Edition:
United Kingdom
Pictures | Fri Mar 6, 2020 | 6:40pm GMT

Pakistan's only woman boxing coach

Shahnaz Kamal Khan (L) coaches a student during a training session at the stadium in Peshawar, Pakistan December 20, 2019. Kamal is the first and only international female boxing coach registered with the boxing federation of Pakistan, in a male-dominated sport and a conservative country. That hasn't stopped the Peshawar-born woman from making her mark -- she's doing her best to nurture a younger generation of boxers.

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan (L) coaches a student during a training session at the stadium in Peshawar, Pakistan December 20, 2019. Kamal is the first and only international female boxing coach registered with the boxing federation of Pakistan, in a...more

Shahnaz Kamal Khan (L) coaches a student during a training session at the stadium in Peshawar, Pakistan December 20, 2019. Kamal is the first and only international female boxing coach registered with the boxing federation of Pakistan, in a male-dominated sport and a conservative country. That hasn't stopped the Peshawar-born woman from making her mark -- she's doing her best to nurture a younger generation of boxers. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
1 / 10
Shahnaz Kamal Khan gestures as she instructs students during a training session. "I had to face a lot of opposition from many directions," Kamal said. "My family, and my in-laws all opposed me, all relatives also objected. No one supported me except my husband. But when I attained a certain position and became a national and then an international coach, then everyone started lauding me. Before that I had to face a lot of difficulties, everywhere. I even had to leave my village."

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan gestures as she instructs students during a training session. "I had to face a lot of opposition from many directions," Kamal said. "My family, and my in-laws all opposed me, all relatives also objected. No one supported me except...more

Shahnaz Kamal Khan gestures as she instructs students during a training session. "I had to face a lot of opposition from many directions," Kamal said. "My family, and my in-laws all opposed me, all relatives also objected. No one supported me except my husband. But when I attained a certain position and became a national and then an international coach, then everyone started lauding me. Before that I had to face a lot of difficulties, everywhere. I even had to leave my village." REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
2 / 10
Shahnaz Kamal Khan speaks during an interview with Reuters in Peshawar. Growing up in a family of boxers, Kamal spent her childhood secretly yearning to put on gloves. She didn't think she would be able to realize her dream until she married a boxer.

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan speaks during an interview with Reuters in Peshawar. Growing up in a family of boxers, Kamal spent her childhood secretly yearning to put on gloves. She didn't think she would be able to realize her dream until she married a...more

Shahnaz Kamal Khan speaks during an interview with Reuters in Peshawar. Growing up in a family of boxers, Kamal spent her childhood secretly yearning to put on gloves. She didn't think she would be able to realize her dream until she married a boxer. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
3 / 10
Shahnaz Kamal Khan's shields and badges are seen at her home in Peshawar. When her husband Syed Kamal Khan discovered her interest, he started coaching her, breaking with social norms of Pathans -- the ethnic group they belong to. "My daughter was born and I thought, 'If there is no one else, I will make my daughter a boxer,'" he said. "But then there had to be a female coach for my daughter. So for this purpose, I tore right through the Pathan culture and brought my wife into boxing. I have no objection to that at all."

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan's shields and badges are seen at her home in Peshawar. When her husband Syed Kamal Khan discovered her interest, he started coaching her, breaking with social norms of Pathans -- the ethnic group they belong to. "My daughter was...more

Shahnaz Kamal Khan's shields and badges are seen at her home in Peshawar. When her husband Syed Kamal Khan discovered her interest, he started coaching her, breaking with social norms of Pathans -- the ethnic group they belong to. "My daughter was born and I thought, 'If there is no one else, I will make my daughter a boxer,'" he said. "But then there had to be a female coach for my daughter. So for this purpose, I tore right through the Pathan culture and brought my wife into boxing. I have no objection to that at all." REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
4 / 10
She started training her children on the rooftop of her house in 2008. Two years later, when there were interprovincial games, she trained some girls in the rooftop gym as there were no facilities for them to learn the sport. Some quit but others have continued: A few of the girls who were trained there have gone on to win medals in the South Asian Games.

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

She started training her children on the rooftop of her house in 2008. Two years later, when there were interprovincial games, she trained some girls in the rooftop gym as there were no facilities for them to learn the sport. Some quit but others...more

She started training her children on the rooftop of her house in 2008. Two years later, when there were interprovincial games, she trained some girls in the rooftop gym as there were no facilities for them to learn the sport. Some quit but others have continued: A few of the girls who were trained there have gone on to win medals in the South Asian Games. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
5 / 10
Shahnaz Kamal shops at a store with her son in Peshawar. Kamal, 37, has three daughters and a son, and is keen for her children to take on the sport. One of her daughters, Hadiya Kamal, 14, even won a gold medal in 2019 at the interprovincial games.

