Female athletes and testosterone

(237 Posts)
Queuingroundtheblock Thu 01-Jul-21 20:19:23

Just musing with a friend and we wondered - is the 10 nanomole testosterone limit for Olympic trans women athletes only for tw? Could women take testosterone to boost performance? I mean, obviously it's a really bad idea but just wondered if it's now allowed?

OP’s posts: |
WotgunShedding Thu 01-Jul-21 20:47:30

I was wondering similar. If they identified as non binary or even as a trans woman born in a cis woman’s body (forgive the terminology but am trying to phrase it so it fits in with the ideology the IOC is awash in) what’s to say they can’t take testosterone?

PennineSpring Thu 01-Jul-21 20:48:48

They’ll be done for doping offences as testosterone is a banned substance.
Yeah, I know. Bonkers, ain’t it.

OffYouGoNow Thu 01-Jul-21 21:00:42

AFAIK - female athletes would be banned for life.

It’s almost as if authorities can work out decisions based on sex...

Redapplewreath Thu 01-Jul-21 21:25:20

Isn't that horribly limiting their right to compete in the self that they choose? And sport is all about inclusion above all else? If the upper limit of testosterone has been put way above that of female people for women's sport then female people should have the right to dope up to the same levels permitted for other women.

BatmansBat Thu 01-Jul-21 21:36:02

www.google.co.uk/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/science/2019/oct/15/testosterone-boosts-womens-athletic-performance-study-shows

It seems like a testosterone increase by 4x in women still will be under what is allowed for transwomen. And it will increase female performance with 8.5%….

Billybagpuss Thu 01-Jul-21 21:43:39

This is what the East Germans did in the 70s. It had very long lasting impact.

www.pbs.org/wnet/secrets/the-state-sponsored-doping-program/52/

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andreas_Krieger

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Cailleach1 Thu 01-Jul-21 22:40:33

10nm/L in men's range though, and the women would wreck their bodies. I don't know what level of Testosterone was used for doping in women behind the Iron curtain. It may have been much less than the men's range that the IOC have allowed in order to facilitate male bodies to enter women's competitions.

eurochick Thu 01-Jul-21 22:43:33

If one accepts that transwomen are women then women must also be transwomen and therefore allowed to compete with up to 10nmol of testosterone in their bodies. 🤷‍♀️

Cailleach1 Thu 01-Jul-21 23:03:29

Linda Blade is good on this. The males who want to compete against women may not even have to reduce their Testosterone to 10nm/L on a regular basis for the year before they compete against women. They won't have an implant monitoring or anything. If they get monthly blood tests, then there are products which you can take which will suppress a man's testosterone within 12hrs, practically to castrated levels. They only have a very temporary effect. So the male can train with way more than 10nm/L for the year ahead of entering sports against women.

So, you could say 12 times in a year, for a day or two, the males have to temporarily have a testosterone level of 10nm/L.

The IOC seem to love cheating when it involves males competing against women in women's sport and have bent over backwards to allow it.

Linda Blade has written a book. She has outlined how J. Harpers non peer reviewed casual self report review of 8 males who identified as women in later life was all the IOC went on to change women's sports for the whole world. Harper didn't even factor in effects of ageing in some instances. It was a decade or two so difference. Harper even discounted one piece of data which would not give the desired answer. Billions of women f*cked on that say so. Nequals8. Why is Harper on women's hour and the moral maze as an expert. Has no credibility and has given highly biased and compromised data and conclusions. May have been 2015.

nequals8.com

fairplayforwomen.com/dr-nicola-williams-debates-joanna-harper-the-primary-source-for-the-ioc-trans-inclusion-policy/

Cailleach1 Thu 01-Jul-21 23:08:20

I love where Harper refers to 'male like' advantage. No. It is literally male advantage.

GrownUpBeans Thu 01-Jul-21 23:17:41

If a transman takes testosterone then reduces the level to 10nmol and identifies instead as non binary or female, can they compete as a woman?

Cailleach1 Thu 01-Jul-21 23:23:49

I have to post this from J. Harper's 'evidence'. A few people on the internet, self reporting and maybe verification, if it was possible. 8 people, Harper being one of them. Could it be any more dodgy?

