from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A type of bra used by girls, usually teenage girls when their busts are still small.


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  • They used to be for sale in the Sears Roebuck catalog. Really.

    Later. . .

    Eek! They are still around. Unbelievable.

    June 30, 2007

  • This term always reminds me of training wheels on a bicycle. As though you have to learn the appropriate and proper way to carry around those mammary glands. ;-)

    July 2, 2007

  • Call me an ignorant man, but what is this? I confess, I thought the same thing as reesetee, only seriously.

    July 2, 2007

  • I cannot breathe...just a minute.

    A training bra is a more comfortable version of a sports bra. It's for girls who are just beginning to need one. Personally, I used to forget to wear one, so I always thought that that was the "training" aspect. More recently, I've discovered that there is a "right" way to don a bra, and that way is actually pretty complicated.

    July 2, 2007

  • I hope all my children are sons.

    Seeing how I am a Smith, my odds are pretty good.

    July 2, 2007

  • How does having the last name Smith affect the likelihood of having sons?

    July 2, 2007

  • It's the most common name in America for a couple of reasons, but primarily because there are so many males to continue the name (as opposed to females who assume another name after marriage). The Smith family is notoriously male. In my own particular strand of it, my grandparents had three sons and one daughter, and my dad had three sons and no daughters. The Smith family reunions are HYUGE and predominantly Y-chromosomal.

    July 2, 2007

  • So that explains why you'd never heard of a training bra before. ;-)

    Do you attend these reunions, u?

    July 2, 2007

  • Not often. I live a few thousand miles away from where my Smith clan is concentrated, and it's hard to get away to see them. I will be attending my first reunion in... too long... this August, but it's intentionally a small reunion for just a couple generations of Smiths rather than the whole mob.

    July 2, 2007

  • Thanks all,

    Jennaren, I completely overlooked the current meaning of "training bra." In that sense, I think "training" refers to physical exercise--a bra to wear while training, working out, exercising, whatever you want to call it.

    On the other hand, the 1950s sense was different. Essentially, they were bras for girls who did not need bras yet.

    I always thought it was such a funny term. What needs to be trained? Perhaps the training bra is like a trellis that traines vines? Perhaps as you say, resettee, the girls must be trained to carry those mammary glands around.

    I always thought the "training" had to do with teaching girls to buy bras. Or perhaps it was too dangerous for girs to wear real bras before the girls were properly trained.

    It played into young girls hopes and anxieties about womanhood. In my cohort, using a bra was a treasured symbol.

    Soon after that came the era of bra burning, but that is another story.

    July 2, 2007