It has been found that Japanese sport governing bodies which will be present at Tokyo 2020 will not be meeting a gender equality target ©Getty Images

A new survey has found that Japanese sport governing bodies are failing to meet a 40 per cent target of female board members set by the Government for Tokyo 2020. 

Japanese agency by Kyodo News polled 1,089 executive posts at the 59 governing bodies set to participate at next year's Olympic and Paralympic Games. 

One body declined to answer.

It was found that women were only in 175 of the posts - or 16.1 per cent.

Under state guidelines set by the Japan Sports Agency, governing bodies are required to have women in 40 per cent or more of their executive posts.

Only the Japan Swimming Federation for Persons with an Intellectual Disability, the Japan Riding Association for the Disabled and the Japan Para Table Tennis Association met the target, at 55.6, 50 and 40 per cent respectively. 

Five bodies, including the Nippon Surfing Association, had no female Board members.

A total of 70 per cent of the bodies admitted they needed to fill more posts with women and are attempting to appoint the right people.

The Nippon Surfing Association has no female board members ©Getty Images
The Nippon Surfing Association has no female board members ©Getty Images

"More bodies have become aware that they need female board members," Kaori Yamaguchi, a former judo world champion and professor at the University of Tsukuba, told Kyodo News.

"But they have yet to actually appoint women.

"If they say there is no right person, it's obvious they are not serious enough.

"We still have harassment and violence in the sporting world. 

"Old-fashioned bodies cannot prevent such problems and could only exacerbate them."

Tokyo 2020 are expected to be the most gender-balanced in Olympic history, with a prediction of 49 per cent of female athletes. 

Women are still under-represented on the majority of international sport governing bodies, however.