"The Martial Athletics of Diana Watts"
A short essay on Diana Watts, who was probably the first female instructor of Japanese martial arts in the Western world. Of possible interest to members of this forum is her system of physical culture training, based on a combination of jujitsu and ancient Greek athletic exercises. She appears to have been convinced that jujitsu was literally descended from classical Greek standing wrestling.
Historical eccentricities aside, she was an interesting woman and quite a pioneer in her own way.
The essay includes a short "re-animation" of the lady in question performing some of her exercises, dating from the year 1914.
Why, exactly, have I never heard of this woman before? Was I under a fucking rock?
Precious few people have ever heard of Edith Garrud either, and she was at least as cool. She was a contemporary of Diana Watts', probably the first *professional* female martial arts instructor in the Western world, and she secretly trained the all-female "fighting Bodyguards" of the British Suffragette movement in jujutsu.
Maybe because of the same reason that lead to the authors name on her books beeing listed as "Mrs. Roger Watts". Just plain oldfashioned sexism.
Originally Posted by JKDChick
The New-York Times had a quite lengthy article on her in 1912:
Edit: in case direct linking to the pdf does not work, here is the abstract:
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