Methods
Race times from eight transgender women runners were collected over a period of seven years and, when possible, verified. The collection process consisted of seeking out female transgender distance runners, mostly online, and then asking them to submit race times. Even in 2014 few people are open about being transgender, so the submission of race times represented a large leap of faith for the participants. When possible, race times were then verified using online services listing race results. For six of the eight runners, online checking made it possible to verify approximately half of the submitted times. Two of the subjects, runners three and four, would only participate anonymously, creating an ethical dilemma over the use of their times, versus respect their privacy.

you can download the pdf for free. button on top right of page.

cgscholar.com/bookstore/works/race-times-for-transgender-athletes

Cailleach1 Thu 01-Jul-21 23:37:20

GrownUpBeans

If a transman takes testosterone then reduces the level to 10nmol and identifies instead as non binary or female, can they compete as a woman?

If the IOC allows athletes to use testosterone, then you could have the bizarre situation of all the women identifying as men. The only people in women's sports identifying as women would be the biological males.

These males might then only suppress their natural male levels to slightly lower male levels for just several days in the year preceding the competitions.

I don't know what dose of testosterone doctors (who seem to be ignoring the hippocratic oath) prescribe women/girls who identify as male.

andyoldlabour Fri 02-Jul-21 10:26:12

OK, let us look at testosterone and the effect it has on sporting performance. Back in 1981, I had very low T levels (around the limit the IOC set for female athletes) but couldn't use any medication because I competed in cycle racing, more specifically time trials (individual riders racing at a set distance against the clock, in my case 10 and 25 miles). On one course, I set a personal best (I didn't win) of 21m 55s, which is still around 20s faster than the current women's course record set by a 2016 Rio Olympic gold medal winner.
Testosterone levels are a red herring, often used by people who wish to ignore all the physiological benefits gained by a male who goes through puberty.

Queuingroundtheblock Fri 02-Jul-21 11:18:26

Testosterone levels are a red herring, often used by people who wish to ignore all the physiological benefits gained by a male who goes through puberty.
I agree. Women aren't men but with lower levels of testosterone but seeing as this seems to be what the IOC believes, it seems doubly unfair that women aren't allowed to raise their levels in line with TW.

OP’s posts: |
Ekofisk Fri 02-Jul-21 11:43:10

So, you could say 12 times in a year, for a day or two, the males have to temporarily have a testosterone level of 10nm/L.

If a trans woman knows in advance of testosterone testing, how can that ever work fairly? I though the whole point of out of competition testing was to avoid gaming the system?

For instance, the FA warns footballers that they can be drug tested at any time (after a match, at training, at home etc) without prior notice.

The only personal experience I’ve had of testing is at major competitions (DC competed at a high level), but we spent hours scrutinising the WADA list to ensure all medications were compliant and ensuring that asthma inhalers were covered by a TUE.

Cyclingmum50 Fri 02-Jul-21 11:48:36

10nmls/litre is a myth. Every sport governing body has their own policy so, for example, World governing bodies of Athletics & Cycling policy set the requirement to lower levels, ie 5nmls/l. Because of medication, most trans women T levels are usually below 2.

Just a thought. If T levels have no impact and it's all a myth, why is there such outrage on teenagers accessing medication ? The outrage, disgust, the papers you state on the "devastation" it causes ? So how can the medication have so much of an impact (for teenagers) and then be a "red herring" "a myth" for trans women in Sport. Sounds like just looking for a narrative that fits and suits

Ekofisk Fri 02-Jul-21 12:01:34

Because of medication, most trans women T levels are usually below 2.

Although it’s reported that Telfer missed the US Trials due to failing to meet the 5 nmol/l limit?

Ekofisk Fri 02-Jul-21 12:08:48

* why is there such outrage on teenagers accessing medication ?*

As the NICE evidence review has determined, there is limited evidence for the effectiveness and safety of gender-affirming hormones in children and adolescents with gender dysphoria.

Setting children off onto a lifetime of medicalisation with no evidence of long term safety and effectiveness should be concerning?

andyoldlabour Fri 02-Jul-21 14:41:38

Cyclingmum50

I stated that simply talking about testosterone is a red herring, because it totally ignores the fact that a transwoman would have gone through male puberty and would therefore have benefited from all the physiological advantages which that brings.
How do you know that most transwomen's T levels are below 2? Can you link to any evidence to prove that?

