11/03/2014 09:49 EST | Updated 01/03/2015 05:59 EST

Germany opens door to inclusion of disabled athletes in national competitions

LEIPZIG, Germany - Germany's athletics federation has decided to include disabled athletes in national competitions, although their results will be counted separately.

The ruling takes effect on Jan. 1 and stems from the debate surrounding Paralympic champion Markus Rehm, an amputee who won the national long jump title competing with a carbon-fiber prosthesis.

The federation left Rehm off the national team for the European Championships and argued that the prosthesis gives him an unfair advantage.

The federation says the ruling will stay in force until it is determined scientifically whether prostheses and similar aides give a competitive advantage or not, or until the international federation makes a decision.

The federation also ruled that Rehm can keep his title despite the possibility that the prosthesis gave him an unfair edge.