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Sports Drug Testing

Drug Testing in Sports Pros and Cons

Drug testing is like trying to catch a mouse who learns a bit more each time it gets caught. There are 19 official ways that drug tests are cheated by some of the best athletes in the world and some of the worst athletes in the world. The pros for drug testing are obvious.

The reason to drug test at every sporting event will hopefully not be the end result of this argument, but the reason why officials want to test at every high paying sporting event is because of the money at risk. Top class sports ranging from basketball to tennis and cycling, could all benefit financially from enhancing the performance of a key player.

Money is the bottom line for drug testing, winning or losing is based on the idea of competing equally. Having two arms and two legs can now be improved upon by adding a chemical to the blood, it sounds crazy but it changes everything.

There is a group of anti-drug testing people who believe that open competition, just like capitalism means winning with everything you have at your disposal. They insist that despite the fact that the sport has declared the drug illegal, if it improves the performance of an athlete it should be used.

The sports administrators are now obligated to drug test in order to maintain some kind of dignity in the sport itself. The pro drug testing group, quite correctly feel that it is an affront to the whole concept of sport. Diet and training for any world class event comes from dedicated, focused hard work.

Some pro drug testers suggest a uniform code of testing is the only solution, but drug testing across-the-board at all sporting events won't work, not only because of the expense of around $200 each. Drug testing producers too many false positives, so the expense of doing all the required tests are extremely expensive.

The WADA [World Anti-Doping Agency] has endorsed the idea of a global anti-doping system, it also continues to support research into helping enhance testing efficiency. There is not a one-size-fits-all drug test that can be used for any sport, some sports require enhancements that will not be detected on another sport's drug test.

What could be an extremely useful "performance enhancing" drug (PED) in one sport may not provide the advantage in another sport. The poorly funded drug tests done locally always produce a false positive and countless athletes get way with taking performance enhancing drugs.

Antonio Pettigrew is a good example, he was a member of the 2000 US men's relay team and he admitted using performance-enhancing drugs (PED) before the games started at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Pettigrew never failed any drug test done by the IOC (International Olympic committee).

Pettigrew later admitted that he took drugs before, during and after the Olympics. When he was asked if the rest of the team knew what he was doing he admitted that some actually helped him. This compounds the problem, when the whole team including the coach are going against the rules.

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