Nike has launched the world’s first sports hijab to help open up sport to Muslim women.
After months of anticipation, Nike’s Pro Hijab is now available in the UK and around the world at the cost of £24.99.
Tested by US champion fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad, the pioneering garment is breathable and lightweight, designed to fit women “like a second skin” and not interfere with movement.
Muhammad, who this year had the first ever hijab-wearing Barbie modelled on her appearance, told of how she fell foul of false starts while competing because her heavy hijab impeded her hearing.
“It really sunk in how much my previous hijab was hindering my performance when I tried the Nike Pro Hijab,” says Muhammad.
“Suddenly, I could hear, I wasn’t as hot and it felt like my body was able to cool itself down better and faster.”
Nike said the Pro Hijab will help to make sports a more inclusive space for Muslim women.
Statistics from Sport England show that just 18 per cent of Muslim women take part in regular sport, compared to 30 per cent of the total female population.
Other hijabi athletes, including runner Manal Rostom, have praised the garment’s innovation.
“It inspires me to reach greater heights and to run farther distances,” says Rostom, who recently completed the New York Marathon in the Nike Pro Hijab.
“And I believe it’s going to inspire girls worldwide to follow their passion for sport."