Dr. Beal’s Favorite Resources for Trans Youth in SportsSep 19, 2022
Unfortunately, a lot of states and sports organizations are creating barriers for trans athletes. And for youth navigating binary gender teams, lockers rooms, and more can be daunting. I have had several young patients quit sports they love due to these challenges. As someone who felt like a misfit in my early years and found a place in life on my track team, this breaks my heart. Track and field and my team taught me so much about life, type 2 fun, community, and social skills. It was one of the first places I felt permission to start asking questions that church and home didn’t allow. My track team was one of the first places that gave me space to find me.
I want that for all of my young trans patients who want it for themselves. As many of us are primary care providers we should be well-versed in sports participation physicals. I recommend these resources to prepare for those:
- Brukner & Khan’s Clinical Sports Medicine. 5th ed. Volume 2. McGraw-Hill Education; 2019
- Chapter 30 in Volume 2 discusses transgender and intersex athletes
- PPE: Preparticipation Physical Evaluation Monograph. 5th ed. American Academy of Pediatrics; 2019
- Overview of the preparticipation physical evaluation, including a systems-based approach with inclusion of special groups, such as transgender athletes.
For actual information about states and organizations rules or guidelines, Transathlete is a great resource. Other additional resources I recommend regularly include:
- Athlete Ally
- Focuses on ending homophobia and transphobia in sports through education and empowerment.
- LGBT SportSafe
- Provides training for athletic coaches and administrators on how to create a more inclusive athletic community
- World Anti-Doping Agency
- Guidelines for therapeutic use exemptions for transgender athletes
All athletes have the right to play and to feel safe on the team. These resources can help with that. I also like to follow trans sports advocates on social media like @pinkmantaray on Instagram.
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