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In the cockpit into the boxing ring, these Girls defy stereotypes in Iran

For the previous five decades, Iranian photographer Mahya Rastegar has recorded Iranian girls that are powerful in their fields. Rastegar, who took up pictures in her late 20s following her divorce in 2009, says that she finds strength in documenting women’s life-affirming stories. These are a few of their tales.

Sadaf Khadem, 24, is the primary female stunt fighter to compete – and win-win globally. Back in April, she conquered French fighter Anne Chauvin in France.

Always interested in athletics, Khadem began playing basketball at age 9, but quickly developed a love of boxing as a teen. For decades, she practiced with friends in Tehran’s Taleghani Park and finally signed up to find out professionally in 2013.

Initially from Tehran, Khadem attended Azad University north of town and also holds a bachelor’s degree in sport technology.

Khadem says she needs young girls in Iran to have the ability to realize their objectives, whatever those might be, and thinks boxing will provide them both the bodily and the psychological strength to do so.

She coached with her trainer every Friday night in the fitness center in Varamin and trained women in Tehran that the remainder of the week, but she has not returned to her country as April.

Since these photos were shot in January 2017an an arrest warrant has been issued for exposing Iran’s strict dress code for female athletes. She had been in France to get a championship at the moment and remains there now.

She trains daily in a course in Tehran where she met her husband, and also a motocross rider, in 2016. They married just a couple of months later assembly and Jabbari says he’s had a massive effect in her career, being unwaveringly optimistic and attending each of her instruction. She sucks on his positive energy with helping her triumph.

Jabbari rode a bike for the first time together with her dad when she was 18 and practiced along with his motorcycle before locating a professional trainer and receiving her very own motorcycle. She says she enjoys the excitement and the adrenaline rush of this game.
Regardless of Iran’s patriarchal civilization, Dastjerdi managed to work her way to the male-dominated career in 2005, beginning first as a flight engineer and then as a pilot using Iran Air. She flies with Meraj Airlines.

After logging thousands of hours at the heavens, Dastjerdi sees the sex inequality within her profession firsthand, together with guys hired over girls over and over. If anything, she says, girls are more meticulous in their duties at the airport.

“I wished to become an actress because I was a young child,” states Azadeh Seifi, 30, who grew up in Mashhad, 450 miles east of the capital Tehran, where there were a couple of acting chances.

Seifi landed small roles in drama and on the little screen before the popular television show”Pardeh Neshin” place her on the map. Seifi played flashback scenes of the direct character Hoda, who returns to Iran to maintain her inheritance years later abandoning her daughter and going to Canada along with her teenaged love.
Parisa Mihan Doost, 33, is a tai chi coach along with the gold medalist in the 2019 Iranian National Tai Chi contest.

Doost was not always athletic. For many years, she states, she fought with her weight, and if she finished an unhappy relationship many years ago, she pledged to turn her life around. Over nine months and also with hundreds of hours in a fitness center, she lost nearly 100 pounds and finally began working as a coach.

N 2018, Doost turned into a Tai training coach, providing private lessons to students in Tehran. “Sports has given me calm and serenity, and it has made me a warrior girl,” she states.

Adele functions in primary schools in Isfahan instructing Farsi. Monthly, she visits nearby villages, teaching girls how to read and translate the Quran, in addition to tutoring kids in English.

Soudabeh Sabour, 55, is a professional copywriter, women’s bodybuilding trainer and a teacher in a bodyguard coaching organization.

Inspired by the need to independently take care of her son, 10 at the moment, she states she dug her way out of the melancholy through game, first using self-improvement courses and then with training and bodybuilding.
It’s frequently tricky for divorced women in Iran to locate work, and if they do, their connections with male colleagues particularly are strained due to the taboos throughout separation.

Sabour worked in graphic design but made to be a bodybuilding trainer after a few tough years – a determination that changed her, along with her son’s, lifestyle. She states she’s managed to educate him through illustration invaluable lessons about strength and independence.