Anon Sports Bra Requirement

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Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
Our gym requires all gymnasts ages 9 and up to wear a sports bra for practice and competition. My daughter recently turned 9 and I’m hesitant to force this on her as she has sensory issues to begin with and in no way needs a sports bra. Do your gyms require sports bras? If so, at what age? I’m just curious if our gym is an outlier.
 

Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
I think this is a wonderful requirement! By 9 some girls started wearing them either out of necessity or desire and the girls weren't always nice about it. My DD was a little older but was in a mixed age group where she was the oldest and she was teased. A dress code requirement takes teasing out of the equation.

My DD had sensory issues too but was more sensitive to wearing leos than the actual sports bra.
 

gymgal

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Aug 22, 2008
4,599
Sounds like it is an easy rule to ensure that everyone who needs one is wearing one. That way they don't have to have uncomfortable conversations. Dd's gym did not have a rule like that but I would have been ok with it as it is just another part of the "uniform" that makes sense in general. But I do understand your dilemma dealing with sensory issues. Perhaps buying several to allow your dd to find one she likes best, in the comfort of her own home and with her leo. If she wears a two piece swimsuit, you could associate that with the sports bra
 
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Carly

Proud Parent
Jan 3, 2016
279
No sports bra required at either of the 2 gyms that dd has gone to.

I would discuss it with the gym and explain your dd's sensory issues. Maybe they will make an exception for her.
 
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Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
Not something we would ever require, but I can kind of see that making a blanket policy avoids the situation where a child who should be wearing one isn’t. Does she have a crop top she is comfortable in (the kind she might wear under a loose singlet/tank top)? This might be an acceptable compromise.
 

Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
It's likely just a modesty issue. We did have coaches require a bra at meets because their competition leotard had very thin fabric that showed everything (and that was for all levels down to the littles, probably as young as 7). Many of the girls started wearing them for practice after that as well. Consider that seeing the details of breast development could make coaches uncomfortable, and could also lead to teasing or even bullying amongst the kids. Also, it is sometimes easier for a gym to require everyone to do something to solve a problem rather than call out particular kids on a sensitive topic.

There are lots of cute and comfy sports bras available these days. I'd suggest explaining the requirement to your daughter and taking her on a trip to Target and Kohls to find some cute and comfortable ones that she likes and is willing to wear. If the band creates a sensory issue, another suggestion is a nude toned bodysuit liner as used in ballet, we had several girls wear these to address the modesty issue instead of bras, but caution that gymnastics and ballet leotards are cut differently so it can be hard to find one that won't show.
 
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Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
This seriously brings me back to the most hysterical moment in my ODD's gym career! She was 8 years old and the youngest on her team by 1-4 years at that time. This was right around the time that Plum leos were becoming super popular our gym. The coaches sat the groups down and told them that once you hit age 10, you needed a sports bra if you wore a Plum or leo of similar fabric. They then also said that if "you begin to experience menstruation, find a female coach to help you."

I asked my kiddo what they were talking about and here was her take: "They said that you need to wear a bra or a thicker leo if you're 10. But I think if you're 11 or 12, you don't. And if you are experiencing frustration, talk to a coach. But only a girl coach can help you with it."

I was so lost until a parent of an older girl cleared it up!
 

Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
My daughter’s gym does not require sports bras. My 8 year old who doesn’t need one wears one though to be like the “big girls”. Walmart and dicks have some that feel very similar to leotard material.
 

rlm's mom

Proud Parent
Aug 21, 2021
278
39
Never heard of such a rule. But I wouldn’t be against one. Better the kids start early than too late. Your daughter will have to start at some point. Explain to hear the more she wears it the more comfortable it will get.
 

Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
This is definitely a blanket policy to avoid problems, similar to the “everyone wears deodorant” rule. I would give bras a try before asking for an exception. There should be plenty of options since you don’t have to worry about it giving actual support. I would try the thin seamless ones first. I’m currently fighting with my 9 year old to wear a bra every day to school because she has begun to develop and actually does need one, so I feel your pain. Hopefully you can find a type that doesn’t bother her. Maybe get adjustable straps and size up so that it doesn’t feel tight, and then you can shorten the straps if need be.
 

Madden3

Proud Parent
Aug 24, 2013
822
49
I have never heard of this and do not get such a policy at all. Sports bras are meant to provide support/prevent too much movement, and the point a girl needs a sports bra for sports should pretty much coincide with when the bra would help her be more comfortable doing her sport, not less. This happens at a different time for every girl. If leos are so thin they leave nothing to the imagination that is a garment problem not a body problem. Bodies are all different and learning to love your own body should not depend on forcing someone else to wear something that makes no sense for their body.
 

Anonymous Post

Secret Identity
Feb 16, 2022
424
Our gym has a similar policy (for both bras and deodorant). It avoids embarrassment (things show through a leo before a t-shirt) and having to "call out girls" who need bras but aren't wearing one (or deodorant).

For girls with sensory issues, I highly recommend https://bleuetgirl.com/. Their basic bra is pretty much just a half cami and very comfortable. Great for girls that don't need much support. It's also a woman owned small business that supports girls in the foster system!
 
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