Since debuting in 1997, WNBA games remain difficult to find on mainstream networks like ESPN, despite a growing interest in the league. And for those female basketball players, that deficiency also trickles down to apparel with a lack of options in the women’s performance gear category. Even Nike, quite possibly the biggest name in sports apparel (and definitely one of the first people think of) had yet to create a basketball collection created for female athletes in mind — until recently, that is.
Earlier this month, Nike Women unveiled its brand-new Elite Basketball performance collection, marking the very first time the activewear giant has engineered basketball clothing for women, designed by women. YES! Fantastic news, isn’t it?
“Insight from premier players Elena Delle Donne, Skylar Diggins, Chiney Ogwumike and Sue Bird, along with the UConn women’s basketball team, directly informed the fit and feel of the Nike Women’s Elite Basketball short and tank.
‘We did a lot of focus groups with both high school and professional basketball players from across the country to make sure we were creating the right styles and incorporating the wants and needs for the female athlete,’ confirms Chris Burke, Nike Basketball Global Basketball Apparel Director.”
While the collection itself is comprised of just four pieces, each item appears to be highly versatile for both practice and a competitive setting. There’s a loose-fitting, mesh-paneled hoodie, a pair of sweat-wicking, tapered pants, a contoured, non-restrictive tank and a pair of lightweight, breathable shorts.
Nike Women’s Elite Basketball collection is available now at Nike.com and select retailers.