Stephanie (stephanie_live) wrote in trans_m_arts,

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Transitioning while Training

I posted a near copy of this note in transgender and ftmichaelsuggested that I join here. 

I train in Kuk Sool Won. I'll be testing for my brown belt in the next couple of months. I've been doing this for about two years. After reading this community, it seems as if most people are FTM, but transitioning is difficult for anyone, so any answers will probably apply. Thanks!

I sure hope more people will join this group. It sure is a great way to keep fit, not to mention it's definintely less safe to be a transgender than just about any other minority!

Here's the original post. >>>

I’m into martial arts, and I’m almost to my brown belt. At the same time, my HRT is just starting to have a real effect. Still, I’m not anticipating being out anytime soon if at all (though I’ve heard that it gets awkward, and this is probably an excellent example of that).
Nonetheless, I believe I’m going to have to tell my instructor sometime this year. Last night we were doing ground fighting escapes. Between that sort of thing, throws onto the carpet, and sparring, my chest gets pretty sore. Let’s face it, the estradiol makes my chest hurt, so any pressure causes pain.
I also have the disadvantage of loosing upper body strength, but since we do some strength training, it may show as my strength not increasing. That may be perplexing to the instructors who keep track. I haven't noticed it much yet, but everything I've seen on the net says that there is a reduction in upper body muscle/mass leading to decreased strength (which is just fine with me!). So I'm anticipating it.
Finally, as I develop more, it will become more noticeable even through a UnderArmour compression shirt and a do bahk (uniform). Two days out of the week are focused on throws and ground fighting, both of which require a fair amount of body contact.
My instructors are really cool, and one of the assistant instructors is a lesbian. So it’s not like they aren’t okay with people’s lifestyle, but a lot of people have problems with crossing gender lines.  
Has anyone dealt with this? When have you told your instructor? What about the class? Has there been any bad reactions?
I’m worried that people would start to freak out with the close contact if they knew or could tell. 
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