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When you're shopping for a workout shirt, the first thing to remember is that sizes vary with brands and styles. Some athletic shirts have a fitted silhouette while others have a loose, relaxed fit. Ideally, try a shirt on before you buy it. If you're buying a shirt as a base layer, you may want the smaller of two sizes so it fits closer to your skin, but if you are buying a heavier shirt to wear as an outer layer, you might find that a size larger than your usual shirt size is more comfortable.
Some athletic shirts describe sizes based on chest measurements. To determine your chest size, use a measuring tape and measure around the fullest part of the chest, wrapping under the arms and around the shoulder blades.
Athletic shirts also may describe sizes in terms of sleeve length. To determine your sleeve length, place a shirt flat on the floor, and use a fabric measuring tape to measure from the center of the back of the neck, across the top of the shoulder, and down to the wrist.
Some sports shirts are available in petite and tall sizes; petite shirts are generally cut 1 inch shorter in torso length and 1.5 inches shorter in sleeve length. Tall sizes are generally cut 1.5 inches longer in torso length and 2 inches longer in sleeve length.