I used to tie my hakama like the guys but found that it inhibits my breathing and - as my waistline is pretty high up - the knot was not where my center is. I could not wear it on my hips because due to the "conical" shape of my female body, it would slip upwards as soon as I started to move, and fall apart. So I have come up with a somewhat complicated way of tying my hakama, which involves leading the straps through in between the legs (it is known as the gi string way of tying the hakama in my dojo now
). I know it is nowhere even near tradion, but now IŽve got the knot in front of my centre, which is a much better feeling in practice, and it is not making breathing difficult any more.
My first sensei said that one day heŽll write a book called "1000 and one ways of tying a hakama"