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Old 12-08-2011, 01:47 AM   #6
philipsmith
Dojo: Ren Shin Kan
Location: Birmingham
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 312
United Kingdom
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Re: On being Female in an Aikido Dojo

As a male instructor I don't think that in many dojos it's overt sexism.
Men and women are different (I'm glad to say) each with their strengths and weaknesses. The problem is usually, however, one of the male ego. many men feel threatened by a competent, assertive female. My own student a mother of two in her early 30's is often accused of being too strong or aggressive when we visit other dojos.
She's neither - just a good Aikidoka.
Interestingly she has started taking my class when I'm away and her biggest supporters are a 6' 3" ex-karateka and a 280lb ex body builder (both Aikido Sandan). When I got back from my last trip they both took great delight in telling me a) what good classes she'd taken and b) how a visiting Nidan had rather a shock when taking ukeme.

I guess what I'm saying is don't be too hard on us poor men. Some of us fell threatened by successful women showing up our weaknesses!
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