The first “open category” swimming event to accommodate transgender participants will take place at the World Swimming Championships in Berlin in October, the sport’s governing body said Wednesday.
“This pioneering pilot project highlights the organization’s unwavering commitment to inclusivity, by welcoming swimmers of all genders and gender identities,” said World Aquatics in a statement.
The governing body — formerly known as FINA — had previously banned transgender participants from major events such as the Olympics and World Championships, but said it was committed to creating categories open to all swimmers when it first adopted a “gender inclusion policy” last year. Swimming World Championships in Budapest, Hungary.
The open category will debut with 50 meter and 100 meter events across all styles.
Entrants need to be affiliated with a national federation, but will be given the flexibility to compete as individuals, or as representatives of their club or federation.
The competition is scheduled to take place from October 6 to 8. (ab/uh)