World Athletics Rules Prevent Transgender Athletes From Competing In Female Events

Sports are tightening up on the rules for some athletes.

World Athletics has set new rules regarding athletes that will ban transgender women from competing in female track and field events, and prohibiting any transgender women who have experienced male puberty from competing in the female categories.

According to Aljazeera, the rules of the global track and field federation will stand regardless of testosterone levels. World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said the majority of stakeholders which includes 40 national federations, the International Olympic Committee, and trans groups agreed that transgender athletes should not be competing in female sports.

“Many believe there is insufficient evidence that transwomen do not retain advantage over biological women and want more evidence that any physical advantages have been ameliorated before they are willing to consider an option for inclusion into the female category,” Coe said. “The judgment we took … was, I believe, in the best interests of our sport.”

Above all other considerations, maintaining fairness for female athletes is the focus for adjusting the rules. In the time being, a transgender -led group is in the works to further monitor scientific developments.

“We’re not saying ‘no’ forever,” Coe said. “We will be guided in this by the science around physical performance and male advantage, which will inevitably develop over the coming years. As more evidence becomes available, we will review our position, but we believe the integrity of the female category in athletics is paramount.”

“There are currently no transgender athletes competing internationally in athletics and consequently no athletics-specific evidence of the impact these athletes would have on the fairness of female competition in athletics,” the World Athletics Council said in a statement. “In these circumstances, the Council decided to prioritize fairness and the integrity of the female competition before inclusion.”

Additionally, the council voted to reinforce new regulations on athletes with Differences in Sex Development (DSD). In order to compete in the female category, DSD athletes will be required to reduce blood testosterone below 2.5 nanomoles per liter, maintaining the level for two years as opposed to one.