Bikes, bras and bars

Figleaves recently went fitness crazy in a bid to put our sports bras to the ultimate test; fitness gurus working up their sweat in a high intensity spin class.


The svelte, toned ladies arrived for their session with Olivia Hawthorne at London Bank’s Another_Space, and each donned a different sports bra from Figleaves.

As the cyclists were aptly summoned to get ‘boobs to bar’ for an intense spin, were the sports bras going to stand the test of such physical beings?

And the answer is of course, yes (phew!).

And not only did the class allow real women to road test our sports bras while exercising, it also helped even them realise the need for a supportive, perfectly-fitting sports bra when training.

However, the bike session for fitness guru Charlie at The Runner Beans (@therunnerbeans) began with a surprising lack of confidence.

She reveals, “As we all waited for class to start, I was the only one still with my top on over my bra, waiting for the last minute to take it off… The truth is, I still don’t feel confident in just a sports bra.”

“I’d always thought of the sports bra girls as intimidating; the hardcore bunch that know what they’re doing and make it look effortless.”

But thankfully she now realises that while showing off your sports bra isn’t for everyone, “having a well fitted sports bra is important, even if you’re not flaunting it. Believe me when I say, if you’re wearing the wrong sports bra, you will know about it (I have the scars to prove it). Not only will it be worth it in terms of comfort and reduced bounce, but having a bra that fits right and makes you feel good is such a great confidence booster.”

Charlie put the Chantelle High Impact sports bra to the test, and is delighted to report, “It gave a great shape, lifting and rounding them rather than flattening. I liked that they gave full coverage so there was no chance of spilling out during the spin class, and I felt secure with tight straps that link together to create a racer back.”

Using spinning to train around a knee injury, Hannah Cluley (@hannahrosecluley) has become a massive advocate of the cycle exercise. However, despite her active lifestyle, she admits, “I was someone who kind of assumed I could get away with wearing yoga sports bras (little to no support) to spin. I have now realised I need to switch up my game and make sure I wear a correctly supportive and well fitted sports bra when I go to spin classes.”

While spin is technically low impact, particularly on lower joints making it ideal for her knee rehab, Hannah clarifies that being up out of your seat creates high impact to the upper body.

“Wearing my new  Anita Maximum Control sports bra I definitely felt more supported and I have made a vow to myself to wear a proper fitting sports bra from now on whenever I go to my spin classes! Figleaves have so many designs and colours on offer, and they go all the way up to a 46H, so there will literally be something for everyone on there. It’s truly amazing that they cater to such a wide variety of women, as opposed to just going up to a D cup like many brands that sell a sports bra (or even worse just having S, M or L as an option).”

On the other end of the size spectrum, Lisa at Wildcat Fitness (@wildcatfit) claims, “Mother nature blessed me with absolutely nothing in the breast department.”

So she was road testing (or studio testing) the Freya Freestyle soft crop top sports bra and soon realised the benefits of its support even for smaller sizes.

“I love that it fully supported me, but also that the racer back sat comfortably in between my shoulders, and the wide underband meant no digging in either. Basically it was extremely comfortable – and even dealt with the serious sweat I worked up no problem!”

“I actually think I’m going to be wearing this Freya Freestyle sports bra a lot – it felt great on, was totally seamless underneath my top, and the navy colour means it will go with absolutely anything. I may even have to get the Cherry Glow version too as I’m a sucker for anything pink!”

“I have to confess, not only did I not know that Figleaves offered such a fantastic range of sports bras and activewear, but that they also came in my size. They really do have something for every woman who wants to workout, look good and feel supported!”

Laura Barrett

Having styled for celebrity magazine shoots and written for many lifestyle brands, Figleaves Content Editor Laura Barrett is on hand to offer fashion news, style inspiration, trend updates and collection reviews.