Speed Reads

MTF VS. FTM

Transgender Ivy League swimmers face off

Lia Thomas, a transgender swimmer who has shattered records on the University of Pennsylvania women's team, lost two events Saturday to Yale's Iszac Henig, a trans male swimmer, the New York Post and Daily Mail reported.

In UPenn's final home meet of the season, Henig won the 100-meter freestyle with a time of 49.57 seconds, while Thomas finished fifth with a time of 52.84 seconds. In the 400-meter freestyle relay, Henig finished his leg in 50.45 seconds to Thomas' 51.94 seconds. 

Current NCAA rules require that trans women athletes like Thomas complete a full year of testosterone suppression treatment before being allowed to play women's sports. According to NBC News, Thomas completed two-and-a-half years of treatment and has support "from her school, from her team, [and] from her league." Last month, Thomas finished a 1,650-meter freestyle event 38 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher. In video of the race, the crowd hardly responds to Thomas' win but cheers loudly for the runner up.

Henig explained in a June New York Times article that he was allowed to continue competing on the women's team after he agreed to delay testosterone treatment, even though that meant donning a "women's swimsuit for competition and [being] reminded of a self I no longer feel attached to." After one of his wins, Henig pulled down his bathing suit top, revealing the scars from his double mastectomy.