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal shops at a store with her son in Peshawar. Kamal, 37, has three daughters and a son, and is keen for her children to take on the sport. One of her daughters, Hadiya Kamal, 14, even won a gold medal in 2019 at the interprovincial...more

Shahnaz Kamal shops at a store with her son in Peshawar. Kamal, 37, has three daughters and a son, and is keen for her children to take on the sport. One of her daughters, Hadiya Kamal, 14, even won a gold medal in 2019 at the interprovincial games. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
6 / 10
A boxing student takes instructions from Shahnaz Kamal Khan (R) during a training session in Peshawar. To date, Kamal reckons she has trained around 600 male and 150 female boxers. She says there would be more if there were government support.

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

A boxing student takes instructions from Shahnaz Kamal Khan (R) during a training session in Peshawar. To date, Kamal reckons she has trained around 600 male and 150 female boxers. She says there would be more if there were government...more

A boxing student takes instructions from Shahnaz Kamal Khan (R) during a training session in Peshawar. To date, Kamal reckons she has trained around 600 male and 150 female boxers. She says there would be more if there were government support. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
7 / 10
Shahnaz Kamal Khan coaches a student at the stadium in Peshawar. "The future of female boxing in Pakistan is very bright, but only if we get a little bit of support," she said. "We had taken a start from zero, but by the grace of God, we have gone on to around 80 or 90 percent. If the government supports us, the community supports us, God willing we can produce a 100 percent result, like we did in the National Games."

REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan coaches a student at the stadium in Peshawar. "The future of female boxing in Pakistan is very bright, but only if we get a little bit of support," she said. "We had taken a start from zero, but by the grace of God, we have gone on...more

Shahnaz Kamal Khan coaches a student at the stadium in Peshawar. "The future of female boxing in Pakistan is very bright, but only if we get a little bit of support," she said. "We had taken a start from zero, but by the grace of God, we have gone on to around 80 or 90 percent. If the government supports us, the community supports us, God willing we can produce a 100 percent result, like we did in the National Games." REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
8 / 10
Shahnaz Kamal Khan gestures as she speaks to students (not pictured) during a training session in Peshawar. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan gestures as she speaks to students (not pictured) during a training session in Peshawar. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan gestures as she speaks to students (not pictured) during a training session in Peshawar. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
9 / 10
Shahnaz Kamal Khan holds a tray of tea for guests at her home in Peshawar. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan holds a tray of tea for guests at her home in Peshawar. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Shahnaz Kamal Khan holds a tray of tea for guests at her home in Peshawar. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz
Close
10 / 10

Next Slideshows

Best of the Australian Open

Highlights from the 2020 Australian Open in Melbourne.

03 Feb 2020

Lakers play first game since Kobe Bryant's death

The Los Angeles Lakers played their first game since Kobe Bryant, his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others were killed in a helicopter crash Sunday,...

02 Feb 2020

Week in sports

Our top sports images from the past week.

20 Jan 2020

Dakar Rally 2020

Stunning images as vehicles race from Jeddah to Qiddiya in Saudi Arabia.

14 Jan 2020

MORE IN PICTURES

Solitary scenes in the coronavirus pandemic

Solitary scenes in the coronavirus pandemic

Images of isolation in the time of coronavirus self-quarantine.

Photos of the week

Photos of the week

Our top photos from the past week.

Quarantine culture from rooftops, balconies and windows

Quarantine culture from rooftops, balconies and windows

People self-isolate together, finding communities with neighbors from their balconies, windows and rooftops.

Constructing temporary coronavirus hospitals

Constructing temporary coronavirus hospitals

Governments around the world scramble to build temporary facilities to treat COVID-19 patients amid a shortage of intensive care beds and ventilators.

Brazil's coronavirus lockdown seen from above

Brazil's coronavirus lockdown seen from above

Aerial views of a deserted Rio de Janeiro under coronavirus lockdown.

Homeless stuck on the streets during coronavirus lockdown

Homeless stuck on the streets during coronavirus lockdown

As most of the world headed indoors to wait out the coronavirus, the homeless are stranded with nowhere else to go.

Inside an Italian hospital's COVID-19 unit

Inside an Italian hospital's COVID-19 unit

Medical staff in the intensive care unit at Milan's San Raffaele hospital treat patients with coronavirus.

Locked-down no longer, China's Hubei begins return to normal

Locked-down no longer, China's Hubei begins return to normal

Life started returning to normal after two months of lockdown in Hubei province, epicenter of China's coronavirus outbreak, with traffic controls lifted, construction resuming and people catching buses and trains across once-shut borders.

Empty spaces amid coronavirus

Empty spaces amid coronavirus

Cinemas, stadiums, town squares, churches and other public gathering places are devoid of people as the coronavirus spreads around the world.

Trending Collections

Pictures

Podcast