Helleofabore Fri 02-Jul-21 15:38:28

Just a thought. If T levels have no impact and it's all a myth, why is there such outrage on teenagers accessing medication ?

The outrage, disgust, the papers you state on the "devastation" it causes ? So how can the medication have so much of an impact (for teenagers) and then be a "red herring" "a myth" for trans women in Sport. Sounds like just looking for a narrative that fits and suits

It appears that you are conflating quite a few different points here and thinking it is a 'zinger' of a 'gotcha'. But it isn't.

Just a thought. If T levels have no impact and it's all a myth, why is there such outrage on teenagers accessing medication ?

Lowering Testosterone levels have been proven to make little difference to the fairness of male competing against females. Males have advantages from exposure from testosterone from birth and it can been seen as being evident from around 6 years old. If you read the studies, you would already know this.

Adults who have had the benefit of testosterone at puberty have significant advantages over females. Hence, there is no way to safely and fairly include males in female only sport

* it does not stop them competing against their own sex at all. That is where the 'myth' lies. There is NO banning of males who identify as women, in sport, just exclusion from female sports categories. After all, would you allow an able bodied person to compete in the Paralympics?

The outrage, disgust, the papers you state on the "devastation" it causes ?

Hyperbole much?

Testosterone does cause "devastation" to female anatomy. It has been well documented by the women from countries that doped them (some without their permission even) the effects such an increase of testosterone on females.

What isn't well discussed or researched is the full impact to females.

Shall we start though with the most obvious. Testosterone often causes atrophy of the female reproductive system within a surprisingly short about of time. This atrophy means that ovaries are removed. It is already a known and documented effect of early hysterectomies that the earlier they are, the rapid increase in the risk of early onset dementia. It is a very large risk and if you have had ovaries removed in your 20s, you could end up with early dementia in your 40s.

Should I post more?

It seems maybe that you might have your own agenda here for allowing males to compete in female categories of sport that you seem to be very unaware of the effects of testosterone on females.

'Sounds like just looking for a narrative that fits and suits' seems like projection to me.

Ekofisk Fri 02-Jul-21 15:45:26

@Helleofabore

I believe some high profile recent transitioners are currently still competing in their own sex class.

Helleofabore Fri 02-Jul-21 16:00:11

I believe some high profile recent transitioners are currently still competing in their own sex class.

And that should be the case all round.

The studies have also shown that there is potential to change training to overcome any losses of performance due to transitioning.

I really liked the come back from the Samoan's on people appropriating the 'third gender' culture there. They are very proud of their culture and when you have a 'third gender' person playing with other males in Rugby THAT is a powerful statement. The fact that the country's leader felt they had to state that males should only compete with males and pulled their weightlifting team, should indicate that they should be listened to.

PearPickingPorky Fri 02-Jul-21 16:13:04

Cyclingmum50

10nmls/litre is a myth. Every sport governing body has their own policy so, for example, World governing bodies of Athletics & Cycling policy set the requirement to lower levels, ie 5nmls/l. Because of medication, most trans women T levels are usually below 2.

Just a thought. If T levels have no impact and it's all a myth, why is there such outrage on teenagers accessing medication ? The outrage, disgust, the papers you state on the "devastation" it causes ? So how can the medication have so much of an impact (for teenagers) and then be a "red herring" "a myth" for trans women in Sport. Sounds like just looking for a narrative that fits and suits

No, the myth and red herring is the Testosterone level in an adult male being any key indicator of advantage, because the advantage has already been gained via testosterone at puberty, and that cannot be undone in adulthood/once puberty is underway. No matter what a man lowers his testosterone level down to, no matter how long for, he still retains the male advantage over females.

Separately to this, the reasons that people say the effects of puberty blockers are devastating is because the drugs themselves are so harmful, and also the apparently desired effects of taking them are harmful, as they stunt growth, don't allow bone density to develop, and don't allow the child to develop physically or psychologically to maturity, and leaves children infertile with no adult sexual function.

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