The proposal that sports be divided into ‘performance pools’ undermines the very nature of competitive sport.
Let’s say I am matched in an boxing competition with a male of the same height, strength and speed. Our ‘output’ is considered equivalent, and thus the competition is deemed fair.

It is not fair.
Male physical output is a composite of two factors - male puberty and natural talent. Female physical output lacks the contribution of male puberty.
Consider a Top Trumps analogy.

Both I and the matched male score 100 for punching. Some amount of his score (say, 50 points) is derived from male puberty and its effects on muscle structure etc.
His natural talent for punching is only 50 points, while my natural talent for punching is 100 points.
Let’s say he (marginally) wins this round. He has won *despite a deficit in natural punching talent*. He has won because this deficit in natural talent has been filled by male puberty points.
If I score 100 for natural talent, and had had the extra points that male puberty confers, my punch ability would output at 150 points and I’d knock him out every time.

Because I’m better at boxing than he is.
Sporting competitions reward natural talent.

To determine who has the most natural talent, sporting competitions are organised in a way that removes the benefit of the talent-independent headstart a male has.
Why should I, a boxer with a larger amount of natural talent, be beaten by a male with less?

That’s not in the spirit of competitive sport.

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More from @FondOfBeetles

26 Oct
Jones et al., 2017 is repeatedly cited as evidence that transwomen do not have an advantage in female sports.

Here is my take.
They performed a literature search of transwomen in sport and concluded that:

“Currently, there is no direct or consistent research suggesting transgender female individuals (or male individuals) have an athletic advantage at any stage of their transition.”
This conclusion is not supported by the data they analyse.

First, the review intended to examine sports policies and participation, and consists largely of qualitative/survey data examining the experiences of trans people in sport.

This is valuable insight.
Read 12 tweets
23 Oct
@PeterTatchell Let’s go with the evidence.

Males who suppress T and do no exercise lose about 5% mass/strength in the first couple of years.

Males who suppress T and exercise mitigate loss and often make significant gains in mass/strength.

Small males are stronger than far larger females.
@PeterTatchell Among elite rugby players at all postions, the slowest males are only a little slower than the fastest females. The weakest males are stronger than the strongest females.
@PeterTatchell If rugby is a game for players of all sizes, strengths and speeds, do you think that the mixed England lineup would contain about 50% females?

No you don’t.
Nobody does.

Because while rugby might accommodate different physicalities, it appears to be limited *within sex*.
Read 12 tweets
20 Oct
People’s Republic of Liverchester? Manpool? I’m no longer fussy.
I’ve even got a Yorkshire husband willing to pledge allegiance to the dark side of it’s against ‘The South’.
Give us a couple of weeks and I reckon we’ll have Nottingham as well.
Read 4 tweets
15 Oct
‘There is no scientific evidence to support World Rugby’s position in exclusion of transwomen from contact rugby’.

Here is the evidence cited by the IOC in 2003, when they first proposed that inclusion of transwomen in female sport is fair.
Here is the evidence cited by the IOC in 2015 when they adjusted their criteria for fair inclusion.
Here is the evidence cited by England Rugby @EnglandRugby in support of fair inclusion of transwomen.
Read 8 tweets
14 Oct
That England Rugby @EnglandRugby have affirmed inclusion of transwomen in female contact rugby, despite the scientific analysis from their governing body @WorldRugby highlighting extreme safety risks, is disappointing but not surprising.

There will be more.
The calls for ‘further research’ are a smokescreen to kick tough decisions down the road.

What might happen in the mean time is now on them.
What do they expect further research to show?

That athletes become inexplicably weaker than couch potatoes, and thus hold a smaller or no advantage over females?

That is truly irrational.
Read 5 tweets
14 Oct
@GMB The World Rugby argument is really quite simple.

1. Forces generated in tackles by males on females present an unacceptably high risk of head injury for females.
Evidence: Extensive modelling of head/neck forces when two weights collide, basic physics.
@GMB 2. That risk is amplified when you factor in the premise that male weight is accompanied by superior strength and superior speed.
Evidence: again, basic physics.
@GMB 3. When they suppress testosterone in accordance with sports fed rules, transwomen lose only small amounts of strength, and there is no change to their bone structure.
Evidence: 11 published cohorts (800+ transwomen) tracked for muscle/strength changes over at least one year.
Read 8 tweets

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