Thursday, May 10, 2012

Muslimahs in Sports: An Article

Salaam alaikum wa rahmat Allah wa barakatuh everyone!  Insh'Allah you're all well and in the best of health and the highest of iman.  I came across this article on Muslim women participating in athletics, specifically competing in the Olympics.  Read it HERE.

The article brought up a very interesting topic...veiled athletes vs. non-veiled athletes.  I personally think that it's a shame, though it's not very surprising, that people/the media are so focused on what women are wearing and their physical appearance rather than their athletic accomplishments.  I find it sad that clerics in Algeria called Hassiba Boulmerka "anti-Islam", and that she received death threats simply because she chose to compete in a traditional track suit (yes, it's not exactly good hijab for a woman...or even a MAN for that matter, to wear track shorts...but sheesh, that doesn't automatically mean that she's not Muslim, or that she's AGAINST Islam, subhan'Allah...although I myself wear large headscarves and abayas, I'm so sick and tired of people making assumptions like this about sisters who chose not to cover *rant*).  I also find it sad that the American fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad probably gets far more questions about wearing the hijab than she does about her training regimen, etc.

On another note...I'm thrilled that at each Olympics there are increasing numbers of veiled Muslimah athletes...I really think they should serve as an inspiration for all of us Muslimahs to be active and take care of the bodies that Allah(swt) gave us.  There is a lot of cultural (notice I said CULTURAL, not religious) pressure for Muslim women not to participate in sports or an active lifestyle as it's not "modest" for us to do so.  This kind of attitude only hurts Muslim women, because it severely limits us with what we can do in order to keep our bodies healthy.  I personally do not see why there is any reason why a veiled Muslimah cannot participate in sports while still maintaining her modesty.  What do you think?