A cap designed to guard Black swimmers’ hair has lastly acquired approval for use in aggressive races after it was banned from the Tokyo Olympics final 12 months.
On Friday (September 2), Soul Cap, the additional giant swim cap made to carry quite a lot of Black hairstyles, landed on the listing of authorized gear regulated by FINA, swimming’s governing physique, per AP Information.
“Selling range and inclusivity is on the coronary heart of FINA’s work,” govt director Brent Nowicki stated in a press release, “and it is extremely vital that every one aquatic athletes have entry to the suitable swimwear.”
The London-based swim cap was designed to be larger than others available on the market to include dreadlocks, weaves, hair extensions, braids, thick and curly hair, and different Black hair varieties.
The approval comes after British swimmer Alice Dearing was barred from sporting a Soul Cap within the 10-kilometer marathon swim in Tokyo final 12 months.
The general public outrage that ensued after FINA prompt that the scale of the cap may create a bonus for the swimmer led to an apology from the governing physique and a pledge to overview the choice for future races.
Now, greater than a 12 months after Soul Cap was banned from the Olympics, the corporate stated the approval marks a “large step in the proper route” for swimming, which has traditionally featured a small pool of Black athletes.
“For a very long time, standard swim caps have been an impediment for swimmers with thick, curly, or volume-blessed hair,” Soul Cap stated in a press release. “They will’t at all times discover a cap that matches their hair sort, and that usually implies that swimmers from some backgrounds find yourself avoiding competitions, or giving up the game fully.
“We’re excited to see the way forward for a sport that’s turning into extra inclusive for the following technology of younger swimmers.”
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