Boston & London Marathons open nonbinary divisions

Boston Marathon
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For the first time ever, runners will be able to register as nonbinary for the 2023 Boston Marathon.

On the registration page for the 127th annual Boston Marathon, the Boston Athletic Association (BAA) included a section affirming its commitment to inclusivity for nonbinary athletes.

The page explains that the race does not yet have qualifying standards for nonbinary athletes, but that runners who have already completed a marathon as non-binary during the qualifying window can apply as such for the Boston Marathon.

The BAA added that it does not have enough data to create qualifying times specifically for nonbinary runners. For now, the qualifying times are the same as for runners in the women’s division. These times are slower than the men’s, and as such are “inclusive of the qualifying times for the two existing divisions,” as BAA states on the website.

“As we prepare for future races, participants can expect nonbinary times to be updated accordingly,” the website stated. “We view this first year as an opportunity to learn and grow together.”

The BAA also said it is engaging in “ongoing” discussions with nonbinary athletes “in an effort to further promote inclusion at all BAA events.”

After Boston’s announcement, the London Marathon also revealed a nonbinary category for next year’s race on April 23, 2023.

“This is a significant step forward for the TCS London Marathon as we continue our journey to make our event truly inclusive,” said marathon event director Hugh Brasher.

In the United States, over 200 running events, including the New York City Marathon, have already added a nonbinary category, according to nonbinary runner Jake Federowski, who wrote a guide to nonbinary inclusion for running organizations.

“By establishing a nonbinary division, you’re creating a space for an entire group of individuals to be seen,” Federowski wrote. “This representation is monumental and entirely necessary… We need to continue listening to, learning from, and advocating for those whose voices are continually silenced.

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