Sports bras have as many styles as they do colors and patterns. Some styles are meant to be pretty and flirty, whereas others are hard-working and practical. The racerback sports bra is more than just an aesthetic; the design serves a function that allows women of all shapes and sizes to work out, get fit, and enjoy an active life.
Let’s get into the racerback design, and break down what it accomplishes.
What Are Racerback Sports Bras?
The racerback is modeled after the bras worn by female track and sprinting stars. They tend to have a simple design with extra thick and supportive straps, allowing full-figured women to work out with confidence.
The bra straps meet and combine in the back, providing greater lift and reinforcement. This style of bra works especially well for high-impact activities, and it’s common to see high-compression sports bras featuring racerback straps.
These bras tend to be durable, comfy, and wear well under a shirt or as a workout top. The greater coverage and support means you can wear them in more settings, and many designs would work just as well on the beach as in the gym.
The wider, softer straps mean they’re less likely to dig into the skin, making them a comfortable all-day option. The Y-shaped rear strap design allows the weight of your breasts to be more evenly distributed, allowing you to move comfortably and naturally.
With a combination of thicker fabrics, ample padding, and moisture-wicking fabrics, these bras also tend to do well year-round. They’re snug in the Winter and breathe great in the Summer, too.
The easy, good-news answer to this question is…. Everything! Racerbacks come in a wide range of styles and tend to offer medium-to-high-compression. The better support and hold make them perfect for hiking, walking, biking, martial arts, racing, lifting, and even gentle activities like yoga.
The range of colors and designs makes finding the right racerback easy. Consider the activity you’ll be pursuing, and the level of compression and coverage you’ll need. Make sure that the fabric is designed to help keep you comfy and dry, and that the bra features mesh, ports, or aeration to help keep you cool.
These bras tend to be quite a bit more adaptable than other styles, so feel free to wear them under shirts, sweaters, tees, and tank tops. In casual environments, they can even replace a tank top and wear naturally when sightseeing or relaxing around the yard.
So what are our favorite racerback bras? Let’s walk you through our top picks.
Our Top Racerback Sports Bras
Nike Women’s Swoosh Bra
The Swoosh from Nike is a really beautiful, minimalist bra that’s well-made and adaptable to a variety of sports and situations. The removable padding is designed to stay in place as you work out, and the simple, feminine design works great with any outfit. It’s made from at least 75% recycled polyester, making it better for the environment, too.
The colors that the Swoosh come in are truly fantastic. Choose from Coral Chalk, Baltic Blue, Neptune Green, Canyon Rust, Black, Pinksicle, Desert Berry, Rosewood, Viotech, Lapis, Adobe, Picante Red, Smoke Grey, Valerian Blue, and White and sizes XS through XL.
AloYoga Airlift Advantage Racerback Bra
The Airlift Advantage by AloYoga is a classic, streamlined racerback bra with plenty of airflow, and more upper-back skin exposure than many styles. This can help an athlete stay cooler while providing support and comfort. It offers light, everyday support for walking, yoga, sightseeing, and gentle hand weights training.
Its beautiful, flattering design enfolds the upper body in a way that won’t dig into armpits or shoulders. Available in Black, Toffee, Espresso, Mars Clay, Classic Red, and Sugarplum Pink and sizes XS through L.
Lululemon Wunder Train Longline Bra
The Wunder Train Longline Bra from Lululemon is a medium-support, durable bra that works great for workouts, training, and light jogging. It’s got more coverage and a bit more compression, making it perfect for a wider range of activities, and a great choice for outside Summer wear, too.
The generous underband and higher neckline allow this versatile, well-made bra to double as a tank top, and enjoy all-day wear. Available in Magenta Purple, Chambray, Java, Pomegranate, Black, and White and sizes 2 through 14.
Champion Show-Off Jogbra
Champion’s Show-Off Jogbra is a unique combination of cute and functional. The more feminine design is highly flattering, while the mesh fabric details and ample support keep you secure and confident while jogging. Unlike many other racerback bras, this one is adjustable, giving you the best features of a sports and a traditional bra.
The patented wicking fabric blend helps keep you dry and cool even in the most intense workouts. Available in Oxford Heather, White, Black, and Pinksicle, and sizes S through XL.
Brooks Drive 3 Pocket Run Bra
The Drive 3 Pocket Run Bra by Brooks is a well-made, reliable bra that works perfectly as a jogger. This amazing bra has the added benefit of coming with a hidden phone pocket. Wait, what? Yes! No need to cram your phone into skimpy legging pockets. Just stash it in the Drive 3 Pocket’s hidden back panel, and go.
You’ll also get excellent compression, fantastic move-with-you fabric, and a high-impact bra that works well in the gym, on the track, or around town. The higher neckline and multiple pockets also make it ideal for in-town shopping and casual meet-ups.
Available in Mint Mix, Hyper Pink, Lagoon Speckle Print, Speckle Print Empower Her (similar to an Adobe color), Black, Blue Ash, Vivid Teal, Jamberry, RR (Brown) and Copper Glitch Print, Black Wildflower Print, and Goldenhour and sizes 30 through 40.
Racerback sports bras are functional and practical, and come in a wide array of designs, colors, and styles to meet your needs.
They tend to be medium or high compression, and the Y-shaped back straps give extra support and stability where you need them. Make sure the support level of the bra you choose is appropriate for the activity you’ll be pursuing.
They also tend to work well around town and many of them can double as a tank. Their thicker, softer fabric makes them ideal for wearing under a sweater, t-shirt, or turtleneck in the colder months, too.