Nike is the latest company to embrace inclusivity—and it’s not just doing so with models of color. It’s listening to the performance needs of some of the most underserved athletes and putting its product where their concerns are.
The Nike Pro Hijab won’t debut until 2018, but it has already been tested on numerous female Muslim athletes—from figure skater Zahra Lari to weightlifter Amna Al Haddad. “As each country has its own particular hijab style, the ideal design would need to accommodate variances,” Nike said in a statement. “The brand also solicited the opinions of advocates and local communities to ensure the design met cultural requirements.”
Nike said it’s been working on the idea for over a year. The current pull-on design features a stretchy, breathable mesh and will come in dark neutral colors as per the consulting athletes’ requests.
“By providing Muslim athletes with the most groundbreaking products, like the Nike Pro Hijab, Nike aims to serve today’s pioneers as well as inspire even more women and girls in the region who still face barriers and limited access to sport: Fewer than one in seven girls participate in locally recommended sport activities for 60 minutes or more,” Nike said.
In its strive for greater inclusivity, the brand also launched a plus-size line for women this week, with tops and bottoms ranging up to size 3XL and sports bras to 38E.