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Old 02-11-2009, 08:08 PM   #1
antonis paps
 
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High Ranking Women

Why aren't any women ranked above 6th Dan?

Τὰ πάντα ῥεῖ , What Flows, Is.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:31 PM   #2
Bob Blackburn
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Re: High Ranking Women

There are women above 6th dan. Not many people above 6th. Here is one in Philly.
http://www.philadelphia-aikido.com/Site/About_Us_.html

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Old 02-11-2009, 08:36 PM   #3
Garth Jones
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Re: High Ranking Women

Why aren't women paid as much as men for the same jobs? Why can't women get into corporate boardrooms and high political office? Sexism. Of the top of my head, I can think of several western female aikidoists, one in particular, who have have been training as long and contributed as much to the art as the men who are being promoted to 7th dan, and yet.....

Garth

PS The question is applicable to aikikai aikido as far as I am aware.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:44 PM   #4
Chris Farnham
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Re: High Ranking Women

There actually are a coulple 7th dan women in the States now. Check this thread:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=15652

Also, Chiba sensei has about four women who are 6th dan shihan in his Birankai organization, and all of his highest ranking instructors are 6th dan, so that probably has more to do with how Chiba Shihan reccomends his higher ranking students for promotions than the fact that they are women.

Although I do see your point though. Aikikai Hombu dojo for instance, has no women instructors that I know of.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:50 PM   #5
antonis paps
 
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Bob Blackburn wrote: View Post
There are women above 6th dan. Not many people above 6th. Here is one in Philly.
http://www.philadelphia-aikido.com/Site/About_Us_.html
No there are enough people above 6th Dan.
In Aikikai I haven't found any single one.
I am thinking there might be a small racist issue here.

Τὰ πάντα ῥεῖ , What Flows, Is.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:51 PM   #6
ramenboy
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Chris Farnham wrote: View Post
There actually are a coulple 7th dan women in the States now. Check this thread:
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=15652

Also, Chiba sensei has about four women who are 6th dan shihan in his Birankai organization, and all of his highest ranking instructors are 6th dan, so that probably has more to do with how Chiba Shihan reccomends his higher ranking students for promotions than the fact that they are women.

Although I do see your point though. Aikikai Hombu dojo for instance, has no women instructors that I know of.
+1...chiba sensei has a few women shihan now. lorraine dianne sensei and kristina varjan, sensei are two i can think of.

and actually, mariko takamizo, shihan, 6th dan, is on the instructor staff at hombu
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:54 PM   #7
giriasis
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Re: High Ranking Women

Jane Ozeki of the United States Aikido Federation was recently promoted to 7th dan. She's a woman and she's aikikai. Our federation also has quite a few female 6th dans. Check out the AikiWiki.

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
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Old 02-11-2009, 08:57 PM   #8
giriasis
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Re: High Ranking Women

Ummm...I thought I just posted.

Jane Ozeki of the United States Aikido Federation was recently promoted to 7th dan. Here's the AikiWiki link: http://www.aikiweb.com/wiki/Highrankingwomen

Anne Marie Giri
Women in Aikido: a place where us gals can come together and chat about aikido.
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Old 02-11-2009, 09:07 PM   #9
antonis paps
 
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Re: High Ranking Women

Thank you for the link.
There are ~3.
Its like 30 to 1

Τὰ πάντα ῥεῖ , What Flows, Is.
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Old 02-11-2009, 09:14 PM   #10
crbateman
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Re: High Ranking Women

This is not an Aikido problem, but a societal one. Japan has a long-standing history of gender bias in their culture, although they are certainly not alone in this. And old habits die hard.
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Old 02-12-2009, 06:43 AM   #11
lbb
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Re: High Ranking Women

Japan has a long-standing history of gender bias? Look in the mirror. Sexism is alive and well in every country I know.
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Old 02-12-2009, 07:22 AM   #12
Millerwc
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Re: High Ranking Women

I won't say that sexism isn't happening in the promotion system, that will vary greatly dojo to dojo, but I'll also throw out there that men tend to be more interested than women in learning any martial art, aikido included (at least in my observation). I've been with a university club for almost 6 years now, and we just have more guys walk in the door.

Last edited by Millerwc : 02-12-2009 at 07:25 AM.
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Old 02-12-2009, 07:59 AM   #13
crbateman
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
Japan has a long-standing history of gender bias? Look in the mirror. Sexism is alive and well in every country I know.
I don't think I need to look in the mirror, Mary. I have no such bias, and I also know Japan is not unique in this thinking, which is why I stated as much in my post. The reason I made the post is to broaden the indictment and state that the ranking bias opined in the original post is not particular to Aikido or the martial arts in general, but probably has much to do with that portion of Japanese (and other) tradition and culture where females have been diminished.
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:41 AM   #14
ramenboy
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Anne Marie Giri wrote: View Post
Ummm...I thought I just posted.

