Transgender In Sports

Transgender is among the most controversial subject in the United States, mainly when it concerns sports. Also, regulations and legislatures such as the Title IX of 1972 concerning transgender on the athletic sports are under heated debate in sports management. In theory, Title IX protects both men and women from discrimination due to their sexual orientation, in learning, employment, testing, and sports contexts (Sulfaro & Gill, 2019). Currently, Title IX is mostly used in academia and sports to curb sexual harassment and gender discrimination. Trends in transgender issues disrupt athletics negatively, but possible solutions underly in the legal definition of the term “sex” and a societal paradigm shift. 

The current trends in Title IX could lead to the end of some sports in the United States. There are emerging challenges in sports that require a critical approach, yet the Title IX does not comprehensively guide them. For instance, women’s athletic sports have had many biological males who identify as females winning championship titles in a row (Milanovich, 2019). In 2018, where a transgender athlete won all Raw Powerlifting completion, and in 2014, when transgender fighting in women martial arts knocked out and injured an opponent are critical moments that reflect the change in women’s athletics. In that view, the more biological males identifying as female may dominate the women sporting world, and the women sports as known today would be a technically men’s sports.


Title IX may affect the association of males in some sports and the academic performance of men. Before the inception of Title IX, the majority of college students were men, and so were the athletes. However, the title has led to change in rations; most scholars and faculty members in academia instructions are women (Mullen & Baker, 2018). Since Title IX requires that federally funded schools abide by the gender balance, such schools have increased the presence of women in athletics. In that perspective, boys who have devoted to football all their lives do not have higher chances for securing athletic scholarships or participating in the game, since management has to honor the gander balance requirement. Besides, those who neglect their studies to focus on sports have higher chances of losing both academically and in sports (Cross & Fouke, 2019). Therefore, Title IX has the potential to disrupt the association of men with extreme sports such as football and the paradigm concerning sports and academic performance in the United States.

Such trends have led to a critique of Title IX, particularly on the definition of the term “sex.” Currently, athletic governing bodies do not have a distinct method for allowing or baring transgender athletes. Mostly, they are compelled to qualify athletes regarding their testosterone levels. However, the method is prone to discrimination. Sulfaro & Gill (2019) adds that in the surge if the #MeToo campaign, most transgender revealed to face neglect when they reported sexual assault. Both scenarios reveal that Title IX has failed to explain the limits of sexual orientation in the representation and purpose of athletics; hence the need for the definition of the word “sex.”

A sensitive resolution to transgender challenges in sports requires a paradigm shift. First, society should stop conditioning the members regarding their masculine of feminine position or roles (Senne, 2016). That way, there will be less discrimination or ridicule in the representation and perception of gender. Secondly, the transgender representation should have a strict definition. That is, one’s gender identification should either be through sex or their adopted gender inclination (Fausto-Sterling, 2019). That way, there will be minimal cases of discrimination against transgender athletes, and there may be increases in support for their performance in society.

State-wide policies concerning transgender representation are prone to affect private and religious schools significantly. Schools that have not yet accepted transgender issues may begin to hire LGBT staff and enroll transgender students. Besides, they may begin setting up management and other structures that align with the policy. Both public and private or religious schools would have similar gender acceptance and representation. Overall, the policy would affect the societal view of gender representation in academics and sports.

I think the solution to the transgender challenger in academia and athletic should be identifying a boundary between sexes and the purpose of sports. Through the supreme court, and the amendment of Title IX should provide the definitions of the term “sex” regarding the transgender issue. That way, institutions, and sports management, will restructure their selection and acceptance of students, athletes, and staff regardless of their gender inclination. There may be a holistic acceptance for transgender people in schools and sports. Besides, all states may have similar policies concerning gender equity. Currently, some states have fair policies, while others are strict on transgender policies. That influenced choice of school for youths depending on their beliefs (Barnet, Sorrentino & Nesbit, 2018). Also, society needs to shift the paradigm towards transgender issues, to give all people an equal chance to education and sports. However, it must be done in prudent to avoid changing the nature or aesthetic of sports such as football.

Overall, there is a need for a legal definition of the term “sex” regarding transgender issues, and a paradigm shift to accommodate transgender people in society. While the sporting world may change in terms of gender representation, society, in general, ought to honor the law and adapt to the changes. Society must appreciate both legal intervention and paradigm shift aim to ensure gender equity in sports.


Barnet, B., Sorrentino, R., & Nesbit, A. (2018). The Transgender Bathroom Debate at the Intersection of Politics, Law, Ethics, and Science. Journal Of The American Academy Of Psychiatry And The Law Online, 46(2), 232-241. doi: 10.29158/JAAPL.003761-18

Cross, J., & Fouke, B. (2019). Redefining the Scholar-Athlete. Frontiers In Sports And Active Living, 1. doi: 10.3389/fspor.2019.00010

Fausto-Sterling, A. (2019). Gender/Sex, Sexual Orientation, and Identity Are in the Body: How Did They Get There?. The Journal Of Sex Research, 56(4-5), 529-555. doi: 10.1080/00224499.2019.1581883

Milanovich, A. (2019). Transgender athletes deserve compassion, but not the right to transform women’s sports. Retrieved 8 May 2020, from

Mullen, A., & Baker, J. (2018). Gender Gaps in Undergraduate Fields of Study: Do College Characteristics Matter?. Socius: Sociological Research For A Dynamic World, 4, 237802311878956. doi: 10.1177/2378023118789566

Senne, J. (2016). Examination of Gender Equity and Female Participation in Sport. The Sports Journal, 21(1). Retrieved from

Sulfaro, V., & Gill, R. (2019). Title IX: Help or Hindrance?. Journal Of Women, Politics & Policy, 40(1), 204-227. doi: 10.1080/1554477x.2019.1565460