LGBT International Powerlifting Championships Announce The Introduction of Inclusive Mx Category For Transgender, Non Binary and Intersex Athletes
Registration for the LGBT International Powerlifting Championships 2018 is now open and the organisers have introduced a new “optional” Mx Category (Third Gender) to encourage people from Transgender, Non Binary and Intersex Communities to participate in sports. The LGBT Championships are open to ALL regardless of sexuality, health status, hiv status, gender or ability.
At last year’s event the Union of Lifters that organises the Championships agreed unanimously at congress to equalise weight classes for all participants and to introduce the Mx Category as an option for Transgender, Non Binary and Intersex Participants. The LGBT International Powerlifting Championships are an annual event, with an aim of developing LGBT Powerlifting worldwide and increasing participation between now and the Gay Games in Hong Kong in 2022.
One of the key aims of the Federation of Gay Games is to reach out to under-represented groups within sports and next year’s LGBT IPC 2018 will be the first sporting event in the world to welcome Transgender participants with an optional Mx third gender category. The principles of the Gay Games are built on the core principles of Participation, Inclusion, and Personal Best. LGBT IPC aims to encourage these principles as we grow.
Speaking about the opening of registration for LGBT IPC 2018, Chris Morgan, Male Co-President, LGBT Powerlifting Union and Nine Time World Champion in the sport said, “LGBT IPC was hugely successful in 2017 in bringing together LGBT Powerlifting athletes from all corners of the globe. In 2018 we aim to expand on this by reaching out through to the new LGBT Powerlifting clubs we see emerging around the world. We aim to be as inclusive as possible by equalising all weight classes and offering the new third gender Mx category.”
Speaking about the Introduction of the Mx Category within LGBT IPC, Charlotte Wareing, Female Co-President, LGBT Powerlifting Union and Seven Time World Champion in the sport said, “Issues effecting Transgender, Non Binary and Intersex participants were discussed in detail at our congress in 2017 and we decided as a group to make our event as inclusive and as a safe as possible by offering an optional MX category. Athletes from within the Trans, Non Binary and Intersex communities are very welcome to participate within LGBT IPC without any fear of discrimination.”
Also Speaking about the Introduction of the Mx Category within LGBT IPC, Professor Ardel Thomas, Non Binary Representative, LGBT Powerlifting Union and three times Gay Games medal winner said, “We have seen a great deal of adverse reaction recently to media reports of Transgender athletes competing in strength sports, particularly towards athletes who meet the new IOC Guidance and have qualified for multi sports events like the Commonwealth Games. We are aware of new and novice Trans, Non Binary and Intersex lifters are concerned about participating in sports because of lack of understanding and therefore we have decided to offer an optional Mx Category at LGBT IPC 2018.”
The 2017 LGBT IPC attracted participants from all corners of the globe with nine nations represented including Australia, Belarus, Canada, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, United States of America, and of course the host nation Great Britain. Participation numbers are expected to grow significantly in 2018 with Team GB and Team USA Powerlifting Workshops and Seminars scheduled to take place in Atlanta (USA), Chicago (USA), London (UK), Blackpool (UK), and Birmingham (UK).
The bidding process is already under way for LGBT IPC events happening in 2019, 2020, and 2021, with expressions of interest received already from Blackpool UK, Munich Germany, Athens Greece, and of course Hong Kong, China who will host the Gay Games in 2022. Powerlifting was included in Hong Kong’s successful bid document and the LGBT Powerlifting Union look forward to working with them between now and the 2022 Gay Games.
LGBT IPC - LONDON 2018
The weekend programme in 2018 will include a Coaching Clinic, Technical Briefing, Competition Day, Athletes Meal, Congress, and Closing Party, offering the chance for participants not only to compete, but also to socialise and interact with other LGBT Powerlifters. These are things they may rarely get the opportunity to do in mainstream competitions in their own countries.
