Injury Risk and Male Puberty WITH: @Scienceofsport
Sports scientist Ross Tucker has waded into the debate over the participation of transwomen in rugby and the safety concerns around their participation in women’s rugby.
In July The Guardian revealed that World Rugby appear set to exclude transwomen from playing women’s’ rugby on safety grounds following a workshop on the issue. A 38-page draft document suggested “at least a 20-30% greater risk” for a woman who is tackled by a player who has gone ‘through male puberty’.
The news was greeted with heavy criticism from LGBTQ advocates, many of whom contend that the jury is still out on the scientific argument for excluding transwomen. This week Michelle Daltry, who represents LGBT+ Sport Cymru said: “We are asking rugby clubs at all levels of the game to stand with us against a ruling that is exclusionary and that will impact some of the most vulnerable people in the community”.
Now renowned sports scientist Ross Tucker has attempted to answer the question in an extensive Twitter thread on the thorny subject. Tucker, a World Rugby consultant, argues that transwomen athletes in rugby enjoy a significant advantage over their biologically female peers and that these advantages give rise to a higher risk of injury.