Comments on the importance of wearing a custom-fitted corset when tightlacing, from the medical perspective:

(Prompted by a more specific question)

It is possible that pressure spots, particularly on the ribs, are exacerbated by tightlacing with a non-custom made corset. This occurs because a custom made corset tends to follow the natural contour of the torso and, when contracting it, it will uniformly enhance the shape -- the key being "uniform." With an off-the-peg corset you could get lucky, but chances are that the lines are different and pressure will localize and cause pressure spots. The localized pressure may pinch muscles and sometimes nerves, causing discomfort or cramping.  Pain across the back is an indication that pressure is not evenly distributed.

Also, it should be noted that corsets that are tight in the waist, but very loose around the chest, allow the ribcage to move or rotate within the corset, which can cause great discomfort and skin problems. It is important that when the corset is made tight in the waist, the pressure diminishes evenly towards the top, meaning that the corset should be tight at the lower 3..4 ribs as well, less so for the next and so on. This will stabilize the ribcage and avoid rib discomfort.



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