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US Biathlon Announces New Transgender Athlete Policy

by USBA Staff

NEW GLOUCESTER, Maine (August 1, 2022) - In an effort to broaden its reach to all athletes, the US Biathlon Association (USBA) announced a new policy to define a simple protocol for transgender athletes in U15, U17 and Masters categories at USBA national-level events. 

US Biathlon’s new policy allows young athletes and masters to compete in the category that they feel best aligns with their gender identity. Athletes must stay in the same category for an entire season, though they can appeal to a panel to change gender category mid-season. The policy applies to USBA national-level events, including the US Biathlon National Championships. USBA is encouraging clubs to adopt similar policies for local races. The full policy can be found on the USBA Website HERE.

“The benefits of sport on children, including the benefits of physical activity and those to mental health, are well documented,” said USBA President and CEO Max Cobb. “Engaging a fully inclusive participation policy is a priority for US Biathlon; we see the important role governing bodies play with inclusive participation as incredibly important. US Biathlon aims to be a safe space for all athletes, and hopes this policy will encourage athletes to join the sport as their true selves.”

US Biathlon is one of the first winter national governing bodies to adopt a protocol fostering more inclusion of the transgender community in sport.

The new policy will not affect athletes in the International Biathlon Union categories of youth, junior and senior, nor those competing for spots on international teams. US Biathlon awaits policy guidance from the IBU for those athletes.

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