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Aquatics World Cup adds "Open" category where trans swimmers can compete


The World Cup in Berlin, which takes place from October 6 to 8, will debut the Open category, a classification that the International Swimming Federation was created more than a year ago when it made public the prohibition of transgender athletes competing in the female category.

The birth of this new category, which was supported by 71.5% of the members attending the FINA Extraordinary Congress last year, aims, according to World Aquatics, “the organization’s unwavering commitment to inclusion, giving welcome swimmers of all sexes and gender identities.”

It is a pilot project, with races in the distances of 50 and 100 meters in all styles, with the possibility of introducing additional events. All tests will take place in a 50 meter pool, according to international standards.

This category aims to respond to the inclusion of transgender or binary athletes, whose presence in women’s events in some championships, such as the university ones in the United States, generated enormous controversy and forced the different International Federations to start legislating about it.

In addition to FINA, many other federations have restricted the presence of trans athletes in women’s events, such as World Athletics or the International Rugby Federation.