LOS ANGELES – Ibtihaj Muhammad, the first ever female American Muslim fencer in the world, has been named the world’s best female fencer, adding more pride to her family and country, Mvslim.com reported.
“When most people picture an Olympic fencer, they probably do not imagine a person like me,” Muhammad is quoted by the USA Fencing website.
“Fortunately, I am not most people. I have always believed that with hard work, dedication, and perseverance, I could one day walk with my US teammates into Olympic history.”
Muhammad’s fencing days started when she was only 13 when her mother drove past a school and saw athletes training in full body covering gear.
The uniform which they wear for fencing basically inspired her, seeing it as allowing her girl to be an athlete in hijab.
“Because they were fully covered, my mom suggested that I should try it out when got to high school. As a Muslim female, the sport was uniquely accommodating. My religion requires that my body be fully covered and fencing did just that,” Muhammad added.
Today she is the world’s 10th swords woman, and is America’s first Muslim Fencer in the world.
To make her parents and all of us proud she was also named the world’s best female fencer, Mvslim.com said.
Muhammad is training for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro where she could become the first Muslim US woman to compete at the Olympic Games in a hijab.
Muhammad says that fencing has taught her “how to aspire higher, sacrifice, work hard and overcome defeat. 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.”