Bhutan’s top archer? A woman.

Archery is Bhutan’s national sport. The country has participated in the Summer Games since 1984, invited to compete under the “universality invitation” awarded to small or developing nations to ensure diversity at the games.

For the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo, Bhutan will—for the first time—have an archer competing on merit alone.

Meet the athlete, Karma, a 29-year-old woman from Thimphu with remarkable aim and arms of steel.

Archery is a men’s sport in her home country. “Traditionally,” explains Karma, “Bhutanese girls are on the cheering side. Girls usually shy away when it comes to sports. [They] think that they can’t do as well as the men.”

Karma showed her mettle during the Asian Continental Qualification Tournament in Bangkok in late 2019. “It’s the first time for Bhutan to compete in a quarterfinal, so I feel very happy and very lucky to shoot,” says Karma. “I feel my dream comes true. Before, it was a wildcard entry for me. Now I can compete with others, thank you so much.”

Interested in a journey to the peaceful Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan? Contact Kiran Chand at or call 888-490-8013.

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