Sports Features
Gender is Not a Barrier
 30 Apr 2021
Writer : NOC Team
Gender is Not a Barrier - Indonesia Olympic Commitee
Credit: NOC Team

When the call comes, Vidya Rafika can scarcely believe it. Her goal to compete at the Olympics, something that sounds so outlandish, had become a reality. Her participation would mark the return of the Indonesia shooting team after failing to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Fika's interest in shooting comes from her mother, I Gusti Ayu Putu Indra Dewi, a former national shooter who took her to a shooting range as a child.  That led her to become familiar with air guns and bullets.

"It took a while until I finally love shooting. My mom took me to the shooting range, then brought me to swimming lessons because the basis for shooting is breathing. After mastering several styles, she asked me to become a shooting athlete," said Fika after a training session at the PP Perbakin Shooting Range in Senayan, Jakarta.

She did not immediately agree with her mother's request. She rejected the idea because Fika, who was in the 4th grade of elementary school, wanted to focus on her study.

"But, she said if I didn't want to (practice), then I couldn't have my meal. For me, wow, it's so hard because I really like food and all foods are delicious. So I took part in shooting practice," Fika recalled.

Her efforts were not in vain. After several years of practice, she won a series of local events. Since then, she has become obsessed with hunting achievements.

She made her breakthrough by winning two gold medals at the 2019 SEA Games in The Philippines. She later secured a ticket to the Tokyo Olympics after her outstanding performance at the 2019 Asian Shooting Championships in Doha, Qatar.

This achievement made Fika the sixth Indonesian shooter to compete at the Olympics. She follows in the footsteps of her predecessors; Sanusi Tjokroadiredjo (Roma 1960), Lely Sampoerno (Los Angeles 1984), Selvyana Adrian-Sofyan (Los Angeles 1984 and Seoul 1988), Yosheefin Prasasti (Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008), and Diaz Kusumawardani (London 2012).

For Fika, her participation in the Olympics is proof that women can achieve their goals in any field, including shooting, a sport she's now deeply in love with.

"Many say that shooting is just for men, but it's not. Men have power, but women can also keep up. In terms of psychology, women tend to be more stable [in their] emotions. Hence, we are just as capable as men," said Fika, who hopes to gain valuable experience from her participation in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.

Indonesian shooter at the Olympics

  • Roma 1960     Sanusi Tjokroadiredjo     pistols 50m
  • Mexico 1968     -     -
  • Munich 1972     -     -
  • Montreal 1976     -     -
  • Los Angeles 1984     Lely Sampoerno    pistols 25m
  • Selvyana Adrian-Sofyan     pistols 25m
  • Seoul 1988         Selvyana Adrian-Sofyan     pistols 25m
  • Barcelona 1992     -     -
  • Atlanta 1996     -     -
  • Sydney 2000     -     -
  • Athena 2004     Yosheefin Shilla Prasasti     10m air rifle
  • Beijing 2008     Yosheefin Shilla Prasasti     10m air rifle
  • London 2012     Diaz Kusumawardani     10m air rifle
  • Rio 2016    -    -    -