getting it right!
Back at the dawn of time (1970s), there was no such thing as a sports bra.
So I'm not exaggerating when I say I was there at the dawn of the sports bra era :)
Hard to believe, yet 100% true!
But today, you can rejoice at the many design choices at various price points and levels of support.
So go for it! Find that perfect hiking sports bra!
Let me know if you have questions: use the CONTACT link at the top left of this page.
Patience, persistence, and dedication to comfort and performance on the trail are my wishes for you as you search for the best high performance, maximum support plus size hiking sports bras.
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