Women in Aikido
Updated: Nov 19, 2022
It was often thought that martial arts were only practiced by men however History tells us something quite different.
The first famous woman, that comes to my mind, is Joan D’Arc (1412-1431) a defender of the French nation and then when we travel to the East, we find many famous female warriors who fought in many battles.
Between the 12th and 19th century, in Japan, many women fought in battle or they fought to preserve their domain. They had to learn martial arts to survive.
One of the most famous female warrior is: Tomoe Gozen who fought during the Gempai war (1180-1185). She was skilled in swordsmanship, archery and she was an agile horseback rider. She has been an inspiration for many artists, writers and poets for centuries.
In Japan, those female warriors were called Onna-musha(女武者) or Onna-bugeisha in pre-modern Japan. They were members of the bushi (warrior) class.
Today, women make up about 15% of the French military and the US military.
In some countries such as Germany, some are enlisted in combat units. I am sure that the percentage will increase overtime.
Aikido is a non-competitive martial that develops self-confidence, mental and physical strength. The founder of Aikido was a well-known martial artist. He challenged and he defeated many martial artists, demonstrating the efficacity of Aikido.
The efficacity of Aikido is not based on muscle power, it is based on skills and determination to study the way.
In the world of Aikido, we have many professional female aikidokas such as Micheline Tissier, Yoko Okamoto and Helene Doué...
They are an inspiration to all of us.
Aikido is available for everyone but it is up to people to make the first step to start this unique journey.