The competition itself will take part on Saturday 28 July at Bethnal Green Weightlifting Club, which was established in 1926 and is well known for its strong commitment to diversity within the communities it serves. Events being offered are Full Powerlifting (Equipped & Unequipped), Single Lift Squat (Equipped & Unequipped), Single Lift Bench (Equipped & Unequipped) and Single Lift Deadlift (Equipped & Unequipped).
For more details about the LGBT International Powerlifting Championships and to register your interest, visit their website: www.lgbtpowerlifting.org or their Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/203653086703441/ or their Facebook Event Page https://www.facebook.com/events/2000903610182396/
For more information about the event contact Chris Morgan by Email Chunky@chunkymuscle.com
The LGBT IPC weekend has a full programme of activities including a Novices Coaching Clinic (Friday 27 July), Competition (Saturday 28 July), Athletes Banquet (Saturday 28 July), Congress (Sunday 29 July) and Closing Party (Sunday 29 July) Visit www.lgbtpowerlifing.org for more details.
LGBT IPC 2018 will welcome Trans men or trans women who have decided to transition – who will be to participate within either Male, Female or within Mx Category. The third gender Mx Category is also for people who do not identify as one or the other, such as Non Binary or Intersex. The new Mx Category has been introduced for the 2018 event and the policy will be reviewed at Congress on July 29 2017 after the competition takes place on 28 July.
Bethnal Green Weightlifting Club was formed in 1926 and is a community funded gym, located in Central London www.bgwlc.co.uk
The LGBT IPC weekend closing party is sponsored by The Eagle Bar and The World Famous Horse Meat Disco www.eaglelondon.com/horse-meat-disco
The sport of Powerlifting was part of the programme of Gay Games in nine Gay Games from 1982 San Francisco through to Gay Games 2014 in Cleveland Ohio. It was also part of the World Out games in Montreal in 2006. Bench Press Single Event was part of the Eurogames in Munich in 2004. Powerlifting has not been included in Gay Games Paris 2018 www.gaygames.org www.paris2018.com but will return in Hong Kong in 2022. www.gaygameshk2022.com
Key People - Biographies
Chris Morgan: Male Co-President, LGBT Powerlifting Union
Chris has been one of the UK’s leading openly gay athletes since starting his Powerlifting career at the Gay Games in 1998.
During his eighteen year career he has represented England and Great Britain a total of twenty three times, where he has taken a total of twenty five international medals. He has been World Champion Nine times, European Champion twice, British Champion Eighteen times and has won six Gay Games gold medals. In 2010 and 2011 he was the overall Best Lifter at the British Deadlift Championships and in 2011 was the overall Best Lifter at the European Deadlift Championships. He is the holder of several World and British strength records in the Deadlift.
Chris is constantly working for the organisation that gave him confidence to be an openly gay athlete, as a global ambassador. His role for the Federation of Gay Games is to inspire and motivate young gay athletes worldwide.
Charlotte Wareing: Female Co-President, LGBT Powerlifting Union
Charlotte has been powerlifting for five years, she has won four master's European titles and Seven World titles. She holds 41 World Records in both raw and equipped lifting. She has twice achieved the overall best lifter once each at European and World level. Charlotte was the recipient of the LGBT IPC “Spirit Award” at this year’s Championships for her courage and commitment to the LGBT Community, which she views as one of the Highlights of her career.
Charlotte is keen to grow the sport of powerlifting and works hard to introduce the sport to novice lifters.
Professor Ardel Thomas, Non Binary Representative, LGBT Powerlifting Union
Professor Thomas is the Head of LGBT Studies at the City College of San Francisco and a keen Powerlifter. Ardel started Powerlifting at the Gay Games in Amsterdam in 1998 and has taken a total of Two Gay Games Gold Medals and a Silver Medal between 2002 and 2006. After a break from the sport Ardel returned to competitive lifting taking a Gold Medal at the LGBT International Powerlifting Championships 2017.
Currently, professor Thomas has written several studies on LGBT issues and is a world renowned expert on LGBT Studies.