At Newcastle's Goju-Ryu Karate Academy, female students have reported feeling uncomfortable in their all-white uniforms. In response, Sensei Aaron Milan-Vega has suggested that they be allowed to wear black uniforms instead. This idea was proposed by teenage black belt student Sylvie Gatherar, who believes that the all-white dress code can be a source of anxiety for female students, especially during menstruation.
Milan-Vega has expressed support for this idea and has offered the possibility of wearing dark trousers with the usual white karate tops. The academy, which is based in the North East of England in the UK, is attempting to make the sport more welcoming to women and currently has four female black belts. This issue was also addressed at Wimbledon in 2022 when the tournament dropped its strict all-white dress code to accommodate female players' concerns.