The debate about the hijab (headscarf) and what place it has in the athletic arena for Muslim female athletes is a fairly new one, and one that the International Sports Federations (IF) have been forced to address in recent years as more young Muslim women around the world choose to participate in athletics. Yet, with that increase also comes controversy as sports governing bodies are forced to evaluate their own rules in order to determine if wearing a hijab is acceptable in their game, and how they, as an international governing body, can find a middle ground that both respects the rules of the game while also respecting the player's right to cover.

The article highlights a recent decision made by football's international governing body, International Federation of Association Football (FIFA), to ban an Iranian girls' youth national soccer team from an international tournament and analyzes the broader policy implications of that decision, with the intention of providing a constructive method of approach toward resolving future decisions should the need arise, as it seems, it inevitably will.


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pp. 43-50
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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