After much criticism, the North American Grappling Association (NAGA) has quickly changed its rules and will now require male-born athletes to compete in the men’s division. The change came on the tail of reports that female-born contestants were abandoning a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu tournament because they were being forced to fight against a growing number of male-born transgender women.
After a report last week by Reduxx that women were beginning to refuse to compete against transgender opponents, NAGA took swift action and responded to their competitors’ complaints with a new policy.
NAGA told members that as of Oct. 28, its new policy maintains that transgender female competitors will be required to compete in the men’s category.
Its new rules for the “Division for Cisgender Females” now excludes male-born trans athletes.
“We will have divisions for only cisgender females. Transgender females will not be entered into these divisions,” the group told competitors.
NAGA also added information covering “Division Options for Transgender Females.”
“Transgender females must compete in the men’s division. We hope that the simplicity of this revised policy will help to avoid any future occurrences where transgender females enter women divisions. If NAGA staff is informed that a transgender female is in a women’s division, they will be given the choice to go to the men’s division or given a refund,” the organization said.
In response to Reduxx's exclusive report yesterday, the North American Grappling Association has issued a full policy revision.
Trans-identified males will now have to compete in the men's category.
— REDUXX (@ReduxxMag) October 28, 2023
Brazilian Jiu-Jitzu has been engaged in an internal debate since Sept. when female competitor Taelor Moore posted about how surprised she was to be forced to fight against a male-born opponent without being told ahead of time.
California athlete Taelor Moore faced the transgender opponent on Sept. 9 and posted the video to her Instagram page with the caption, “I weighed in at 135 … and she was over 200!”
Moore’s video shows her opponent, James McPike, 29, who recently began going by the name “Alice,” seeming to throw Moore around the mats easily.
Several other female competitors have also since spoken against NAGA’s rules allowing men to compete in the women’s category, including Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu blue belt holder Jayden Alexander, along with contestants Ansleigh Wilk and Marshi Smith.