I know this is a bit off topic but I take exception to this sweeping generalization of yours. I will not deny that in greater Japanese society woman have many sexist challenges to confront, but an investigation of the "traditional ways" in Japanese koryu culture will reveal the existence of women headmasters thru many years that have been held, and remain held in very high esteem.
To infer that aikido has adapted egalitarian ideals due to cultural realities outside Japan my be specifically true in some cases but it is not necessarily accurate in relation to the greater Japanese martial culture in the manner implied in your above statement.
Toby Threadgill / TSYR
I based my statement on the story of one of my teachers, who (among other issues) went to Japan to train with our dojo-cho a couple of years ago. At one dojo, she repeatedly had a man try to (physically, with his hands) force her to sit with her knees together during kokyu-ho - a less stable position than sitting with the base in a triangle.
I am glad to hear from you that such experiences are not representative.