Follow Vogue Arabia

This London University Just Created A Sports Hijab To Encourage Muslim Female Athletes

Courtesy of Brunel University London.

In an effort to bolster and encourage the participation of Muslim female athletes in sports, Britain’s Brunel University London in Uxbridge has just unveiled a high-performance sports hijab. This inclusive move marks a first for any educational institute in the United Kingdom.

The ultra-lightweight, stretchy fabric comes in two sizes to suit wearers’ various head shapes, and in a navy blue colorway branded with the university’s emblem. Featuring miniature, breathable holes for venting — the traditional headscarf is made out of cotton, and as a result can become hot and uncomfortable — the high-performance garment is a game-changer.

The decision to create the sports hijab came after a 2017 report by Sports England found that just 18% of Muslim women participate in sport. Upon realizing the lack of female participation in its sporting programs, especially amongst visibly Muslim women, the university took the initiative to create a lighter, more breathable garment for hijab-wearing athletes. “Brunel is one of only four UK universities to offer a free sports program, and we noticed that there was a gap in female sports participation,” explained Ranjeet Rathore, President of the Union of Brunel Students, who has led the hijab’s creation, in a statement.

“When we narrowed it down, we found the main gap to be in BAME female sports participation – specifically, we found there to be a barrier to Muslim women taking part in team sport,” he stated.

Many brands, including Siya and Raqtive, have previously introduced high-performance sports hijabs in their collections in an effort to cater to the expansive Muslim market. Notably, Nike almost broke the internet when it launched the Nike Pro Hijab — named one of Time’s 25 Best Inventions — at the end of 2017.

Now Read: You Won’t Believe How Much The Louvre Abu Dhabi Paid For This Rembrandt Painting

View All
Vogue Collection