The Rio 2016 Olympics are in full swing, so you can't blame most parents for ignoring any back to school supply shopping.
The drama of the games is addictive because it's exciting to watch athletes from all over the world competing with one another. These strong, determined, and talented men and women are breaking records in multiple physical disciplines, and their achievements are inspiring.
But I can remember a time when girls weren't encouraged to compete athletically. It wasn't until 1972 that Title IX put an end to sex discrimination in educational sports. I was in high school and saw the impact it made. Shortly after, the first modern sports bra hit the market.
Sports bras are a necessity for those of us with breasts, whatever our size. Let's face it, boobs get in the way when we run, jump, and throw. (Heck, they sometimes get in my way when I roll over in bed.) Studies show that when you properly restrain breast tissue, it improves performance. It's the same concept as wearing the right trainers to work out. Why wouldn't you take advantage of the added benefits?
Still, not everyone understands the importance of wearing sports bras when exercising. A recent survey of UK students found that many adolescent girls avoid participating in sports because of their breasts. Maybe the right sports bra could give these young women the extra confidence and security they need, especially given that many are still developing.
What should parents or caregivers look for when shopping for sports bras? The right fit is important, but remember that your daughter may wear more than one size depending on the brand or style. Focus on those featuring encapsulation and compression design, made of moisture wicking fabrics, and with adjustable straps and bands (so you'll get a better fit). Don't be surprised at the price of some models. Look for the same quality construction you expect in comparably priced athletic shoes. Because you'll need to wash them more often than a regular bra, you should buy at least two for an active student.
The good news is that there are plenty of choices when it comes to fashionable and functional boob gear. Here are ten highly rated sports bras suitable for any back to school supply lists:Nike "Pro Classic" Dri-FIT Padded Sports Bra Available in XS-XL via Nordstrom Shock Absorber Max Sports Bra Available in Bands 28-40, Cups A-HH via HerRoom Panache Full-Busted Sports Bra Available in Bands 28-40, Cups D-J via HerRoom Natori Yogi Convertible Sports Bra Available in Bands 32-38, Cups A-G via Nordstrom Chantelle High Impact Sports Bra Available in Bands 30-42, Cups C-H via HerRoom Berlei Electrify High Impact Mesh Sports Bra Available in Bands 30-40, Cups A-E via HerRoom Wacoal Zip Front Underwire Sports Bra Available in Bands 32-40, Cups C-G via Nordstrom
What about you? Do you or your daughter wear sports bras? Which brands are on your back to school supply list?
Featured image: Brandi Chastain via Getty Images