Nike has unveiled a hijab for Muslim female sportsperson to mark the International Women’s Day.
The ‘Nike Pro Hijab’, has been in development for a year , is made from mesh for “optimal breathability.” According to the company, athletes contributed input into the product, and figure skater Zahra Lari was among those who tested it.
The Nike Pro Hijab has been a year in the making, but its impetus can be traced much further back to Nike’s founding mission, to serve athletes. The brand has underscored this commitment with the introduction of Middle Eastern stores, collections inspired by Nike’s roster of elite female athletes, women’s races, Nike Run Clubs and the NTC App in ArabicNike statement
The pull-on hijab includes tiny holes for air circulation and an elongated back so it will not come untucked. It will come in three colours: black, vast grey and obsidian.
Lari, a hopeful for the Winter Olympics next year in Pyeongchang, South Korea, posted photos of herself wearing the hijab on her Instagram page. “Can’t believe this is finally here!!” she wrote.
Beaverton-based athletic apparels giant Nike said the hijab will be available for sale next year.
Last summer, fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad of New York became the first Muslim American woman to compete for the United States wearing a hijab at the Olympics. She earned a bronze medal at the Rio Games. The U-17 Women's World Cup last October in Jordan marked the first time Muslim players wore headscarves during a FIFA event. Soccer's international governing body formally lifted a ban on head coverings in 2014, recognising Muslim and Sikh players.
Nike said the recent viral video campaign that featured female Middle Eastern athletes entitled “What will they say about you?” was a precursor of the launch of the new hijab.