Health

Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

Growing up cheating

Comments (5)
By Peter Hadzipetros

So Jason Giambi has finally agreed to come clean and talk to Major League Baseball's recently-found steroid conscience. The battle against drugs in sports is finally turning a corner.

Sure it is.

If Giambi says that he used performance-enhancing drugs, he can rightly point out that it was at a time when baseball had no steroid policy — it wasn't against the rules to do what you could to hit the ball harder and farther than anyone else. And, of course, you had to do what you could to compete and hang on to your very well-paying job in a field where you might be an extended slump away from losing your livelihood.

It's human nature to want an advantage, to look for an easy way to achieve a difficult goal.

A recent study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine contained some pretty scary stats. It found that more than one per cent of 11 year olds — pre-pubescent kids — admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs to do better in sports. By the age of 15, three per cent of kids made the same admission — and they were taking them more often than the 11 year olds.

Of those 15 year olds who admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs, 24 per cent said they were doing it daily. Forty-four per cent of the kids on drugs said they won an event thanks to the added advantage.

Salbutamol was taken by 45 per cent of the kids surveyed. The drug is normally used to treat asthma — and if you are using it as a treatment for that, you're OK. But if you don't have asthma, the drug can increase your respiratory capacity and give you an edge. The World Anti-Doping Agency says if your urine contains more than 1,000 nanograms of the stuff per milliliter you're a cheater. That's even if you're caught with it in training.

The next most-popular class of drugs among cheating kids was corticosteroids, which were taken by 10 per cent of those who admitted to taking performance-enhancing drugs. Also verboten, according to WADA's list of banned substances.

The study found that boys were more likely than girls to take drugs to improve their performance. They also tended to put in more hours training, had lower self-esteem and showed signs of anxiety. They wanted to win to improve their self-image.

It may be the price we pay, when we're constantly reminded of the financial rewards that very few of us realize in victory.

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

This discussion is now Open. Submit your Comment.

Comments (5)

tim

calgary

i am tired of the knock against performance enhancing drugs. in every arguement i have read they fail to address that fact that the user did not merely use the drugs and become a better athlete overnite. performance enhancing drungs are able to enhance ones performance only if one is willing to put the time and energy into continued training. It is only then that a benifit can be derived. By suggesting that i use an inhaler to help me win a single race, that just doesn't happen.

Posted August 1, 2007 03:46 PM

Jim

Timmins

What have we become?
Our self-image; once self-styled, is now wholy created by popular culture and on sale at the mall. We are so embarassed and ashamed to wallow in our own mediocrity that we demand our children not suffer the same fate. And the price? We forget that when we tell them to "be like Mike", we mean practice every day for a decade, stay clean, and make correct choices. If; after that time, you have been blessed with talent and skill, you might become a star. We also forget them two important details: 1. There are millions of other kids just like them out there with the same dream. 2. To fail at that dream is not to fail at life.
Athletes used to be individuals with a love for their chosen sport, and a drive to win. Now our champions are chemical-enhanced, uber-developed young men and women who are equally adept as spokespersons for nike, coke(2 meanings), or gatorade. How can we not expect our children to cheat if we only rejoice champions? And when our champions turn out to have the conscience of a hangman, who are we to blame them? I say its better to be a unique unknown than a common celebrity.

Posted June 28, 2007 08:35 AM

George

Ottawa

When the only option to compete with the other athletes is to take drugs, then the temptation turns into necessity. If all other athletes are taking drugs, or at least the majority of them, it becomes essential to one's success in that particular sport. I'm in now way supporting the use of performance enhancing drugs, but that reality now exists. The only challenge now is how to hide the traces of the drug in the body during testing. It's a sad state in sports today. The use of drugs in professional sports is even greater than the Olympics due to lack of testing. Which means that if you plan to make it to the NHL, start using performance enhancers at 14-15 years old if you even want a chance to make it.

Posted June 26, 2007 01:41 PM

Kevin

Montreal

Hollow victories. Feeling pressure to win is not the same as having a will to win.

Posted June 25, 2007 08:15 PM

Greg F.

Ottawa

So long as we maintain the attitude that second place makes you the first loser, and we pound these ideas into the heads of our children as soon as they come to understand the nature of competition, then kids will cheat. It's sad that so many youngsters would risk their health in this way -- any drugs of this sort taken before full maturity can have devastating effects on the growing body -- but they yearn to feel accepted and valued. For some, the only way to gain that feeling is by collecting championships and/or gold medals. Lord help us all if we can't do something to help these misguided young athletes who no longer have the excuses Giambi et. al had during the Steroid Era of Major League Baseball.

Posted June 25, 2007 01:37 PM

« Previous Post | Main | Next Post »

Post a Comment

Disclaimer:

Note: By submitting your comments you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that due to the volume of e-mails we receive, not all comments will be published, and those that are published will not be edited. But all will be carefully read, considered and appreciated.

Privacy Policy | Submissions Policy

Back of the Pack »

About the Author

Peter HadzipetrosPeter Hadzipetros is a producer for the Consumer and Health sites of CBC News Online. Until he got off the couch and got into long distance running a few years ago, he was a net importer of calories.

