According to AFP, sumo – known as traditional Japanese martial arts, which is only for men but today more and more Japanese women want and are determined to compete in this martial art.
Even women in Japan are not allowed to step on the ring for any reason. In 2003, Ms. Fusae Ohta, the mayor of Osaka City, once asked to go to the sumo ring to give the prize to the champion of a tournament. However, this wish of Ms. Ohta was denied outright.
However, under the struggle of many people, sumo in Japan is gradually developing in the female community, especially in schools. Sayaka Matsuo, a 19-year-old female sumo fighter, said she inherited her passion for sumo fighting from her father, a true sumo fighter.
AFP news agency quoted Matsuo: “I came to sumo as a hobby from a young age. I have been under a lot of pressure from my father and I look forward to one day winning the World Sumo Championship for Women. ” Weighing only 60kg, Matsuo must practice daily with people who weigh 2.5 times her (about 150kg).
Part of the reason why sumo is not allowed for Japanese women is because of the huge amount of food that every sumo fighter has to load, which is considered excessive for women. In addition, eating so much creates financial problems. Japanese women are not supported in sumo competitions, so they do not receive much financial support from their families and society.
Anna Fujita, a 21-year-old female sumo wrestler, said that her students did not have much money so they had to follow a poor quality diet than male sumo fighters.
But since the weight of less than 65kg has been set for women, quite a few women participate in sumo training and competitions. Hideto Tsushima of Nihon University (Japan) believes that in their teenage years, female sumo fighters are even stronger than their male counterparts. During a match at the University of Tokyo, a female sumo fighter knocked a male boxer twice his weight out of the ring.
Currently, sumo for women has not been officially recognized in Japan when the women’s tournament is only in the amateur framework. However, with the increasing number of female sumo clubs, the number of female sumo wrestlers in Japan will increase significantly in the future. Mr. Toshiaki Hirahara, coach of sumo club of the University of Tokyo, said that sumo needs to be open for women to be able to become an Olympic sport in the future.