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