In a word… yes!
Amazingly, more than 80% of women wear the wrong sized bra, and wearing the wrong bra size can affect your posture! Breasts that aren’t well supported (especially if you are well-endowed…) can have a significant impact on your shoulders, neck, upper spine and even your lower back. Common posture issues with wearing the wrong sized bra are hunched shoulders and a curved spine.
Bras should fit snugly around the rib cage. If your bra rides up, this is a clear-cut sign that the band size is too large. If you get dreaded ‘double boobs’, this indicates that the cup size is too small.
The band should be doing most of the work, providing approximately 80% of the support. The other 20% comes from the straps. If this balance is the wrong way around, your shoulder will be taking a lot of unnecessary pressure, causing neck and shoulder pain, and even painful headaches.
Tell-tale signs your bra isn’t correctly fitted:
1. The band is riding up
The band of your bra should be level at the front and back. Check that the underwire is fitting on the body, too. A great way to judge the fit is checking that the band is fitting firmly against the body, and not sliding around or moving away from the chest as you go about your daily grind. As a guide, you should be able to fit just two fingers under the band of your bra.
2. The shoulder straps are digging in
If your bra straps are digging in it could be because your band is too loose, and you are over-adjusting the straps to feel better supported. When you do this, the straps pull the bra up at the back, causing the issues we’ve already covered. You have two options here: you can try a bra with a smaller band size, or you could try loosening the straps. Again, you should be able to fit just two fingers between the straps and your shoulder.
3. The centre part of the bra isn’t flush with your body
The centre front of your bra should lie flat against your body. If it doesn’t, this could be a sign that the cup size is too small, causing the breasts to bring the centre front away from your body.
4. The double boob
If your cup size is too small, your breasts will naturally push up and out, spilling over the top. The result is four boobs when really you’re looking for two! When trying bras, make sure that each entire breast sits comfortably inside the cup, not forgetting to check the sides, too.
So, if you’re experiencing these issues, what can you do?
The first thing you need is a bra-fitting appointment with a professional. Most department stores offer this, but book in advance to avoid disappointment, especially at weekends.
While posture can be affected by the size of bra you choose, a well-fitting bra helps your clothes look better on you too, and can even have a slimming effect.
It’s never too late.
Try this simple shoulder exercise. If you are already suffering from shoulder pain, try rolling your shoulders back in small rotations every day. Relax your shoulders and make 10 to 12 small slow backward rotations, keeping your chin down and being careful not to stretch your neck.
Help to strengthen your back
To help with back pain, try power extension. This stretches the front of the body while strengthening your back muscles.
Kneel behind a fitness ball with your feet flat on the wall. Drape your body over the ball. Straighten your legs, squeeze your glutes (bum) and lift your upper body up off the ball. Hold for a long count of five. To move out of this pose, bend your knees and drape your body over the ball again. Repeat this move approximately five times.
If you think you need more to help relieve your symptoms, get in touch with our friendly receptionists to book a consultation with one of our team. Our chiropractic clinic in Torquay is open Monday to Saturday, so call us on 01803 329799 to secure your appointment.