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  • Author: Wendy Hedger x
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Jennifer White, Joanna Scurr and Wendy Hedger

Comparisons of breast support requirements during overground and treadmill running have yet to be explored. The purpose of this study was to investigate 3D breast displacement and breast comfort during overground and treadmill running. Six female D cup participants had retro-reflective markers placed on the nipples, anterior superior iliac spines and clavicles. Five ProReflex infrared cameras (100 Hz) measured 3D marker displacement in four breast support conditions. For overground running, participants completed 5 running trials (3.1 m/s ± 0.1 m/s) over a 10 m indoor runway; for treadmill running, speed was steadily increased to 3.1 m/s and 5 gait cycles were analyzed. Subjective feedback on breast discomfort was collected using a visual analog scale. Running modality had no significant effect on breast displacement (p > .05). Moderate correlations (r = .45 to .68, p < .05) were found between breast discomfort and displacement. Stride length (m) and frequency (Hz) did not differ (p < .05) between breast support conditions or running modalities. Findings suggest that breast motion studies that examine treadmill running are applicable to overground running.

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Joanna Scurr, Jennifer White and Wendy Hedger

This study aimed to assess the trajectory of breast displacement in 3 dimensions during walking and running gait, as this may improve bra design and has yet to be reported. Fifteen D-cup participants had reflective markers attached to their nipples and trunk to monitor absolute and relative breast displacement during treadmill walking (5 kph) and running (10 kph). During the gait cycle, the breast followed a figure-of-eight pattern with four movement phases. Despite a time lag in resultant breast displacement compared with the trunk, similar values of breast displacement were identified across each of the four phases. Fifty-six percent of overall breast movement was vertical, suggesting that 3-D assessment and the elimination of trunk movement in 6 degrees of freedom are essential to accurately report breast displacement during the gait cycle.

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Claire Bridgman, Joanna Scurr, Jennifer White, Wendy Hedger and Heather Galbraith

Anecdotal reports suggest two-step star jumps cause excessive breast movement and discomfort, leading to recommendations for this activity as a diagnostic tool to determine effective breast support in a retail environment. The aim was to investigate multiplanar bare-breast kinematics during the two-step star jump and to establish the relationship between breast kinematics, discomfort and cup size. Thirty-nine females completed five two-step star jumps with no breast support after which breast discomfort was rated. To establish relative breast kinematics infrared cameras tracked the 3D co-ordinates of breast and body markers. Maximum resultant breast displacement, velocity and acceleration during jumping reached 18.7 cm, 93.1 cm·s−1 and 3.6 g, respectively. Significantly more vertical breast displacement (p < 0.01) and velocity (p < 0.01) occurred compared with mediolateral and anteroposterior kinematics. Breast discomfort increased as cup size increased (r = .61). Two-step star jumping stimulated multiplanar breast kinematics and high levels of breast discomfort. Therefore, this activity may be useful in a retail outlet to determine the function and comfort of a sports bra.