hillfarmer wrote: So what? Is there something wrong with realizing what your real gender is and then following your instincts?
ORIGINAL STORY, March 10: Bad news for those looking for proof that transgender women athletes are “destroying” women’s athletics because of what they claim is their “inherent advantage” over cisgender — non-trans — competitors.
They will surely be disappointed in the results from the NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships in Pittsburgh, Kan. Saturday. If anything, they will see that one young trans woman, CeCe Telfer, who’s been targeted by right-wing websites for “switching to female” didn’t even crack the top five in any of her events.
Because of recent regulatory changes from the International Olympic Commission (IOC), the World Anti-Doping Agency, USA Triathlon and other governing bodies of athletics, trans athletes who have undergone hormone therapy for one year and pass Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) tests are allowed to compete without restriction.
Individual athletes and media outlets, from former Olympic judo competitor Ronda Rousey to The Australian (a weekly newspaper published in Australia) have spoken against the IOC’s policy on allowing transgender athletes to compete, often stating that transgender women often have a competitive edge due to higher levels of testosterone.
But despite knee-jerk reactions and opinions, science provides a clear explanation for why, in many sports, transgender athletes don’t maintain any athletic advantage. “It’s not the anatomy that matters, it’s the hormones.”
For transgender men, the practical target for hormone therapy is to increase testosterone levels to the normal male physiological range (300–1000 ng/dl) by administering testosterone. A practical hormonal target for transgender women through hormone therapy is to decrease testosterone levels to the normal female range (30–100 ng/dl) without supra-physiological levels of estradiol (<200 pg/ml) by administering an antiandrogen and estrogen. According to studies, as testosterone levels approach female norms, trans women see a decrease in muscle mass, bone density and the number of oxygen-carrying red cells in their blood. Estrogen boosts fat storage. Together, these changes lead to a loss of speed, strength and endurance – all key components to any athletic advantage. No one gets bigger, faster and stronger on estrogen.
To abide by current IOC regulation, an athlete must demonstrate that her total testosterone level in serum has been below 10 nmol/L for at least 12 months prior to her first competition (with the requirement for any longer period to be based on a confidential case-by-case evaluation, considering whether or not 12 months is a sufficient length of time to minimize any advantage in women’s competition).
Currently, no trans athlete has dominated a sport on the national or international level.