“An immense, gargantuan, vast. She heaves with fat. She is, in every measure, obese, and she is not readying herself for a run in her shiny Nike gear. She cannot run. She is, more likely, pre-diabetic and on her way to a hip replacement.”
These were the words British journalist Tanya Gold used in an article for The Telegraph this week to cut down the significance of a plus size female mannequin taking up space in Nike’s London store.
The mannequin stands on a podium wearing a pair of black full length Nike tights and a matching crop top, her arms raised above her head as if she’s stretching before taking off.
She's not in the back corner of the store or in her own little plus size section, but front and centre with the other mannequins that represent the many different women who wear Nike.
When the first images of the mannequin, whose name is Avril, first appeared on social media, we cheered and gave Nike a virtual high five for having the guts to back themselves and a demographic of their paying customers by representing them in their store.
After all, if they make tights in a larger size, why not show us what that size looks like on?
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I thought I'd go and visit the babe responsible for thousands of fatphobes on the internet losing their shit this week. Apparently a fitness brand using mannequins above a UK size 8 is the most outrageously offensive thing that's ever happened! Or to quote some of the comments I've seen - "dangerous", "disgusting", and "promoting death". Imagine my surprise when I entered @nikelondon and the mannequin did not, in fact, try to kill me! We actually got along great and fully rocked this impromptu photoshoot. • And do you know what I noticed during my death defying encounter with a plus size piece of plastic? People of all shapes and sizes were in the store. Some bigger than the mannequin, some smaller, and every single one deserves to see themselves represented and be catered for. Regardless of their fitness level. Whether they work out or not. Whatever fatphobic wankers want to say about who can and cannot wear a pair of fucking leggings. Every one of us is worthy of being represented, celebrated, and seen. This is a very small step in the right direction, and the reaction to it has shown exactly how necessary it is. • P.s. the mannequin is called Avril and she would like to remind you to drink some water and say something nice to yourself today. ????????????????☀️ • [image description: Megan is standing in a Nike store next to a plus size mannequin in black sportswear. She's wearing a white crop top, pastel patterned trousers and pink trainers while smiling and leaning on the mannequin as if they're besties] #bodypositivity #bodypositive #bodyconfidence #justdoit #nike #allbodiesaregoodbodies #fitnessmodel #plusisequal #bodyposi