Zahra Lari - Arab Emirates Skater
I don´t know if there already is a thread about this young skater, Zahra Lari, but here is an article (in german) about the (first?) muslim figure skater, having the goal to compete at Pyeongchang in 2018.
And also a short reportage about her: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOVqh96PeQs
She has been skating for 6 years now, also competed internationally and now has the high goal to reach the Olympics. If she would be able to do so, she would be the first athlete from the United Arab Emirates to compete at the Winter Olympics.
There were some complainings about her skating with a headscarf, and she is also highly critisized by highly conservative muslims to show to much of her attraction even she is skating fully covered.
On facebook she was already critisized by some skating fans because of the political statement of supression transferred by the headscarf and that the ISU should act against that and also a unqualified statement: " Zur nächsten Olympiade, wie lächerlich. Mit dem Outfit kann sie bestenfalls zur arabischen Meisterschaft im Kameltreiben antreten." -> meaning so much as her aim was hilarious and with that outfit she could only compete at the arab championships in camel battue- This makes me angry as none of them had seen her skate and seem to think that the costume matters everything in a skating performance.
Even if I am not agreeing on women wearing headscarves I still recognize that this is something about the culture and the religion, which I highly tolerate and don´t think that she should be banned from competitions as she is not responsible for her cultural background. I kinda compare the possibility that she could be banned with a skater wearing a cross necklace while being on ice, which is also such a statement.
I highly admire her for fighting for her dreams, even while being confronted with very contradictory conditions.
What do you think about her aims? I hope we can discuss a bit about this topic, if the ISU should permit her to skate fully covered (as some people demand to not let her skate as this would be a political statement)
Thank you for sharing!
I don't think she's the first Muslim skater, as there are a few I can think of that have, to me (I'm a Muslim), Muslim-sounding names. But maybe the first to compete internationally while wearing the hijab?
Size 7 Knife Boots
Thank you. Brought a tear to my eye! I hope her dreams come true.
This was a great costume.
I didn't care so much for the newer one pictured in the article.
Landing 3As in my dreams!
She sounds like an amazingly courageous young woman. I hope she achieves everything she wants -- and then some!
I wonder if former U.S. men's competitor Armin Mahbanoozedah is Muslim? (His name means son of the moon goddess in Persian.)
Originally Posted by LRK
There was a U.S. brother and sister pairs team a number of years ago who were Arab-Americans (I don't know their religion.) I can't remember their names now (I think her first name was Simi ?) They made a big splash in winning the U.S. Novice title, but he aged out out and they didn't get past juniors. She coached at Michelle Kwan's rink for a while. Does anyone recall this this delightful young team?
Guessing Nadjma Mahamoud might be too (even if she competes for France). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xNSlAW7tHIs
In search of a summer sport to love <3
Wow, what a wonderful and dedicated young woman. I really hope she goes far, she certainly seems to have the work ethic. With her smile and determination, I barely even noticed her headscarf. In an ideal world it would be a non-topic.
I just needed to share this because of the negative commentary in the thread were I found this... I had to fight a lot of rage inside of me because of the intolerance of some people. It was shaming to read such comments from people from my country... :(
They did not even moved two fingers to look up her skating on youtube before they judged her for being who she is.
Okay, then not the first muslim skater, but she definetely seems to be the first one with full body cover - I also don´t see the arguments concerning the safety because of it. She probably already wore it when she started skating, so she is used to it.
I think it's a knee-jerk reaction for some.
Like you, I don't know why it would affect her safety? It seems to be bound very tight, so it's not like there's fluttering cloth that would get in the way of her line of sight.
It is, in fact, more than just a statement (like wearing a cross necklace would be for a Christian). It is a religious obligation.
Originally Posted by Carmen95
Landing 3As in my dreams!
I just watched a couple of videos of Zahra on YouTube. Aside from her talent, she's wonderfully charming and articulate, and has a very special kind of courage to follow her dream in the face of the kind of opposition she's getting from some quarters. There were some horrible comments posted re: the videos. Wish I hadn't read them; they made me feel so sad and angry that I got teary-eyed.
Good for you, Zahra -- you go, girl!
ISU, stop promoting 2-foot skating!
Some news about her: http://gulfnews.com/sport/other-spor...arts-1.1299998 (link courtesy of Sylvia from Unseen Skaters).
And it's very good news. Zsolt Kerekes is now working at Zayed Sports City. He used to work in the Netherlands and from what I have heard, he is a really good coach so fingers crossed that he's going to aid not only her development but also work on developing the next generation of UAE skaters.