Dragonwing Girl Blog
I want to start by saying that most older teen female swimmers HAVE bodies. They have hips, thighs, butts, breasts, shoulders and some curves. They have confidence. Looking like a string bean is out. Looking and being strong and powerful is in.
This a big change for me as a former high school and college distance runner. I am short (good for a distance runner) but more solidly built than a toothpick. For most distance runners, it really is a case of “less is more.” For years my coaches bugged me about losing weight, so I would be faster.
Back to swimming. Swimmers who are training hard eat a LOT. Not junk. But high quality calories—carbs, fats, proteins. That tremendous caloric output during heavy training has to be matched by a healthy caloric intake. Anna eats dinner #1 around 5:00 pm for her 6:00 pm practice. She gets home around 8:30 pm, showers, and then has dinner #2 which is more like a heavy snack. It usually involves some fruit, peanut butter, or leftovers from dinner #1.
So yes, women swimmers have women’s bodies. They are expected to train, to eat well, and to swim their fastest. Swimmers have broad shoulders and strong bodies, and those are something to be admired because they represent dedication and hard work.
So why are teen girls leaving the sports they love? Here are two common reasons given by teens.
- Breast discomfort
- Self-consciousness about their developing bodies
So when is the right time to introduce sports bras to your daughter?It's not about age. It's about development -emotional and physical. At younger ages, before breast tissue develops, training bras and cami's are perfect protection for sensitive nipples and provide modest coverage underneath clothing. Coverage and fitting in help with awkward feelings. Once breast tissue emerges, even at smaller sizes, running and motions typical to many sports may become painful.
Confidence. Comfort. Support.As your daughter develops, confidence, comfort and support come into play and determine what type of support bra or top girls need and when. Talk with your daughter about her sports gear and what she'll need as she continues playing. If you're taking the time to find the best fitting cleats and gear, her base layers need to have the equal consideration. And, like sporting equipment, investing in high-quality garments will provide a better performance, resist staining and odors, and will last longer as it goes through multiple washings. Look for moisture-wicking and stretchy performance fabrics to increase comfort and reduce chafing. How to find the right sports bra for your athletic daughter. Start the selection process before shopping. Sports bras come in a variety of styles and support levels. Talk about what she likes - everything from color, to fit and design. Then, review options to get an idea of what works for her body and her sport. Please keep in mind two important factors to excellent support. 1) the amount of fabric on the back. 2) the width of the bottom band. To find the right fit, measure the bust and chest to determine the best size to start and be prepared to try adjacent sizes until you find one that doesn't pinch, gap, or slide. If your daughter won't let you measure the bust, at a minimum do the bottom band of the chest. It will give you a starting point.
Dragonwing Girl Gear Founder, MaryAnne Gucciardi says "your daughter might have you hand them back and forth as she tries them on, until she finds one that she likes,".... "Be patient. If you let her control the conversation, then she'll feel in control of her body.”
Find your Dragonwing SizeUse this easy sizing guide to help find the best fit for Dragonwing bras and support base layers. Sports are as much a psychological exercise as it is physical. Removing distractions of poor-fitting bras, bounce due to lack of adequate support, and providing coverage boosts confidence and lets your daughter focus on what she loves -the skill-building fun of sports and being active. Dragonwing has styles designed to go from school to the field, accommodating afternoon practices without giving up style or comfort. Extra side coverage on our bras removes the worry of being exposed when uniforms are too big or cut for boys and lets your daughter focus on strength and not worry about underwear malfunction. Girls are also going through rapid growth spurts during their pre-teen and tween years, and you may need to check the fit of their sports bras regularly to ensure a good fit. Summary 1. Girls should begin wearing a sports bra when breast tissue emerges 2. Talk to your daughter about style and performance preferences before shopping 3. Measure before shopping 4. Look for quality fabrics and construction 5. Be prepared to try different styles to find what's right for her Read ► This one thing could keep your tween girl in sports. Tre Harrington from NonperfectParenting.com shares what makes Dragonwing Girl Gear different.
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There have been many articles and efforts to improve safety on the soccer field for women and girls. As an update to our posts of six years ago, I provide new information on prevention and training alternatives from Cindy Parlow Cone and Excelle.com
Our original articles are here:
and new information can be found here:
Check out these excellent video on the what Cindy Parlow Cone's experience learning to head the ball at 18 -and still being a World Cup Champ and Olympian!
- The material keeps her cool and dry, so it is perfect for any activity. - The straps are adjustable, so she will be able to wear it for quite awhile and adjust it as she grows - The racer back design is great for her posture and looks very sporty. - The padding can be removed for washing or if less coverage is desired.My daughter wants to wear this cami every day now, so I have been washing it constantly. Even after 10+ washes, the cami still looks as good as new. I am so excited that these camis are on Kickstarter now. I plan on stocking up and buying more in multiple colors. Thank you for creating such a high quality product that makes my daughter feel confident with her body.
What a girl wears under her uniform can help her feel confident and play her best. Undergarments that are comfortable, fit great, and provide appropriate coverage empower girls to play the sports they love without being distracted by droopy straps, bras or shirts that ride up, or bunching shorts.4. PLAN AHEAD FOR COOLER WEATHER. While it may be hot and humid now, the arrival of cool, fall weather always seems to surprise us. Afternoon practices and games – or the trip to and from school -- can quickly turn chilly or downright cold. A pair of leggings and a long-sleeve top under sports gear can keep a girl athlete warm, agile, and in the game. Moisture-wicking fabric is a must, so the sweat moves away from the skin and girls stay dry and warm. When shopping, consider the sport as well as the fit. Many soccer girls love our Capri-length Chill Weight Leggings because they don’t interfere with shin guards. 5. THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS A GIRL NEEDS ON HER FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL WON'T FIT INTO HER BACKPACK OR GYM BAG. She carries these treasures inside herself: a spirit of adventure and curiosity, a desire to learn and tackle new challenges, and a sense of confidence in herself.
**********A slightly revised version of this post originally appeared on the Sports Mom Survival Guide, a great resource for parents of young athletes with tips, ideas, and recipes.