Jane Ozeki of the United States Aikido Federation was recently promoted to 7th dan. Here's the AikiWiki link: http://www.aikiweb.com/wiki/Highrankingwomen
i took ukemi for her during last year's seminar in iowa. it was great. then again, what would we expect from a high ranking woman!

congratulations, sensei
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:56 AM   #15
lbb
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Clark Bateman wrote: View Post
I don't think I need to look in the mirror, Mary. I have no such bias, and I also know Japan is not unique in this thinking, which is why I stated as much in my post. The reason I made the post is to broaden the indictment and state that the ranking bias opined in the original post is not particular to Aikido or the martial arts in general, but probably has much to do with that portion of Japanese (and other) tradition and culture where females have been diminished.
I wasn't talking about your personally, Clark -- my point is that societies other than Japan have plenty of sexism, and it plays out in the martial arts as much as anywhere else. We do have this fiction in the United States that discrimination is a thing of the past, that there may be inequities of status today as a result of that history, but that there is no more inequity of opportunity. Belief in this fiction prevents solving the problem.
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:55 AM   #16
crbateman
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
...and it plays out in the martial arts as much as anywhere else.
Yes, but not more so, because the problem is cultural, not intrinsic to MA's. But I think it's interesting to note that there indeed seems to be much less resistance to female MA rankings in the Occident than in the Orient... Perhaps there's hope for us yet (although the "homies" are still in the East, so the "glass ceiling" may never be totally shattered). I have had the opportunity to discuss the subject with a few native Japanese, Korean and Filipino women, and the general consensus among them is that MA's for women are more accessible there than they used to be, but still largely considered somewhat "eccentric" or even unseemly, even by the women themselves. I am told that a somewhat more liberal attitude exists in China, but I have not personally discussed this with any females of that heritage.
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Old 02-12-2009, 11:04 AM   #17
antonis paps
 
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Clark Bateman wrote: View Post
But I think it's interesting to note that there indeed seems to be much less resistance to female MA rankings in the Occident than in the Orient...
(although the "homies" are still in the East, so the "glass ceiling" may never be totally shattered).
Very good observation, I believe that is the case also also.
Not that this takes away our own social responsibilities.

P.S: I haven't met any high ranking women where I live,
but I know that I have a shodan friend of mine that I like very much working with.It's like women take away the whole concept of overpowering you, which I find very interesting.

Please excuse my english, by the way.
I am starting to feel I am making to much mistakes to be understood.

Thanks,

Antonis Paps.

Τὰ πάντα ῥεῖ , What Flows, Is.
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Old 02-12-2009, 11:14 AM   #18
Ron Tisdale
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Re: High Ranking Women

No worries...I understood you just fine!

Much better than you would understand my Greek!

Best,
Ron

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Old 02-12-2009, 12:44 PM   #19
Trish Greene
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Re: High Ranking Women

Better that they think I am a helpless young woman then a killer in disguise! Bwahahahahah!

Sorry had to be a bit silly there...

I'll post a serious thought about this subject in a minute.. :-)

"Aikido is nothing but an expression of the spirit of Love for all living things."

Morihei Ueshiba
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Old 02-14-2009, 05:21 AM   #20
Norton
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Re: High Ranking Women

One of the instructors at our dojo is a 3rd Dan woman, and she's quite brutal at her techniques. Just as the other instructors.Or even more.
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Old 02-14-2009, 12:09 PM   #21
giriasis
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Antonis Paps wrote: View Post
Thank you for the link.
There are ~3.
Its like 30 to 1
Your welcome Antonis. My Step-Father is from Greece. He grew up on Crete.

Yes, the disparity is high at the higher levels, but it is starting to even out at 6th dan and below.

I agree that by the nature of it being a martial art less women walk into in the dojo in the first place because of our cultural norms and gender expectations and biases.

I think it would better to compare the percentage of the number women who are high ranking against the percentage of men who are high ranking.

If you want to compare the number of women against the number of men who are high ranking (let's say 7th dan is high ranking). First I would separate out the different organizations because each organization has different promotion rules. Since Sensei Ozeki is part of the United States Aikido Federation (USAF), lets look at who's highest ranking there.

The USAF only has 11 men who are 7th dans and one woman for a total of 12 7th dans. That's a ratio of 1:12 or ~8%. 5 of that 11 were promoted during Kagami Baranki celebration and Sensei Ozeki was a part of that group (1:5 or 20%). The other 6 were only promoted 3-5 years ago. So it's not like we've had 7th dans (other than our Japanse Shihan who started the Federation) for a long time and then all of a sudden a women gets promoted. It's that we haven't even had 7th dans for a long time and a woman is a part of a group getting promoted.

(P.S. I can cook you a pretty good Spanikopita!)

Anne Marie Giri
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Old 02-14-2009, 07:18 PM   #22
nekobaka
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Re: High Ranking Women

I agree that there are very few 7th dans to begin with. We also have to think about how long it takes to become 7th dan. Most people are around 60 aren't they? They practice from their teens or twenties for 30-40 years right? unfortunately we will have to wait a bit longer for the numbers to even out. It will happen, it doesn't necessarily mean the promotion system is unfair, just society that makes it possible for people to devote their lives to aikido.
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Old 02-14-2009, 08:31 PM   #23
aikidoc
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Re: High Ranking Women

Chris:

Mariko Takamizo, shihan is a hombu instructor. i believe this is a female (I know there is one shihan female on staff).
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Old 02-14-2009, 08:37 PM   #24
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: High Ranking Women

Quote:
Antonis Paps wrote: View Post
Why aren't any women ranked above 6th Dan?
Jane Ozeki received her 7th dan in this year's kagami biraki honours.

P A Goldsbury
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Old 02-15-2009, 08:17 AM   #25
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Re: High Ranking Women

whats the requirements for sixth dan and above?

Northern Virginia Tenshinkai Aikido
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