Supporting Transgender Youth in Sports: Benefits, Challenges, and Recommendations – Doctor
Medical experts recommend allowing transgender youths to participate in women’s school sports to safeguard their well-being. Researchers from Vanderbilt University in Tennessee emphasize the numerous benefits of sports, such as improved mental health, increased self-esteem, and reduced risks of obesity and chronic diseases. They advocate for transgender individuals to compete in their preferred gender category from elementary to college level.
However, they acknowledge that competitive sports pose unique challenges for those who have dedicated their careers to the game.In the United States, an estimated 300,000 13 to 17-year-olds identify as transgender, with approximately half being biological males identifying as females.
In an opinion piece for JAMA Pediatrics, the researchers call for active involvement from primary care sports medicine physicians, pediatricians, and families in promoting transgender youth participation in sports and competitive opportunities.
It’s important to note that Vanderbilt University has faced controversy related to the alleged sharing of transgender adults’ health records with the state, prompting a federal investigation and allegations of negative targeting of the transgender community.
Regarding the potential advantages of trans women in sports, Dr. Sin highlights that while some research suggests certain physical strengths, it doesn’t necessarily translate to superior sports performance.
Techniques and various factors also play critical roles in athletic success, ensuring that the strongest individual doesn’t automatically win all medals.
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