USA Swimming Issues Transgender Athletes Policy Document

USA Swimming, the sport’s main regulatory organization with more than 360,000 members, put out a statement Thursday on its trans athletes’ policy.

The statement notes a wanted balance between inclusion and “competitive equality.”

The group stated on Instagram it is working to learn and teach itself the right balance in this arena.

The organization stated it already adopted inclusion processes that allow non-elite competitors to compete in a gender-neutral category.

Lia Thomas Breaking Records

The regulations gained national attention with the rise of Penn’s Lia Thomas.

She began shattering Ivy League records while also aiming for national records. She spent her initial three years on the men’s squad, but transitioned to the women’s side this season.

This year, her accomplishment sparked a debate about whether transgender women should compete against biological girls.

Advocates for women’s sports and parental guardians at Penn recently went against the NCAA and its policies on transgender student athlete participation.

The statement referred to the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) guidelines for transgender participation in November. The International Olympic Committee now asks sports federations to develop their own “sport-specific eligibility rules” for transgender competitors.

USA Swimming states it has been “preemptively assisting and supporting FINA’s policy development initiatives for several months.” The sport’s governing body is scheduled to issue a new regulation that USA Swimming will embrace.

The NCAA issued a policy adjustment for transgender players on Wednesday.

Transgender involvement in each sport will be established by the policy of the sport’s governing authority, subject to evaluation and referral to the NCAA Board of Governors by an NCAA committee.

When a sport lacks a national governing organization, the international federation policy for that sport will apply. The IOC’s previously defined policy requirements will take precedence if no international federation policy exists.

Caitlyn Jenner’s Opinion

Conversely, Olympic gold winner Caitlyn Jenner spoke Wednesday against transgender athletes born biological males competing in women’s sports, as the NCAA’s board of governors considers its rules in light of trans swimmer Lia Thomas’ success.

“We need to preserve women’s athletics,” Jenner told co-host Sandra Smith of “America Reports.”

Noting the transgender group’s suicide rate is far higher than the general population, Jenner supported University of Pennsylvania swimmer Thomas’ resolve to live an honest life.

However, the former decathlete stated it comes with a certain duty and ethics. “I have no idea why she is doing this,” Jenner explained. She contends that competing in women’s sports is detrimental to the transgender population.

“She is well aware that when she swims, she is outpacing the competition by two laps,” Jenner noted.

“She was reared as if she were a biological male. Her cardiovascular and respiratory systems grow larger, her hands are larger, and she can swim faster. That is a well-known fact.”

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