Female muaythai has become in many countries, as popular as its male counterpart. On the fitness and self-defense segment, we can easily say it is now more popular amongst women than men. IFMA has followed a strict gender equality development policy, and in the muaythai family, discrimination of any kind has no place.
Over the years, IFMA has developed and monitored participation in countries where women are socially limited. Close alliances with organisations such as UNWomen have been formed, as IFMA believes that collaboration and using resources and knowledge shared by others can only be beneficial towards achieving its development goals.
IFMA is proud that countries like Afghanistan and Iran for example now send full female teams, athletes as well as officials, to the IFMA international events. Also showcasing the trust and respect IFMA has in these respective countries.
In Thailand, the motherland of the sport for years female muaythai was taboo, IFMA honorary President General Chetta Thanajaro stated he remembers back to 1995 when Rangsit stadium under the sanctioning of WMC and IFMA organised the first stadium fights where women fought in the same arena and ring as the men, which at the time ignited on a lot of opposition. Today, and thanks to the efforts of the world body, all leading promoters promote women’s muaythai equally to the men’s.
Former World Champion and now IFMA Vice President Sue Glassey said “As a former fighter, I understand the difficulties female fighters faced 2 decades ago. Today, there is no more difference. Two of the five Continental President of the IFMA are women and 35% of the executive committee are women. This is our time, and IFMA will continue as a family to stand together for non-discrimination and gender equality.”