Transgender Athletes in the Olympics

Tokyo 2020 marks the first time an openly transgender athlete will compete in the Olympics, despite there being a policy in place since 2003. 

A Brief History of Transgender Athletes in the Olympics

2003

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) convenes an ad-hoc committee to discuss and issue recommendations for the participation of transgender athletes in the Olympic Games.

Known as "The Stockholm Consensus," the policy stated that individuals undergoing sex reassignment from male to female after puberty (and the converse) be eligible for participation in female or male competitions, respectively, under the following conditions:

1. Surgical anatomical changes have been completed, including external genitalia changes and gonadectomy

2.  Legal recognition of their assigned sex has been conferred by the appropriate official authorities

3.  Hormonal therapy appropriate for the assigned sex has been administered in a verifiable manner and for two years after gonadectomy.

2008

Transgender man Keelin Godsey competes in the women's Olympic Trials in Hammer Throw and places 8th. missing a spot on the Olympic Team.

2012

Transgender man Keelin Godsey competes in the women's Olympic Trials in Hammer Throw and places 5th. missing a spot on the Olympic Team.

2015

Transgender man Chris Mosier qualified for the duathlon world championship and challenged the International Olympic Committee policy, specifically asking for the removal of the requirement for surgery.

 

At the IOC Consensus Meeting in November 2015, parties agreed the following guidelines to be taken into account by sports organizations when determining eligibility to compete in male and female competition:
1. Those who transition from female to male are eligible to compete in the male category without restriction.
2. Those who transition from male to female are eligible to compete in the female category under the following conditions:

2.1. The athlete has declared that her gender identity is female. The declaration cannot be changed, for sporting purposes, for a minimum of four years.
2.2. The 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).
2.3. The athlete's total testosterone level in serum must remain below 10nmol/L throughout the period of desired eligibility to compete in the female category.
2.4. Compliance with these conditions may be monitored by testing. In the event of non-compliance, the athlete’s eligibility for female competition will be suspended for 12 months.

2016

Transgender man Chris Mosier becomes the first transgender athlete to compete internationally under the new IOC policy in a non-Olympic World Championship competition.

No transgender athletes qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

2020

Transgender man Chris Mosier becomes the first transgender athlete to compete in the Olympic Trials in a category other then their sex assigned at birth. Mosier competed in the 2020 Olympic Trials for 50k Racewalking, but withdrew from the race due to injury.

2021

The delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics in 2021 has three known transgender athletes:

Laurel Hubbard - New Zealand weightlifter

Quinn - Canadian women's soccer player 

Chelsea Wolfe - United States BMX alternate