by Megan Vigue, assistant manager – Marathon Sports Boston

As a female runner whrivalbrao also works at a running store, I am very familiar with the importance of replacing my sportsbras often (generally every six months or so). However, I am guilty of letting mine go a bit past their lifespans. A good, supportive sportsbra costs at least $50, and I don’t always prioritize fitting that in my budget on a yearly basis. So when I do buy one, I am very picky with what I select – it needs to be supportive, comfortable, and cute. Although I didn’t expect to like the Nike Pro Rival Bra (based on appearances), I am happy to report that a few weeks of wear-testing has left me pleasantly surprised.

At first glance, this bra looked a bit intimidating – the obvious molded cups threw me off a bit. However, it is these cups that make this bra so supportive; it offers complete support and controls bounce without compressing everything together and giving that ever-so-attractive ‘uniboob’ look.

rivalbra2Putting on the bra for my first run, I was surprised at how easily it went on without a back-clasp. I instantly appreciated the molded cups, as I didn’t need to struggle with any awkward adjusting from everything being crammed together. As an aesthetic bonus, the v-neck shape allowed the bra to be discreet under a lower-cut tank top.

During the run, I had intended on focusing on how the bra felt and performed, but it was so unobtrusive that I totally forgot that I was supposed to be wear-testing it! It provided more support than a tighter fitting compression bra while being completely unnoticeable. There was ZERO MOVEMENT, which makes me draw comparisons between this bra and the cult favorite, Moving Comfort. Having run a marathon in a Moving Comfort bra, I can safely say that the Nike Pro Rival is a solid competitor in terms of support.

rival backWhile the support was great, I think my favorite part of the bra was the super soft, almost silky fabric. It felt great against the skin and kept me cool on a hot, humid morning. It dried really quickly afterwards, which is always a plus.

The only issue I had with this bra was the lack of a hook and loop back-clasp to make the fit more customizable. I was in between band sizes, so I went with the smaller one to make sure it was tight enough to support me. If the bra had a back-clasp, I think putting it on the loosest setting would have improved the fit without sacrificing support.

Overall, I definitely recommend the Nike Pro Rival Bra to any female runner looking for a solid, supportive sportsbra to add to her rotation.

The Nike Pro Rival Bra [MSRP $65.00] is available in sizes 30B to 38DD in all Marathon Sports locations. [FIND A LOCATION NEAR YOU]