Tired of unisex and oversized? These awesome pieces of workout gear were engineered specifically for women
Whether you realize it or not, a lot of workout gear and accessories are actually unisex. That means you’re not only moving in fabrics and on frames built for a less feminine body, but you’re also missing out on great colors only the fairer sex can have fun with. From wearable tech to race day gear, the fitness world is full of products made for women’s sizes and shapes, including GPS watches, headphones, heart rate monitors, and more. Check out these options we love.
The new Bia Multisport GPS Watch was designed by women for the contours of the female wrist—meaning the timepiece sits between instead of on your wrist bones ($279; bia-sport.com). The lightweight watch interacts with a small GPS clip that hooks onto your waist, shirt, or anywhere really. The quick connect GPS gets you into your run, swim, or other workout quickly, then automatically uploads data to training logs like Strata or MapMyFitness. Perhaps the watch’s most innovative feature is an SOS safety alert: The press of a button will send a text message and map of your location to pre-designated contacts. Or opt into live tracking when friends or family need real-time data of your whereabouts.
A bra that’s also a heart rate monitor? You bet. Available in five colors, the adidas miCoach Seamless Sports Bra ditched the constrictive black straps of most heart rate monitors and instead knit sensor fibers right into the fabric ($54.95; numetrex.com). Snap any compatible Bluetooth, ANT+ or analog transmitter (like the NuMetrex Transmitter) into the pocket in the band of the bra, and you’re ready to sweat ($19; numetrex.com). (Just need a basic bra? Check out The Best Sports Bras for Every Body Type.)
Forget wearing “unisex” sunglasses. Made for the contours of a women’s face, the Oakley Miss Conduct Squared sunglasses will seamlessly take you from your morning run to Sunday brunch ($150-$200; oakley.com). Available in four colors with optional polarized lenses, the rimless glasses are incredibly lightweight, impact resistant, and block all those harmful UV rays. Plus, they’ve got great peripheral vision without compromising coverage. Looking for a sportier frame? The Oakley Commit SQ is also made to fit female faces looking for maximum performance from their eyewear ($160-$170; oakley.com). (Yikes! That’s pricey—but maybe worth the dough. Find out How to Tell If a Pair of Sunglasses Is Worth It).
Do you have a hard time finding ear buds that stay put? Designed for women by women, Koss FitBuds ($29.99; koss.com) are just six millimeters in diameter—33 percent smaller than the average ear bud. With three included cushion sizes, they deliver the perfect fit for even the smallest ears. Available in five refreshing colors from soft coral to mint green, these headphones are also sweat resistant, lightweight, and provide quality sound. Prefer a clip? Try Koss FitClips ($29.99; koss.com).
If you’re borrowing your boyfriend’s road bike, it’s time to get your own wheels—and ones that fit. Specialized’s Dolce line of wheels for women are built to match a women’s geometry—that is, the unique angles of female figures (starting at $770; specialized.com). (Compared to men, women typically have wider hips, narrower shoulder, and shorter torsos—just to name a few. This all affects how well a bike fits.) The Specialized Dolce also comes standard with a women’s saddle to relieve soft tissue pressure in the seat and shallower handlebars for a closer reach to the brakes. It all adds up to a more comfortable ride that will keep you on the road as long as you want, instead of as long as you can sit on the seat. (Get your wheels just in time! Pro Cycling Is About to Get Its Moment in the Spotlight.)
Unlike running, the sport of triathlon is still male-dominated. Just 36.5 percent of USA Triathlon’s members were female in 2013. And unfortunately, most triathlon gear reflects that with masculine, black designs flooding the market. Enter MooMotion, a New York City-based line for the female triathlete. Founded by design-school grad and three-time Ironman finisher, Melissa Moo Harkins, MooMotion combines high performance features with bright colors and thoughtful touches—like a hidden cleavage pocket in the Rosa Tri Jersey ($87; moomotionsports.com). Throw in UPF 50+ fabrics, figure-flattering waistbands, and flat seams for ultimate comfort and you’ve got tri gear that's fashionable and functional. (Running your first tri? Follow this 12-Week Olympic Triathlon Training Plan for Beginners!)
We all know that women have special needs down there. But did you know that up to 30 percent of young athletes experience exercise-induced incontinence? Researchers in Poland found it’s especially prevalent among women in high-impact sports like running, gymnastics, and basketball. Thank goodness for Dear Kate’s Sport Collection underwear ($32-$48; dearkates.com). Available in hipsters and thongs, the fabric’s outer layer is leak resistant and the inner full lining holds up to three teaspoons of liquid. Need less coverage? A mini lining is available too.