Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Nike slammed for skimpy Team USA women’s track and field uniforms for 2024 Paris Olympics

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Nike is under fire after Team USA’s track and field uniforms for the 2024 Paris Games were revealed this week — and the skimpy, hip-baring getup for female competitors has some Olympians wondering if they’ll be flashing their genitals to the world this July.

The company has been accused of sexism since unveiling the kit at a Nike Air event in Paris on Thursday as critics questioned whether there was any input from female athletes, who would need to adhere to a complicated intimate grooming.

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“Wait, my hoo haa is gonna be out,” long jump hopeful Tara Davis-Woodhall, who participated in the 2020 Olympics, commented under Citius Mag’s post, which first posted reported on the reveal.

Lauren Fleshman, a retired US world champion runner, seethed in an Instagram post about the revealing outfits.

“I’m sorry, but show me one WNBA or NWSL team who would enthusiastically support this kit”, Fleshman wrote on Instagram.

Nike’s track and field Olympics uniforms have come under fire. Pic: fleshmanflyer/InstagramSource: Instagram

“This is for Olympic Track and Field. Professional athletes should be able to compete without dedicating brain space to constant pube vigilance or the mental gymnastics of having every vulnerable piece of your body on display.

“If this outfit was truly beneficial to physical performance, men would wear it. This is not an elite athletic kit for track and field. This is a costume born of patriarchal forces that are no longer welcome or needed to get eyes on women’s sports.

“I’m queer and I’m attracted to female bodies but I don’t expect or enjoy seeing female athletes or male athletes put in a position to battle self-consciousness at their place of work. This is not part of the job description.”

Lauren Fleshman has slammed Nike’s track and field Olympics uniforms. Pic: fleshmanflyer/InstagramSource: Instagram

Nike, however, defended its design, with Vice President of Apparel Innovation, Janett Nichol, telling CBS Sports that the uniforms “perform at the highest level” and insisted athletes were brought in to test them during the process.

“On the apparel side, why it’s a game-changer for us, is because we’ve now been able to take athlete insights, along with data, and use that algorithm to create something that allows us to get to a level of specificity, fidelity, and accuracy that we’ve never been able to do before,” Nichol said.

While still made from skin-tight spandex, the men’s outfit was much more conservative with mid-thigh length shorts and a full-coverage tank top.

The outfit appears to be a standard fit for men’s uniforms, but many don’t understand why Nike would leave their female athletes with so much skin showing.

US athlete Sha’Carri Richardson models a two-piece version of the Nike uniform in Paris, on April 11, 2024. (Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND / AFP)Source: AFP

“This is clearly a joke … I’m someone’s mom, I can’t be exposing myself in such ways. Where are the shorts?!” Paralympian Femita Ayanbeku fumed on Instagram.

“There’s no way a female runner had any say in that design,” another commenter wrote. “I hope USALF is paying for the bikini waxes.”

“If the labia are hanging out on a still mannequin, what do we expect to happen to a moving person?” another wondered.

A spokesperson for the USA track and field team told The Guardian that “athlete options and choices were the driving force for USATF in the planning process with Nike”.

Nike has also said it will make tailors available for the team ahead of the Olympics.

– This article first appeared in the New York Post and was republished with permission

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