“BASKETBALL UNIFORMS DESIGNED FOR GIRLS WITH HIJABS PROVIDE MORE OPPORTUNITIES FOR WOMEN IN SPORTS
Amira Ali, right, battles Rayan Ali for possession of the basketball on June 16 during an East African Muslim Lady Warriors practice game in Minneapolis. The girls were wearing new uniforms designed in part by Amira, 12, to allow them to move freely while preserving the modesty their religion requires.
From specialty women-only brands like Athleta and Sweaty Betty to the expansive women’s lines from sports brands like Nike and Reebok, there’s no shortage of wardrobe choices for women looking to work out. Young girls and teens are now served by brands like Under Armour and Adidas, as well as activewear lines from favorites like Old Navy and Forever 21. But in the midst of the steady stream of running shorts and tank tops with built-in sports bras, one group of girls has been traditionally left out: Muslim girls who observe their religion’s dress code.
In traditional Muslim culture, women must cover their heads and bodies when in the presence of men. But long flowing skirts and headscarves—called hijabs—can, predictably, make it difficult to perform activities like running and jumping. In the past, many Muslim women had to either find a male-free zone in which to practice in more comfortable clothing or forego playing sports altogether.
Share this article