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Committee Chair writes to leading football boot brands over lack of women-specific designs

6 July 2023

The Women and Equalities Committee Chair Caroline Nokes MP has written to football boot brands, including Adidas and Nike, over the lack of boots specifically designed for women and girls.


The letters follow evidence to the Committee on the disproportionate impact of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) knee injuries among female footballers. Five of the world’s top 20 female footballers suffered ACL injuries in 2022. 

Football journalist Suzy Wrack told the Committee more research is needed into aspects of boot design that could contribute to injuries among women. 

The Committee asks major brands – Adidas, Nike, Puma and Umbro – for information on their approach to the design, manufacture and marketing of football boots and what research, if any, they are doing into women-specific design, including how this could prevent avoidable injuries. 

The Committee has also written to major sportswear retailer Sports Direct on its retailing of football boots, noting that product descriptions on its website and in-store do not appear to indicate whether they are designed specifically for women and in many cases are promoted as just ‘mens’ or ‘boys’. The Committee asks the retailer what it is doing to support women and girls wishing to play football.

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