A massive split is taking place within the ranks of Australian outlaw motorcycle gangs with ‘fashion conscious’ new recruits caring more about their ‘gangster image’ than actually riding motorbikes.
Younger members who are increasingly being plucked out of prison yards, have ditched the beer gut and leather look for designer clothes, flashy jewellery and Instagram followers.
But older ‘one-per-centers’ are growing frustrated with the new breed of ‘Nike bikies’ and ‘plastic gangsters’ who have flooded their clubs in recent years.
What is a Nike Bikie?
While ‘old school’ bikies were drawn to the freedoms and thrills of a life outside of society’s laws, norms and values, the new breed of Nike bikies sees things differently.
Younger members are infatuated with material items like luxury clothing, flashy jewellery and social media – and as the name suggests often wear sneakers rather than leather riding boots.
‘Your classic 1970s and 1980s bikies have beer guts, beards, long hair, worn out denim and leather,’ One of Australia’s leading outlaw motorcycle experts Professor Mark Lauchs told Daily Mail Australia.
‘The Nike bikies are a lot more fashion conscious. Extremely fashion conscious. They would never be seen dressing like an old bikie.
‘They do steroids, they get extreme tattoos and they’ve got gold chains, designer clothes and funky hair cuts.’
Prof Lauchs believes the trend emerged from Western Sydney gym culture – with many new bikies interested in body building and steroids.
The term was first coined to describe the Western Sydney street gang Notorious in 2007.
It is a uniquely Australian phenomenon.
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