Categorized | Anti-Aging

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Differences Between Compression and Encapsulated Sports Bra

Wearing the right sports bra can minimize injury during sport and breast-sagging. Depending on what kind of sport one is doing, the style of the sports bra suggested to wear differs from compression, encapsulated or combination of both.


Compression sports bra compresses the breasts against the chest. This one-piece style allows minimal or no-bounce breast movement. Normally they come in the form of pullover style without fasteners.

Encapsulated sports bra is designed to surround and support each breast individually with encapsulated cups. With no compression, this type of bra endures less bounce during exercise and gives more feminine shape to the wearer as well.

The compression/encapsulated combination style combines the compression and the encapsulation methods. It encapsulates each breast and compresses them against the chest. Thus it offers great support as well as comfort and shaping.

Who to wear which

A and B cups were said that they were best to wear compression bras. Coming in 2 basic styles – scoop-back style and racer-back style – they compress the breasts against the chest wall to restrict movement.

C cups and larger are always recommended to choose the encapsulated or combination sports bras. Because the compression bras are mostly in pullover style, they will not be easy for larger-breasted women to wear since they could possibly trap them in an odd pose when pulling the bras overhead. With encapsulation, the breasts are more supported and the bras are also more comfortable to wear.

Levels of sports impact

There are different levels of impact when one is engaged in sport activity. Walking and yoga are considered as low-impact activities. For this type of sports, the breasts bounce in one certain direction and it will be minimal. Therefore a compression sports bra is fine to wear, though encapsulation one is a good choice, too.

When you hike or do inline-skate, this will generate a medium impact to your body. And sports like running, kickboxing and soccer produces high impact. For these medium and high impacts types of sport, encapsulated bra is a better choice. With encapsulation, women have more chance getting no-bounce support because the breasts are managed separately.


A 2007 study  found that breasts move in three planes of motion during exercise. It then concluded that encapsulation bra give more effective results than compression one at reducing the total breast motion during sports. This is because the encapsulation bra reduces motion in two of the three planes, while compression bra reduces motion in only one plane. This disproved the previous belief that compression sports bra was better than the encapsulation one for small-breasted women.

In conclusion, whether you are small or large-breasted, encapsulation sports bra is a better choice. It holds your breasts in their right position. Also make sure that the sports bra you choose allows your skin to breathe freely. So always check that the material is highly absorbent and the padding has perforation inside. With nicely breathing skin and comfortable, hardly-bouncing sports bra, exercising can’t be more enjoyable.

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