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Author Topic: Do we need a drugged up olympics?  (Read 3032 times)

Offline bizerl

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Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« on: 01/08/2012 02:08:33 »
I've often wondered where "natural" ability ends and "artificial" enhancement begins. With athletes on strict dietry requirements and horrendous training regimens, how can the line be drawn?

I propose an olympics for strict amateurs that are not professional athletes and where everyone has rigorous drug testing.

AND...

Another competition where anything goes! Go your hardest and enhance yourself as much as you can through whatever (legal) means you can, then pit everyone against eachother. As long as the drugs have passed clinical trials and are "safe" to use (as safe as anything can be), I don't see the problem. People would still have to work very hard to acheive great things, but they could do it with all the support of the scientific community behind them.

Any thoughts?


 

Offline RD

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Re: Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« Reply #1 on: 01/08/2012 09:26:48 »
I propose an olympics for strict amateurs that are not professional athletes and where everyone has rigorous drug testing.

An independently wealthy person who doesn't need to work 9-to-5 could train full-time and have an unfair advantage over competitors who also hold down a job, how would you legislate against that ?, or underhand corporate sponsorship where the athlete is nominally employed by a corporation but in reality is training a full-time like a professional athlete.

BTW how are you going to level this playing field ? ... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altitude_training
« Last Edit: 01/08/2012 09:33:19 by RD »
 

Offline Don_1

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Re: Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« Reply #2 on: 01/08/2012 11:22:37 »
I do agree with you Bizerl, but RD has hit the nail on the head. There can be no level playing field.
 

Offline imatfaal

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Re: Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« Reply #3 on: 01/08/2012 11:44:09 »
Bizerl  - what about the children put on drugs by over-competitive parents and school coaches?  Cos that's what would happen - we have enough trouble constraining training regimes at present for children let alone if drugs were involved
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« Reply #4 on: 01/08/2012 22:29:38 »
I agree that the amateur/professional boundary can be blurred. 

Most successful athletes, especially in sports requiring "style" such as gymnastics have professional trainers, and have had the paid trainers since young childhood. 

Even college students, while technically not paid, they get significant "perks", and scholarships that could be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.  However, building a US all-star professional basket ball team is hardly competitive.  But, then again, fielding college students against all-star professional teams from other countries isn't too competitive either, although apparently the USA did well with amateur BB players prior to the first 1992 "Dream Team".

As far as drug testing.  I believe all the Olympic athletes have rigorous drug testing.  Most have a long history of drug testing for numerous competitive events that they have participated in prior to the Olympics.  So the athletes can show a few years of repeated "clean" drug tests.  Some drugs can show up in hair samples for an extended period of time (although many athletes have short hair).  Fat samples?  Of course, one could use something like anabolic steroids, followed by a very long detox period.  But, say a competitive weight lifter that had a long unexplained gap in his performances might raise suspicion. 

I do believe that coaches and trainers that have ever had athletes that failed performance enhancing drug tests should be permanently banned from fielding any athletes for elite competitions.  Perhaps even black mark the gyms and training facilities.

For a national team competition such as the Olympics.  If a single athlete (or two?) fails a performance enhancing drug test, send the WHOLE TEAM HOME.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« Reply #5 on: 01/08/2012 23:12:28 »
As far as "safety" of performance enhancing drugs.
All drugs have some side-effects.  And the use in sports is often at doses not intended for general use. 

Consider the side effects of anabolic steroids.  I would not want to be competitive in a sport where the only option was to take drugs that could cause serious side-effects, up to and including an increased risk of cancer.

I was looking at the drug detections for the 2012 Olympics.  I was surprised to see an athlete banned for the use of Furosemide, a diuretic, which is often associated with a decrease in performance, except perhaps sports such as Greco-Roman wrestling with strict weight categories.  However, apparently the use in sports is to help eliminate other drugs, and thus mask other substances.  So, a diuretic may mean that the athlete believes they have something to hide.

I'm surprised that they apparently aren't doing hair tests, with the hair, and perhaps requiring a hair sample good for 6 months (head, body, pubic, ???)

Here are some general notes about using hair tests for steroids.

Here is a French study on hair detection for anabolic steroids in soccer players.
 

Offline bizerl

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Re: Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« Reply #6 on: 02/08/2012 05:47:46 »
Well, to be honest I hadn't put much thought into the inital post - it was just one of those silly ideas posed between mates after a couple of beers, along the lines of having sharks in the pool or a puma on the track to liven things up (probably a sponsership opportunity there too), but the discussion has got me thinking...

Bizerl  - what about the children put on drugs by over-competitive parents and school coaches?  Cos that's what would happen - we have enough trouble constraining training regimes at present for children let alone if drugs were involved

I hadn't even considered this - I agree that it's a major issue with children being signed up for these events earlier and earlier. It puts me in mind of those awful "beauty" pagents in southern US where 5 year olds are made up to look like a 20 year old.

I was looking at the drug detections for the 2012 Olympics. I was surprised to see an athlete banned for the use of Furosemide, a diuretic, which is often associated with a decrease in performance, except perhaps sports such as Greco-Roman wrestling with strict weight categories.  However, apparently the use in sports is to help eliminate other drugs, and thus mask other substances.  So, a diuretic may mean that the athlete believes they have something to hide.

That's interesting. It seems that the main banned substances being found are either steroids, or this masking drug. My impression was that there was a wide range of various substances that provided different benefits, and that steroids were a bit passe because everyone knew about them.

Any thoughts on the development of a safer performance enhancing option? Do you think there would be an argument for allowing athletes to use performance enhancing drugs that didn't have the adverse side-effects of the current range? I guess it then comes down to a matter of dosage etc.

What about adding a puma to the running track?  :)
 

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Re: Do we need a drugged up olympics?
« Reply #6 on: 02/08/2012 05:47:46 »

 

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