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Meet 10C Changemaker: Telos Athletics

Posted on: February 22, 2024

Telos Athletics is a queer community organization focused on fitness and wellness. It was founded in August 2021 to create a welcoming and inclusive space for individuals of all ages, backgrounds, sexualities, and gender identities to connect with their bodies and engage in physical activity in a safe space. Derived from the Greek, the word ‘Telos’ has a few meanings, including an ultimate end, the inherent purpose of each thing, and a person’s potential.

Telos uses both the Gryphon Field House and 10C to host sessions focused on flexibility training, strength training, jumping, running, including breathing and mindfulness exercises. They joined 10C in 2023 as a way to expand their reach of members as well as be able to offer a larger variety of sessions. Through their membership, they have been able to provide a quiet, meditative space that is not accessible on the public track, as well as a great place to offer dance classes better fitted to an open space.

Telos promotes health and well-being as well as accessibility/reduced inequalities/barriers in the community in two significant ways. Firstly, they offer a safe and affirming space for activity, this provides much-needed healing and a sense of community for individuals who may have faced exclusion in previous social sports and do not seek out group fitness and wellness. Secondly, Telos serves as an example, paving the way toward a future where every athletic space becomes safe and inclusive, regardless of one’s sexuality or gender identity. The common response to a lack of safe spaces for casual athletes has been to avoid social sports entirely. There is a need for more queer athletics groups as they remain relatively rare.

Telos is a changemaker because they are one of only two track and field groups in North America that specifically affirms and welcomes queer individuals. They are providing the kind of programming that supports the whole person’s well-being – physically, mentally, and emotionally. Through the cultivation of a unique culture of inclusion, Telos has successfully bridged communities, including students, alumni, individuals of different age groups, LGBTQ2IA+ allies, and the broader Guelph community.

Telos events and socials run all year long! Anyone interested can follow them on Instagram or join their mailing list at: https://linktr.ee/Telos.athletics_guelph