Nike's Pro-Hijab Sportswear 'Might Change Face Of Sport For Muslim Girls'

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    Design Design Mar 15, 2017 12:39 PM EDT


    Nike has designed a "single-layer stretchy hijab" that makes the sportswear comfortable for Muslim girls. However, it gets a number of mixed responses.

    It was released by Nike for female Muslim athletes on International Women's Day. Nike examined the various worries of competitive athletes. Many commentators were anxious that the sportswear would influence their performance on the field.

    Weightlifter Amna Al Haddad from the United Arab Emirates, said that more weight, the likelihood of less mobility and lack of breathability tends to obstruct her concentration. But she observed that as a hijabi, it was important to understand what was going to cover the head. While women would always come up with ideas and ways to find comfort in their dresses, having the number one sport and fitness brand facilitating the process was going to transform the whole process and begin a new kind of change. It would "encourage a new generation of athletes to pursue sports professionally, and without us athletes who fought for this right and made it happen, Nike wouldn't 'just do it'," according to Gulf News. 

    Nike designed a performance hijab that looked like other pro products that seem inconspicuous, and act "almost as a second skin." Its final, pull-on design is made from a single layer of Nike Pro's power mesh fabric. It is a polyester dress that is full of tiny holes making it breathable. Still, it is totally opaque.

    However, the pro-hijab dresses, constructed from one layer of breathable power mesh fabric, started a debate on issues related to feminism and women's rights, according to Dezeen. A number of supporters and opponents put up some comments.

    "Is this a masterclass in viral marketing mistakes or just bad taste?" asked Z-dog, one observer. He wondered whether the headwear was a symbol that communicated oppression. Another commentator, Nada, pointed out that it is not oppressive to let women opt for whatever they liked to wear.

    A critic, CariHislop, declared that the American sportswear giant was right in knowing what it was doing. "My cynicism klaxon is blaring. Pro Hijab, also known as free publicity in Muslim countries for Nike," she said.

    The pro Hijab clothes are the result of a collaboration between Nike and other female Muslim athletes, such as weightlifter Amna Al Haddad and figure skater Zahra Lari.


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