The new collection aims to tackle the impact of poor support on sport participation and performance
Researchers from the University of Portsmouth have worked in partnership with adidas on their new sports bra collection to tackle significant impact of poor support on sport participation and performance.
With women’s needs being historically under-served when it comes to sportswear designed for the female form, today adidas unveils its extensive new sports bra collection after undergoing extensive research, development and multiple testing stages. With studies showing breasts can undergo damaging skin stretch without the right bra, and widespread dissatisfaction amongst every day and elite athletes that is hindering performance and participation in sport, the collection comprises of 43 new styles across 18 product franchises.
adidas worked closely with the Research Group in Breast Health at the University of Portsmouth, who found that if breasts are not properly supported during running, they experience the same G force as an F1 driver and could undergo potentially damaging skin stretch. Meanwhile, unsupported breasts can move up to 19cm during star jumps and nearly half (46 per cent) of schoolgirls who were surveyed reported their breasts affected their participation in sports.
Breast movement in sport continues to be an area that is overlooked, so it’s great to have established a long-standing relationship with adidas. Not only have they invested in sports bra research and development and independent scientific testing, but they recognise the importance of raising awareness of this topic.
With the impact of breast movement in sport not regularly brought to the fore, adidas partnered with Professor Joanna Wakefield-Scurr, head of the Research Group in Breast Health, to help shine a light on why sufficient breast support during exercise is crucial, and the damaging effects of not wearing the right sports bra.
The Research Group in Breast Health uses its expertise in breast biomechanics to improve scientific knowledge of breast health, inform the development of breast related products and raise awareness of this important aspect of women’s health.
Professor Joanna Wakefield-Scurr said: “Unknown to many, athletes may require the same amount of breast support during power walking as they do during sprinting, and a lack of support has the potential to cause irreversible damage. Breast movement in sport continues to be an area that is overlooked, so it’s great to have established a long-standing relationship with adidas. Not only have they invested in sports bra research and development and independent scientific testing, but they recognise the importance of raising awareness of this topic. This is great to see given the impact breasts can have on participation and performance in sport; and it’s vital that we continue to provide further education where we can.”
We worked with experts in breast health at the University of Portsmouth, to challenge ourselves and drive forward our innovation to better meet the needs of our female athletic community.
Using these insights, adidas set out to redefine its current offering and create a range of sports bras that deliver added comfort and better fit, enabling more female athletes to participate in sport and experience the benefits it brings. Using the latest material and design innovations, the new collection features Everyday bras designed for lounging and gentle movement, Studio bras for yoga, Pilates and other low-to-mid intensity activity, Train bras designed to provide enhanced support during HIIT classes and more intense sport or training, and Run bras that offer the highest level of breast support in the collection.
To further support the specific needs of its female athletic community, adidas worked with its roster of leading partners to understand what they’re looking for in a sports bra and the impact it has on their training and competition.
Speaking about the importance of the right fit, Olympic athlete Mikaela Shiffrin shared: “My sports bra is the first piece of kit I consider when I’m training because when it isn’t right, it throws me off and I lose focus. In the lead up to such a huge competition, it was so important for me to stay in the zone and not having the right bra has a significant impact on my training and performance, both mentally and physically. Sports bras are a foundational piece of kit but it’s not one size fits all – my training is varied and involves cardio, yoga and strength training, so having the right performance product that is tailored for each of these is key.”
Unknown to many, athletes may require the same amount of breast support during power walking as they do during sprinting, and a lack of support has the potential to cause irreversible damage.
Mikaela, who stars in the campaign, will be wearing the new collection on the global sporting stage this year. Featuring alongside her is yoga teacher and body positivity advocate, Jessamyn Stanley, sprinter and European Championships medallist, Lisa-Marie Kwayie, British model, Ellie Goldstein and Japanese actress and TV personality, Rola.
With fit being critical to the efficacy of a sports bra, adidas has launched an online bra fitting service to ensure more women can shop for their correct size, in addition to extending its best-in-class in-store fitting service. For those unable to make it in-store, an online bra fitting tool offers a self-measurement tutorial, and the bra finder helps more shoppers find their perfect fit.
The SS22 Bra Collection is available worldwide from 14 February on the adidas website, in stores and via the adidas app, with early access available from 9 February.