Aug 31, 10

Shock Absorber celebrates 15 years of supporting women in sport

Shock Absorber celebrates 15 years of supporting women in sport

This September Shock Absorber, the UK’s leading sports bra brand, celebrates 15 years of providing expert breast support to a nation of UK women who are more active than ever before.

Recent research* revealed that the number of women exercising in the UK has risen to 12million (+17per cent vs 2005) and last year the value of the sports bra market increased by 22 per cent**, reflecting a rise in consumer awareness of the need to wear the correct breast support during sport.

However, while the percentage of women wearing a sports bra is increasing, a staggering 68 per cent (8.2million) still do not wear one while exercising, which represents a huge opportunity for education and conversion to purchase.

Launched in 1995 as a result of research conducted at an Edinburgh-based university, it took two years of biomechanical research, prototypes, trials and road testing by Olympic gold medallist Sally Gunnell to bring the first Shock Absorber sports bra to market.

Since then other inspirational athletes integral to Shock Absorber’s growing popularity have included world-renowned tennis player Anna Kournikova and champion long-jumper Jade Johnson.

In 2005 and 2009 Shock Absorber conducted ground-breaking breast movement research studies with breast health expert Dr Joanna Scurr at Portsmouth University, and its 2009 research informed the recent launch of its first-ever sports specific bra range, with bespoke features designed specifically for individual sports.

Shock Absorber sports bras are scientifically proven to reduce breast bounce by up to 78 per cent***, twice as effective as wearing a normal bra to exercise in, which only reduces bounce by an average of 38 per cent****.

This September sees Shock Absorber upgrade one of its key lines - the D+ Max Sports Bra (N109) - to ensure it offers the ultimate comfort and performance for the wearer.

Shock Absorber spokesperson, Kirsty Kothakota, says: “As Shock Absorber celebrates its 15th birthday, we are proud to say the brand has always strived to provide the best possible support to sporting women and retailers alike.

“Looking ahead to the next 15 years, we are committed to investing in research and design, and as female participation in diverse sports increases we continue to educate women about the importance of wearing a sports bra and treating it as an essential piece of sports kit.”

For information on supporting POS materials available contact your local Shock Absorber sales representative or call the Shock Absorber sales coordinator on 01475 291450.
* Shock Absorber Omnibus 2009.
** Kantar World Panel data 52 weeks to 25 April 2010.
***University of Portsmouth 2009 (Scurr et al) - tested against no bra condition and related to style 5044.
****Source: University of Portsmouth Breast Movement study 2005, commissioned by Shock Absorber.

Shock Absorber history timeline
1994: Shock Absorber was developed as a result of research conducted at Edinburgh-based university. Study showed that wearing a sports bra while exercising reduced breast movement and delayed long term breast sag.

1995: Shock Absorber launches offering four styling choices, varying impact levels and wide size range (up to G cup). Top athlete Sally Gunnell supports launch and endorses range.

1997: Anna Kournikova endorsement begins.

2000: ‘Only the ball should bounce’ advertising campaign with Anna Kournikova.

2001: Follow-up advertising campaign ‘brings everything to a standstill’ with Anna Kournikova.

2002: Third Anna Kournikova campaign ‘Russian Pilot, Nasa Technology, No Lift Off’.

2004: Jade Johnson promotes brand around 2004 Athens Olympics.

2005: Two major pieces of research conducted. 1) Scientific testing at the University of Portsmouth, 2) Category, brand and consumer research.

2009: Launch of first-ever sports specific sports bra support, RUN, BALL RACKET.
New science: over 18 months of testing, design and development.
Ambassador: 5,000m runner Laura Kenney.

2010: Celebration of 15 years’ of providing expert breast support.

Shock Absorber Facts You Never Knew:
• For the average UK woman who runs 5k twice a week, her breasts have bounced a staggering 795,600metres over the past 15 years*.

• Approximately two million more women are regularly exercising now compared to 15 years ago**.

• In 1995 the first-ever Shock Absorber sports bra size went up to an F cup, but now sizes have been extended up to HH to reflect the increasing average UK breast size.

* Based on average D cup woman running 5km three times per week with an average boob bounce per stride of 6.8cm (University of Portsmouth Breast Movement Study 2005, commissioned by Shock Absorber).
** Shock Absorber Omnibus 2009.

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