On 1 April 2023 UKA published a statement in relation to Transgender Eligibility in Athletics and Athletes with Differences of Sex Development which came into immediate effect. We aim to provide inclusive opportunities for transgender female athletes to compete in the sport, however, it was agreed that fairness of competition must be protected.
Transgender people are people whose gender identity is different from the gender they were assigned at birth. “Trans” is often used in place of transgender.
Transgender female: A woman who was assigned male at birth
Transgender male: A man who was assigned female at birth
Some transgender people identify as neither male nor female, or as a combination of male and female. There are a variety of terms that people who aren't entirely male or entirely female use to describe their gender identity, like non-binary or genderqueer.
Differences in Sexual Development (DSD)
DSD (sometimes be known as Intersex) is a group of rare conditions involving genes, hormones and reproductive organs, including genitals. It means a person's sex development is different to most other people's.
FAQs about the rule changes
These regulations only apply to UKA licensed, competitive events. The eligibility of transgender female athletes to compete in other events, including social/club events, in their preferred category, will depend on the rules of those competitions.
This is an evolving area and there is continual consideration of introducing an open category to replace the current male category. The rule changes will have varying impact for different people involved in our sport and these FAQs hopefully provide some clarity.
UK Athletics' processes for transgender females
- If your gender is different from the sex you were assigned at birth, you are not allowed to compete in the female category from 1 April 2023 unless you are approved by UK Athletics as complying with the World Athletics Regulations to be able to compete in the female category.
- Transgender female athletes who were previously approved to compete through the UKA panel process can no longer compete in the female category from 1 April, regardless of testosterone levels.
- If you have already registered to enter an event before midnight on 31 March 2023, you will be able to compete in that event but cannot claim awards, qualifying times or records. Your score will not count towards a team result. This means that a transgender female may compete in the male category unless and until any changes to event categories have been approved by UKA.
What this means for transgender female athletes who wish to compete
- If you wish to enter any competitive events, you must provide details of your sex assigned at birth on your England Athletics registration and this will be shared with the club and event organisers through your England Athletics /Power of 10 profile.
- If you have already completed your England Athletics registration for the year prior to 31 March, this does not mean you are approved to compete in the female category for the season and you will need to ensure your personal data is updated to comply with this UKA regulation.
What this means for DSD athletes
- DSD athletes will not be allowed to compete in the female category from 1 April until they have demonstrated their blood testosterone over a 2 year period to be less than 2.5 nmol/L (nanomoles per litre). Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for eligibility information and support during this process.
What this means for Event Organisers/Providers
- All competition results achieved in accordance with the Rules in force at the time, up to and including 31 March 2023 will stand. We will not retrospectively alter any results before this date.
- Please do not challenge an athlete if you suspect they are competing in the wrong category. Report the concern or enquiry directly to England Athletics email@example.com who will investigate eligibility [after the race].
- This is an issue which needs to be handled sensitively and all concerns raised should be reported confidentially to England Athletics.
- If other athletes approach you to report suspected ineligibility of another athlete, this should be reported directly to England Athletics. You should not investigate eligibility concerns.
What this means for Club memberships/selections
- You do not need to alter the sex of an athlete on your club records, unless they are a Trans athlete who wishes to enter competition.
- Competitive athletes who were registered male at birth will be recorded as male on all England Athletics records and will currently be eligible for the male category only unless they are approved by UK Athletics as complying with the World Athletics Regulations to be able to compete in the female category.
- Personal information regarding Trans athletes must be treated sensitively and any changes must be with the consent of the athlete, and only in order to enter competition.
- Please treat athletes’ personal information confidentially. It should only be shared on a need-to-know basis.
What this means for school age-based competition
The policy applies to Home Country National School Championships and those events where athletes can qualify for Home Country National School Championships. The regulations do not apply to other local school competitions.
Get in touch
We understand that this may be an upsetting time for transgender athletes and EA offers confidential support and advice through our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Manager Harry Stow firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions regarding your eligibility.
Raising a concern about eligibility
This new UKA regulation came into effect on 1 April 2023.
Please do not approach an athlete who you may believe is competing in the incorrect gender category. Report your enquiry to England Athletics by emailing email@example.com