The IOC Has Improved Their Guidelines For Transgender Athletes

The International Olympics Committee has released a new set of guidelines for transgender athletes and female athletes with hyperandrogenism. The new rules, leaked to Outsports, improve significantly on former rules that required sex reassignment surgery, a process that is financially out of reach for many trans people, and that excluded hyperandrogynous women.

The rules now state that there is no restriction on trans male athletes, and that trans women don’t have to undergo reassignment surgery, but do have a 12-month waiting period after they start hormone replacement therapy. HRT significantly changes the body’s musculature, evening out the athletic differences between cis female athletes and athletes who were assigned male at birth.

Hyperandrogenism came into the news in 2014, when Indian runner Dutee Chand was barred from competing by the International Association of Athletics Federations because her testosterone levels were too high. The IOC’s new rules state that the IAAF is “encouraged to revert to” the Court of Arbitration for Sport’s decision to suspend hyperandrogenism rules, and that if a woman athlete is ineligible to compete against other female athletes, she should be eligible to compete against men, in order to protect women in sport and promote fair competition.

You can read the IOC’s full transgender guidelines here.

Send me a line at