Fearful female jiu jitsu fighters skip event over transgender athletes

Article content

Female martial artists, fearing for their safety, decided not to participate in a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu tournament in Georgia last month due to the inclusion of transgender athletes.

Advertisement 2

Article content

One transgender fighter, Corissa Griffith, took home four gold medals in the women’s category on Oct. 21.

Article content

Some female fighters said they were not warned they were about to face transgender opponents until they stepped onto the mat earlier this year.

“I honestly never thought this would actually happen in a contact sport, especially not my contact sport,” professional martial artist Jayden Alexander told Reduxx. “When I saw him, I was so shocked I didn’t know how to respond.”

Alexander, who is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu blue belt, fought against Cordelia Gregory, a transgender female, during a tournament in July.

A second female fighter, Ansleigh Wilk, also fought Gregory at the same event, saying she wasn’t told she would be facing a transgender woman.

Article content

Advertisement 3

Article content

“I hadn’t been notified,” Wilk said. “The only thing that brought it to my attention was my teammates. They kept asking me, ‘Are you fighting a man?’ and I was honestly too focused on coaching the rest of the crew to really pay attention to my opponent.”

Both said fighting Gregory was different than squaring off with another female.

RECOMMENDED VIDEO

We apologize, but this video has failed to load.

“The fact of the matter is that he had a man’s strength,” Alexander said. “I train with men and women and the difference is massive. After my match with Cordelia, I sat mat-side and cried as my teammates massaged out my cramping forearms.”

The North American Grappling Association faced controversy in September after news that biological females were matched up with transgender women went viral.

The association, which facilitates standards and tournaments in various martial arts, were notified of a match between Taelor Moore and transgender athlete Alice McPike, who had a 65-pound weight advantage over the 135-pound Moore.

NAGA issued a statement clarifying its policies involving females.

“NAGA does not require biological women to compete against transgender women. Instead, we give the choice to the biological women and if they decline, they compete in a division only with other biological women.”

Advertisement 4

Article content

The female fighters say that didn’t happen, and decided to skip the Oct. 21 tournament after seeing transgender athletes had signed up.

“The majority of the women feel scared to even speak out about this matter,” Wilk said. “They don’t want to be labelled a bigot or transphobic. There’s so many girls just not signing up now because they are allowing this. Women’s sports will cease to exist if this keeps up. Medals, belts, records, and money are going to be stripped right away from women.”

Article content

Comments

Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

    Advertisement 1


Posted

in

by