Sport in the Middle East

With all the controversial attention focused on the Middle East, we often forget that there is a burgeoning experimental art and fashion scene on the rise. The latest issue of Bidoun Magazine, a publication that was founded in 2004 to shine a light on culture and emerging talent in the Middle East, focuses it’s attention on another understated, and often neglected art form…Sports.

The issue lifts the veil on a wide range of sports-influenced topics — some serious, some a little more cheeky — including a piece on Mohammad Khordadian, the god-king of Persian dancercise, whose thirty-year career spans Tehran, Tehrangeles and Dubai. Shah Rukh Khan, the Muslim face of Bollywood cinema and owner of his own cricket team, the Kolkata Knight Riders. And Stephen Cherono, the Kenyan long- and middle-distance runner that has found infamy and fortune as an Arabized athlete in the Gulf.

Lets just say our interest was peaked by this recent issue, so we dug a little deeper and found performance Hijabs for Muslim women that must keep their head covered while playing sports. Designed by Elham Seyed Javad of Canadian based company ResportOn, “the hood’s unique design keeps all the hair away from the face. The hi-tech material, featuring micro-pores, dries extremely quickly, up to 14 times faster than cotton. Treated before fabrication, the fibers preserve their properties after multiple washings.”

The hoods are designed with comfort and style in mind, providing free range of movement, as well as temperature regulation. At the end of the day, it is incredibly interesting to see the women of this region participating in Sports. It is also another market to keep an eye on, in terms of expansion, as it evolves and broadens its active portfolio exponentially. – Jeanine Pesce


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