Fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad Will Be The First U.S. Olympian To Compete Wearing A Hijab
The 2016 Olympics will bear witness to history as fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad will become the first U.S. athlete to compete wearing a traditional muslim hijab over her head.
According to the HuffingtonPost, Ibtihaj won the bronze medal in the Women’s Sabre World Cup and earn the right to compete as a representative of the United States during the world games in Rio next year.
“When most people picture an Olympic fencer, they probably do not imagine a person like me. Fortunately, I am not most people,” the 30-year-old explains in her USA Fencing bio. “I have always believed that with hard work, dedication, and perseverance, I could one day walk with my U.S. teammates into Olympic history.”
“I want to compete in the Olympics for the United States to prove that nothing should hinder anyone from reaching their goals — not race, religion or gender. I want to set an example that anything is possible with perseverance.”
While fencing might not be something that most kids pick up as a hobby, Ibtihaj has been wielding a saber since she was 13 years old at her high school in New Jersey and subsequently took her talents to Duke University.
“After I graduated from college, I saw there was a lack of minorities in the sport,” Muhammad said in an interview with TeamUSA.org. “I recognized that I had a skill set, so I started to pursue fencing full time. I felt that it was something the squad needed. There were barriers that needed to be broken in women’s saber.”
We’d love to see Ibtihaj “accidentally” stab Donald Trump with one of her sabers.
Flip the page a few times to see more photos of this accomplished black athlete
Image via Instagram
ALF MABROUK to my booboo Faizah on her Katb el-Kitab! I'm thankful for every moment we have together and blessed to be able to call you both a sister and best friend. I pray that you guys are blessed with a marriage full of love and happiness. Welcome to the family Adam! ❤️🎉👰🏽 #alhumdulillah #mashallah #kitab #HFupclose
We won bronze this week at the 2015 Fencing World Championships in Moscow, Russia! I'm so happy we were able to end the season with a medal. This year marks our fifth straight appearance on the podium at world championships, capturing four bronze medals (2011- 2013 & 2015) and one GOLD (2014)! I am so appreciative of every moment! Alhumdulillah for everything!! 🇺🇸🏆 👏 #TeamUSA #squad #Moscow2015 #alhumdulillah #mashallah #blessed #ibtihajneverstops
For those closest to me, they can attest to how hard I've been working to balance my two careers: athlete and small business owner. Strange enough, many things that have helped me become a successful athlete, like the desire to be the best, the willingness to work for it and the ability to think tactically, have also helped me as a business owner. Similar to the athletic world, there is a lot of pushing and shoving in the fashion industry to get ahead. As an athlete, I don't concern myself with what others are doing (or not doing), because those things do not effect me. The same holds true for me in business. In order to be successful, I believe you have to be so focused on your own goals that you're willing to do everything physically possible to see your dreams come true. Anything can be yours, if you're willing to work hard enough. Here's to everyone out there who's working hard to become a better version of themselves every day! #mashallah #alhumdulillahforeverything #HardWorkPaysOff