Performance Enhancing Drugs Research Paper Sample
The practice of PEDs had a long history of the Olympic Games. Data collected can be traced back to the ancient Olympics where Olympians would eat hazard meal, in the hope that it would give them athletic edge as history witnessed ancient people use a large number of performance enhancing drugs (The athlete, 1). A research by Richard L.G from The Journal Growth Hormones and IGF Research, stimulants in Brandy and wine, were potentially an ideal enhancer to overcome exertion and injury (Angell et al., 178), (Barnard, 20) . With the advent of modern pharmacology in 19th century, the use of stimulants ascended. Although stimulants like amphetamines were first identified in 1887, however, its advantages were acknowledged in the Second World War (Holt, Erotokritou-Mulligan & Sönksen, 2). It was found that Human Growth Hormones had hit the list of such substances by 1980s and became popular for bodybuilding, and Erythropoietin (EPO) was reported to be widely used before the 2000 Tour de France (Mayes, 24). It also stated that the advantages of doping were made known to the world when Ben Johson was asked to surrender his gold medal in 1988 Seoul Olympic. These findings suggest there is some evidence that doping was the cause of fame and name in the form gold medal (Özdemir et al, 278).
Another study conducted by the National Football League showed that the 2012 summer Olympic Games in London, England, more than 5000 drug tests were carried out using the Word Anti-doping Agency standard. Out of this entire list, nine showed positive results (The athlete, 1). In addition, human growth hormones are not easily detectable. In fact, athletes have now replaced injections to transdermal patches of testosterone, which helps them to camouflage the testing. When these patches are taken off, the testosterone level drops. It is only when they are randomly caught with patches on, that they are liable for penalties (Mottram, 10)
In light of these statistics and findings; it can be seen that the playing field is not level for all athletes competing in sport. This suggests that if a large number of athletes do take PEDs without being caught or having PEDs detected, that creates an unfair advantage for them, and in order to balance it out, it must be considered that all competitors should be given the equal opportunity approximately to the same PEDs so that they have potentially ideal and similar performances (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, 667). In 2005, a study was done to investigate the number of athletes using drugs in Sivas, Turkey (Özdemir et al, 278).The study showed that around 79% of the users of the PEDs asserted that their rivals or competitors had already faked comparable drugs. In addition, 55% of people not using PEDs shared the same argument (Özdemir et al, 278). In addition to this, it is seen in some cases that people can naturally have certain biological condition or attributes that mimic the effect that PEDs give which give them advantage over others not using PEDs (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, 669). The significant example is the Finnish Skier Ecro Maentyranta, who had winning of three gold medals because of this genetic behavior, having 40-50% more red blood cells than normal athletes. As a result of this, it is suggested by Savalescu in the British Journal of Sports medicine (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, 666), that all competitors in sport should be allowed to use PEDs in order to bridge the gap and provide an equal footing to all those competing.
The main argument regulating PEDs use has been the health complications that can arise due to the utilization and put athletes at risk, however if PEDs are legalized and regulated this problem would diminish greatly. Arguments have been made in a number of journals (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, 668). That the emphasis while testing should be on the overall health of the athletes and not only on the use of PEDs itself (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, 670). Studies should be done to the safety of PEDs, as there is not much research currently existing (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, 667),( Özdemir et al,. 278), and PEDs determined to be safe should be legalized (Savulescu, Foddy and Clayton, 670). It is generally accepted that there are many health risks from the usage of drugs, such as cardiovascular or nervous damage that can in cases, be fatal (Angell et al., 184). However, if sports association across the world regulates the use of PEDs under the strict supervision, the risk of such health difficulties would decline (Mayes, 21). Lots of athletes currently buy their PEDs from the black market, which is not reliable, whereas legalizing would mean that PEDs could be tested for harmful effects (Mayes, 24). Legalizing PEDs would also mean that athletes could have the PEDs administered by a medical professional and not by themselves, which greatly reduce risks of a complication arising, as it would be in the hands of professionals in medicine (Mayes, 20).
In conclusion, it has been seen that there is considerable body of evidence that performance enhancing drugs are not against the spirit of sport while questions have been raised all the years, it seems that these drugs only save to equal the field for all competitors. In 1988 the president of the International Olympic Committee, Juan-Antonio suggested that athletes should be allowed to use non-harmful performance enhancing drugs (Pielke Jr, 4). This seems convincing by allowing the players to embrace the PEDs instead of dreading them. From the findings of the research, there should be legalization of drug use in sports so that there are fairness and equity and should hence be considered in future.
Angell, N. Chester, N. Sculthorpe, G. Whyte, K. George and J. Somauroo, 'Performance enhancing drug abuse and cardiovascular risk in athletes: implications for the clinician', British Journal of Sports Medicine, vol. 46, no. 1, pp. i78-i84, 2012.
R. Pielke Jr. '‘A lack of reliable doping data puts the spirit of sport in peril’ « Sporting Intelligence', Sportingintelligence.com, 2015. [Online]. Available: http://www.sportingintelligence.com/2014/09/30/a-lack-of-reliable-doping-data-puts-the-spirit-of-sport-in-peril-300901/. [Accessed: 04- Apr- 2015].
R. Mayes, 'The Journal of Philosophy, Science & Law :: The Modern Olympics & Post-Modern Athletics: A Clash in Values', Jpsl.org, 2015. Vol.10. [Online]. Available: http://jpsl.org/archives/modern-olympics-amp-post-modern-athletics-clash-values/. [Accessed: 04- Apr- 2015].
J. Savulescu, B. Foddy and M. Clayton, 'Why we should allow performance enhancing drugs in sport', British Journal of Sports Medicine, vol. 38, no. 6, pp. 666-670, 2004.
Mottram, David R. “Drugs and Their Use in sports” Introduction. Drugs in sports. Ed. Mottram. Champaign: Human Kinetics, 1988. 1-31.
Haley, James. Introduction. “Performance-enhancing Drugs.” Ed. Haley. San Diego: Greenhaven, 2003. 7-10.
L. Özdemir, N. Nur, I. Bagcivan, O. Bulut, H. Sümer and G. Tezeren, 'Doping and Performance Enhancing Drug Use in Athletes Living in Sivas, Mid-Anatolia: A Brief Report', Journal of Sports Science & Medicine, vol. 4, no. 3, p. 248, 2005.
U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), 'Lance Armstrong Receives Lifetime Ban And Disqualification Of Competitive Results For Doping Vaaiolations Stemming From His Involvement In The United States Postal Service Pro-Cycling Team Doping Conspiracy | U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA)', 2012. [Online]. Available: http://www.usada.org/lance-armstrong-receives-lifetime-ban-and-disqualification-of-competitive-results-for-doping-violations-stemming-from-his-involvement-in-the-united-states-postal-service-pro-cycling-team-doping-conspi/. [Accessed: 01- Apr- 2015].
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M. Barnard, 'Athletes Never Stop Using Performance- Enhancing Drugs', New Statesman, pp. 20-23, 1998.
R. Holt, I. Erotokritou-Mulligan and P. Sönksen, 'KUSTAR - EZ Proxy Login', Ac.els-cdn.com.ezproxy.kustar.ac.ae, 2009. [Online]. Available: http://ac.els-cdn.com.ezproxy.kustar.ac.ae/S1096637409000525/1-s2.0-S1096637409000525-main.pdf?_tid=eb36f938-c686-11e4-9e98-00000aacb362&acdnat=1425924530_24c36663e70f1863dbd5d83015fd408. [Accessed: 02- Mar- 2015].
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