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When equal is not equal

The most important blog I've written. This blog affects everyone in our trisutto family, male, female, fast or slow. It's written by sutto, not the coach, but the father of four beautiful daughters between the ages of 15 to 32 years. The congressional passing of the equality bill in the USA, without an exemption for women's sports, represents a huge red flag for the future of women's sport. This is not about politics, left, right or up and down. This is about our daughters, sisters and partners. This is about the stealing of fair sport for females, not just in the USA, but globally.

All of my daughters took part in team sports during their young lives and through adolescence. Only one has competed in elite level sport, however all were introduced to some form of team sports to help them learn lessons in life, team work, communication, understanding winning and losing, and how to develop self discipline. To help build not just physical health but also psychological health benefits. They, like all our children, came home with bumps, bruises, little cuts, to help them grow in life. In every case, those little life lessons through sport were delivered by members of their own sex - not boys, not men.

The wording of this bill can be viewed in no other way than an attack on the very foundation of women's sport. This is the real headline that is buried inside of this bill. This is not overstating it. Our own inaction from the beginning of what I call the slow creep has allowed it to get to the stage that a government is now legislating it into law. The total appeasement by the media to not even list the actual facts, but to parrot the emotional considerations of a very contradictory story, instead of the real scientific fact.

Here are just three indisputable realities:

1) Testosterone levels

Males range 15-20 times more than females [1]

2) VO2 comparisons

Female aerobic capacity usually in the range of 70-75% of the average male. In athletes this is around 75%. [2]

3) Muscle mass, and composition Males have an average of 26 lbs. (12 kilograms) more skeletal muscle mass than females. On average women also exhibited about 40 percent less upper-body strength and 33 percent less lower-body strength. [3] There are major differences between female and male skeletal muscles, including differences in energy metabolism, fibre type composition, and contractile speed. Generally, male muscles have a higher capacity for anaerobic metabolism and generate a higher maximum power output than female muscles. [4]

To the average practical person, just these facts make it an open and shut case of why biological men should not be able to participate in women's sport. However, don't be fooled that our leaders will take care of this just because it is obvious. Nothing is obvious when politics are involved. The expediency trap of power is always the paramount consideration. At this very moment, any high school student that declares that they represent the opposite sex can compete for that stated preference. At college level, one has to undergo Doctor prescribed and monitored male hormone suppression to qualify to compete for their stated preference. Let's be very clear that this medical programme doesn't change the facts of male born advantages over females. I am not about to play politics. We are not debating the pros or cons of transgender or any other person's rights. We seek solutions that incorporate an outcome that protects female sport. Equality for everyone. That solution is two fold: 1) To make all aware of the facts and spread those to the masses, so all are informed of the physical discrepancies. 2) For all to push hard to promote the need for a third category were transgender athletes can compete against other transgender athletes. Many have said to me that's not realistic. I don't agree. Paralympics has developed to the level that it has now with universal acceptance. The lack of action on this topic will have serious long term negative effects on all cisgender females in competitive sports. At the elite level we are already seeing world championships being decided with transgender athletes competing and winning. The knock on effects are going to be massive, unless there is a ground swell from all participants in sport, from the grass roots level to the elite. Girls dreaming of college scholarships, and winning medals (at any level) through years of sacrifice and dedication in an attempt to make their dream a reality will have that taken away from them.

I'm not being alarmist, rather a realist. Knowing and working every day with athletes of both sexes, from beginners to Olympic champions, the above facts are made crystal clear to me on a daily basis. If this is not addressed, within 6 years women will no longer be standing on podiums at the Olympics. We need to get behind fair women's sport, as it is the most important topic to be addressed in sport itself. The very essence of women's sport is now being challenged at the highest political level in not just the USA, but in all countries.

Just the way I see it.

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