March is Women’s History Month, and perhaps no other sport gives women a platform for equality that martial arts does. It is not uncommon for the female stars of the sport to outshine their male counterparts and headline events. One of the faces of the striking arts is ONE Championship Atomweight Kickboxing and Interim Muay Thai World Champion Janet Todd.
Todd, who returns to action at ONE Fight Night 8 on Prime Video on Friday, March 24, against ONE Atomweight Muay Thai World Champion Allycia Hellen Rodrigues, hopes to use her position as one of the best on the planet to inspire the next generation of women in the sport. “JT” still wants to see the sport grow in its depth of talent and believes that the growing platform will help generate future interest. And she is the shining example of what they can accomplish if they put in the hard work.
“Because compared to the men, there’s not as many women competing. ONE Championship is a great platform, but I hope the sport continues to grow through some of these major promotions like ONE Championship. And, yeah, I hope people get inspired to compete. If I can do it, you can do it,” Todd told ONE.
According to Todd, one of the biggest ways to help grow martial arts is by making the sport accessible. The Southern California native applauds how ONE has been able to do just that with weekly free events across all of their social platforms and monthly events for free on Prime Video. As more and more fans discover her kickboxing and Muay Thai barnburners, more new faces will begin to take up the sport.
“I think ONE Championship, making the fights more accessible to people through watching it on YouTube or watching it on Amazon Prime, is helping grow the interest in the sport. I’m sure after people watch it, maybe not everyone’s like me, but they might want to start and see what it’s like. And maybe that’ll help the sport grow, too. So I think ONE Championship is making that more accessible to people by putting it on platforms where we can watch all these fights for free,” said Todd.
But Todd’s focus is not purely on ushering in the next generation of talent to compete inside the Circle. For the ONE superstar, it is about what martial arts can teach women regarding life itself. Todd discussed how martial arts gave her a new perspective on overcoming obstacles and never giving up.
“I think what martial arts, at least, has done for me is giving me confidence that I can take on challenges that I thought I couldn’t and find a way to get it done. And it’s not just in martial arts, but outside, in my work and everything else in life. I don’t let failures get me down, I just know I just have to try again, find a different way to do it. And it’s given me the confidence to be able to get back up and try again and be able to discover more of what I’m capable of, which has been really rewarding. So I hope that people who start martial arts gain that kind of experience too.”
ONE Fight Night 8 takes place at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Friday, March 24. The event is free for all U.S. and Canadian Amazon Prime subscribers. The action begins at 8 p.m. EST/5 p.m. PST.