At a time when all the disciplines formerly reserved for men are becoming more democratic, women are practicing more and more combat sports. At 36, Emilienne Kamdem Map is one of them. The one who practices judo for about twenty years has made a place for herself in the sun by becoming referee of the International Judo Federation.
The world of martial arts is much more attractive than the idea we have of it. In Cameroon, women are integrating more and more the ctegory and this is doing rather well. This is the case of emilienne Kamdem Map, the president of the club of women practicing martial arts. Her adventure in the world of judo began almost twenty years ago when she was a teenager.
Emilienne comes from a passionate family of combat sports. Her love for judo, she has it since her childhood. Yet she is the first in her family to opt for the discipline. She explains “If I had not been supported, I would have never succeeded”.
Black belt, third dan of judo since 2011, the judokate is also referee of the International Judo Federation. As such, it is often convened at national sporting events organized by the Cameroon Judo Federation, but also for international IFJ competitions.
“Being of the IFJ means knowing more than others”
Emilienne confesses to having a behavior moved for a long time. It was focused on the fight with a rather bellicose spirit and becoming an IFJ representative, it was imperative to adopt an exemplary attitude. Thanks to the principles taught by the martial arts, she has softened herself. “I am now the mirror of many women. In addition, being of the FIJ means knowing more than the others “.
When asked why fighting sports practitioners are known to be peaceful people, she replies that martial arts have their own codes. And you need to have passion to comply. “The moral code to respect is humility, self-control and friendship, which is the purest of human feelings.” When this code is put into practice, it becomes clear that the primary purpose of the discipline is to serve others.
By founding the club of practicing martial arts women, Emilienne feels useful. It all started with a game. She teamed up with Nanbudo professionals to bring together all the female combat sports practitioners. The fact that women are afraid to engage in these different disciplines has been their motivation. Today, being on the spotlight as a figurehead and example for others is a satisfaction for Emilienne Kamdem Map. The goal of the club she founded is to get as many women as possible to practice a martial art regardless of age or social status. For her, it is possible to be a businesswoman or stay-at-home mother while practicing judo, karate, nanbudo or kung fu.
Training for young people?
Beyond this club bringing together martial arts professionals and amateurs, Émilienne thinks of creating a school to train young people even if she recognizes that she does not yet have the financial means. Today her work resides mainly in raising awareness through marches and other events. And little by little, her actions spread to all regions of the country.
She is on the right track. Her club is taking off. The number of members increases a little more each day. And perhaps she will succeed in her bet: that of attracting women from all walks of life in the practice of martial arts, which are real energy drivers.