Manal Rostom and other Nike Athletes inspire women from all walks of life to 'Dream Crazier'

Hiba Khan 1/07/2019
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Over the years, Nike has earned plaudits for speaking out about social welfare issues and has actively worked to become the harbinger of inclusivity and diversity in sport.

This is exactly what their campaign ‘Dream Crazy’ is all about, celebrating people with big dreams in sport who were often dismissed for being too crazy.

With campaigns like these, Nike has been trying to break barriers and make sure no person is held back or looked down upon for pursuing the impossible.

The sporting giant took a significant leap when they announced the release of a performance Hijab (headcover) as a way to allow more Muslim women to participate in sport and finally put an end to the debate about the safety of this religious item of clothing.

The brand forever revolutionised sport for Muslim women and as the face of Nike hijab and Dream Crazier campaign, Manal Rostom says the brand has helped young Muslim girls become more comfortable with their identity.

“Big brands did not give us the space to be represented and did not inspire me as a young Arab girl, who was growing up as a third culture kid in a western environment, to fully understand my culture,” said Rostom.

“I think what they are doing now is normalizing various aspects of our culture and giving girls from different cultures role models to follow so they have someone to relate to and basically just dream crazy and I am so thankful to Nike for creating this platform.”

Nike has sponsored numerous athletes from all cultures and backgrounds, and helped them into bringing their dreams to fruition. Two such athletes are twin sisters, Amira and Aisha Zailani, who currently play for Dubai-based amateur football team Leoni FC.

“Nike has helped us in so many ways,” said 22-year-old Amira, “Not only do they provide us with equipment and tools to make it easier to train, but they also inspire us every day to continue to do what we love and follow our dreams.”

The Zailani sisters are grateful to Nike who have provided them with a platform to use their voice to show that sport should not be restricted to just one gender, insisting the ‘future is female’.

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Caster Semenya experiences victorious return to Diamond League after gender row

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Caster Semenya marked her return to Diamond League action with victory in the 800 metres at the Prefontaine Classic.

The South African athlete, who had missed the previous two races as a result of the IAAF’s controversial female eligibility rules, led the field home at Stanford in 1.55.70, beating her own meeting record in the process.

She finished 0.66 seconds ahead of Ajee Wilson with Raevyn Rogers in third, both Americans recording season-best times.

Semenya was free to run after launching an appeal with the Swiss Federal Court against the IAAF’s differences of sex development regulations following defeat in her challenge at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Under the rules, the double Olympic and three-time World 800 metres champion would be forced to take medication to suppress her high level of testosterone.

Copy provided by Press Association Sport

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Vienna to host Eliud Kipchoge’s bid to break two-hour marathon barrier

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Eliud Kipchoge will attempt to break the two-hour barrier for the marathon in the INEOS 1:59 Challenge in Vienna on October 12, it has been announced.

The Austrian capital has been chosen to host the event, which will see Kenyan world record holder Kipchoge make his second bid to run the first sub-two-hour marathon.

“After an extensive worldwide assessment process, The Prater – the famous Viennese park – has been chosen by the INEOS 1:59 Challenge as the venue that will give Kipchoge the optimum conditions to write himself into the history books,” INEOS said.

Kipchoge ran the marathon in a time of two hours and 25 seconds on the Monza race track in Italy in his previous attempt to break the two-hour mark. He was assisted by pacemakers who ran set sections of the course on that occasion, meaning it was not recognised as a world record.

The 34-year-old 2016 Olympic gold medal winner set the current world record in Berlin last September when running 2:01:39, beating the previous best by 78 seconds.

He also ran the second-fastest time in history when completing the London marathon in April in a time of 2:02:37.

INEOS chairman Sir Jim Ratcliffe said: “Eliud Kipchoge is the greatest ever marathon runner and the only athlete in the world who has any chance of beating the two-hour time.

“Nobody’s been able to achieve this. It’s not unlike trying to put a man on the moon.”

Kipchoge added: “I’ve been informed Vienna has a fast and flat course, nicely protected by trees.

“The course is as well situated in the heart of this beautiful city, which will enable a great number of spectators to be part of this historical event.”

Provided by Press Association Sport 

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