News Brief

Nike Announces New 'Pro Hijab' for Muslim Women Athletes

Nike announced on Tuesday, that it will be releasing a new performance hijab for Muslim athletes.

Last year at the Olympics, Egypt's beach volleyball team made history as they became the first Egyptian team to participate in the competition since it began in 1966, and the first to compete in the game in full sleeves and hijab.


Athletic wear for women who wear hijab is expanding, as sports retailer, Nike, announced on Tuesday, that it will be releasing the "Pro Hijab," a sportswear version of the hijab, that they hope will "inspire more women and girls in the Middle East, who face barriers and limited access to sport."

According to the company, the new athletic gear was tested by Muslim athletes from a range of sports. This helped determine the right fabric and style for the "Pro Hijab." Nike says that the line will feature adjustable and breathable designs that "will come in dark neutral colors, at the request of the athletes, with the Nike Swoosh coming above the left ear to showcase the hijab's pinnacle performance nature."

In order to assure that the design met "cultural variances," the sports company reportedly reached out to community advocates from various countries for direction on how to make the design accomidating to various styles of hijab.

"The Nike Pro Hijab has been a year in the making," says the company in a press release. "But its impetus can be traced much further back to Nike's founding mission, to serve athletes, with the signature addendum: If you have a body, you're an athlete."

Nike launched its campaign last month with an ad highlighting Muslim women athletes, narrated by Saudi Arabian actor Fatima Al-Banawi. View it below.

The Pro Hijab will hit Nike stores in 2018.

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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