The clarification comes a month after Mack Beggs, who is transitioning from female to male, controversially won a girls state wrestling title. Beggs, 17, had wanted to compete in the boys division. State University Scholastic League (UIL) rules mandated he wrestle as a female, since that’s the gender listed on his birth certificate.
Some parents expressed concern about the fairness of his win, since Beggs had begun taking testosterone and was therefore stronger than the girls he was competing against.
According to WFAA, a new policy adopted by USA Wrestling states that wrestlers who are transitioning between genders before puberty shall be regarded as whatever gender they identify as.
Those who transition from female to male after puberty (like Beggs) “shall only be eligible to compete in the male category without restriction” if the athlete declares his gender identity as male.
This is in direct contrast with UIL’s rule that requires public school students to compete based on their assigned gender at birth.
Those who transition from male to female must meet a stricter set of criteria under USA Wrestling guidelines, including undergoing tests for testosterone levels.
The new rule will allow Beggs to compete against boys in off-season events not sponsored by the University Interscholastic League (UIL). If the UIL doesn’t change its rules, Beggs will wrestle against girls in the high school season.