NAIA unanimously votes to ban trans athletes from women’s sports

April 9, 2024 / Athletic AdministrationCoaching
The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) announced a policy that bans transgender athletes from partaking in women’s athletics.

At its annual conference meeting earlier this week, the NAIA Council of Presidents unanimously voted, 20-0, to approve the new policy.

naiaThe NAIA oversees athletics for 83,000 student-athletes in 25 sports at 241 colleges and universities across the country.

A recent story from NPR detailed the collegiate association’s decision regarding women’s sports. Below is an excerpt from the NPR story.

According to the transgender participation policy, all athletes may participate in NAIA-sponsored male sports but only athletes whose biological sex assigned at birth is female and who have not begun hormone therapy will be allowed to participate in women’s sports.

A student who has begun hormone therapy may participate in activities such as workouts, practices, and team activities, but not in interscholastic competition.

“With the exception of competitive cheer and competitive dance, the NAIA created separate categories for male and female participants,” the NAIA said. “Each NAIA sport includes some combination of strength, speed and stamina, providing competitive advantages for male student-athletes. As a result, the NAIA policy for transgender student-athletes applies to all sports except for competitive cheer and competitive dance, which are open to all students.”

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There is no known number of transgender athletes at the high school and college levels, though it is believed to be small. The topic has nonetheless become a hot-button issue among conservative groups and others who believe transgender athletes should not be allowed to compete on girls’ and women’s sports teams.

“The NAIA understands that legal action being taken to challenge the policy is a possibility, but this policy is one our membership and board felt like was the right decision,” the NAIA said in a statement to The Associated Press.

To read the full story from, click here.