Firstly, a big thank you to all who attended the International Female Commission’s annual meeting in Russia. A very successful workshop with many National Federations attending. Our meeting covered many areas of concern ranging from safety equipment to media coverage, social networking, and promoting the inclusion of all females world-wide with the ongoing adjustments to the female competition uniform.
The main objectives for the Female Commission in the upcoming 18 months include: the active growth of our junior female participants across the world, the launch of a traveling Female International Trainer pilot scheme, the continued improvement and adjustment of the design and safety of the female protective equipment, increase the media coverage of female Muaythai at the 2014 IFMA World Championships in Langkawi, Malaysia as well as other national and international championships around the world and striving to implement the first Female World Championships.
We are celebrating the global success of female participation and are determined to go from strength to strength. In the year 2000 I attended my first IFMA World Championships in Bangkok, Thailand. That year the female participants numbered approximately 20. By 2002 the number of female participants had risen to 35. In 2012 at the recent IFMA World Championships in Russia the female participants reached an incredible 115 athletes and an outstanding number of female judges, referees, trainers and even presidents. Nowadays, it is not uncommon to see female teams reaching up to 20 participants per country; filling every female weight division in both A division and junior girls. It is inspiring and heartwarming to see such growth in female participation in our sport. I am proud of all we have achieved over the last decade and look forward to working with the devoted and proactive group of women that are forging the way for many generations of Muaythai enthusiasts to follow.
Once again, thank you to you all for your hard work and support. It would be remiss of me if I didn’t highlight 4 women in particular who are leading by example from far reaching corners of our global community. Luanda Smith from Mexico, Julie Malene Witt from Denmark, Teslime Çelik from Turkey, and Victoria Nansen from New Zealand.