Background: The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of breast size on upper extremity flexibility, back extensors strength, back extensors endurance, body image and physical activity level.
Method: A total of 80 female students (n=20 in each group; A, B, C, D bra cup size) between the ages of 18-25 years participated in this study. The physical fitness assessment was done by; Shoulder Reach Test (SRT) for upper extremity flexibility, back and leg dynamometer for back extensors strength, Sorensen Test (ST) for back extensors endurance and 3 Minute Step Test (3 MST) for cardiorespiratory fitness. The Body Image Scale (BIS) for assessing the body image and the International Physical Activity Questionnaires (IPAQ) for evaluating the physical activity level was also used.
Results: The right upper extremity flexibility of woman with B cup size were significantly less flexible than the A cup size (p=0.004). The cardiorespiratory fitness of the woman with A and B cup sizes were significantly different than the woman with D cup size (p=0.001 and p=0.002, respectively). The activity level of the woman with D cup size was significantly less than those with C cup size (p=0.007). The other parameters of physical fitness (i.e. back extensors strength, back extensors endurance) and body image were not significantly different when comparing woman with different cup sizes.
Conclusion: The results of this study showed that cardiorespiratory fitness and physical activity levels of the woman with D cup size were different when comparing to the woman’s with smaller cup sizes. With the light of this study we could suggest for the woman with bigger cup sizes to increase their activity levels in order to prevent possible problems like reduced physical fitness and disturbed body image in the future.