More from Peter Hadzipetros »

Recent Posts

Obesity — it's who you know
Peter Hadzipetros
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Take a break, burn more fat
Peter Hadzipetros
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
On leading horses to water
Peter Hadzipetros
Monday, July 16, 2007
Another day, another toenail
Peter Hadzipetros
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Cooling off before heating up
Peter Hadzipetros
Friday, June 29, 2007
Subscribe to this blog

Recent Comments

i am tired of the knock against performance enhancing dru...
Growing up cheating
What have we become? Our self-image; once self-st...
Growing up cheating
When the only option to compete with the other athletes i...
Growing up cheating
Hollow victories. Feeling pressure to win is not the sa...
Growing up cheating
So long as we maintain the attitude that second place mak...
Growing up cheating

Archives

July 2007 (4)
June 2007 (5)
May 2007 (3)
April 2007 (6)
March 2007 (3)
February 2007 (6)
January 2007 (7)
December 2006 (2)
November 2006 (3)
October 2006 (3)
September 2006 (4)
August 2006 (5)
[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Story Tools: PRINT | Text Size: S M L XL | REPORT TYPO | SEND YOUR FEEDBACK

World »

Zimbabwe's new leader returns, promises jobs in 'new and unfolding democracy' video
Emmerson Mnangagwa said Wednesday in his first public speech since being announced as Zimbabwe's incoming leader that the country is witnessing a "new and unfolding democracy."
Daring defection of North Korean soldier captured in dramatic video video
North Korea's actions during a defector's escape at the Panmunjom border village earlier this month violated the armistice agreement ending the Korean War, a spokesperson for the UN command told reporters Wednesday as video of the attempt was released.
Haitians in the U.S. uncertain about their future, as government ends protected status video
As Haitians look to the end of the protected status that allowed them to live and work in the U.S., a Canadian MP meets with local officials in New York to stress that coming to Canada won't solve Haitians' problems.
more »

Canada »

Morneau's tax proposals still need work despite changes, critics insist
A coalition of industry associations says Bill Morneau must make more changes to the controversial tax proposals he first unveiled last summer to ensure he addresses deep, persistent concerns in the small-business community.
GO PUBLIC Bell customers, employees flood CBC with complaints about high-pressure sales
CBC's Go Public heard from frustrated Bell employees and customers coast to coast after our investigation into allegations of high-pressure sales tactics at Canada's largest telecommunications provider.
CBC Investigates 'My life was ripped apart': Two Calgary Muslim men say CSIS wrongfully targeted them
Two Muslim men from Calgary say Canada’s security agencies wrongly lumped them in with a cluster of jihadis who left to fight with ISIS, and their lives have been disrupted.
more »

Politics »

Live Liberals to offer benefit to people waiting for low-income housing video
The Canadian government’s housing strategy will include a new benefit for people waiting for low income housing, a source confirmed to CBC News.
New Liberals to scrap policy that rejects sick, disabled immigrants
Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen says the government is committed to ditching a policy that rejects immigrants because they're sick or disabled and could be a drag on the health system.
Canada lags on patent applications by women
Canada trails most other countries in the proportion of women inventors applying for patents, says a new study billed as the first to focus on the use of intellectual property by Canadian women.
more »

Health »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Arts & Entertainment»

David Cassidy, former Partridge Family teen actor, dead at 67 video
David Cassidy, the teen and pre-teen idol who starred in the 1970s sitcom The Partridge Family and sold millions of records as the musical group's lead singer, died Tuesday at age 67.
New allegations against Charlie Rose emerge at CBS News
​The morning show where Charlie Rose worked until being fired Tuesday is reporting that two women at CBS News claim that Rose grabbed them inappropriately, with one saying he also whispered a sexual innuendo.
Iran-based hacker charged with trying to extort HBO
An indictment filed Tuesday in Manhattan accuses Behzad Mesri of hacking into HBO's computer system in New York. It says he stole unaired episodes from shows including Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Deuce, story plot summaries and scripts for Game of Thrones and confidential cast and crew contact lists.
more »

Technology & Science »

New High-energy 'ghost particles' can be stopped on way through Earth
High-energy subatomic particles nicknamed “ghost particles” for their ability to pass through just about anything can be stopped, scientists confirm.
Uber can't confirm number of Canadians impacted in security breach: privacy commissioner
Canada's federal privacy commissioner says Uber Technologies Inc. can't confirm how many Canadians may be affected by an October 2016 security breach that the riding-hailing firm initially tried to cover up.
Analysis Peppa Pig's tale of torture? Why parents can't rely on platforms like YouTube Kids for child-friendly fare
Platforms like Netflix and YouTube Kids can seem like the ideal digital daycare in busy families, but as disturbing content starts slipping through cracks in “kid-friendly” filters, parents and experts are questioning how much we can rely on these algorithmic black box babysitters.
more »

Money »

Uber can't confirm number of Canadians impacted in security breach: privacy commissioner
Canada's federal privacy commissioner says Uber Technologies Inc. can't confirm how many Canadians may be affected by an October 2016 security breach that the riding-hailing firm initially tried to cover up.
'Cult-like worshippers' turn Canadian-invented Instant Pot into a phenomenon
The Ottawa inventor of the Instant Pot electric pressure cooker believes he can sell half a million devices in one day on Black Friday. The gadget has already set sales records on Amazon and continues to grow in popularity both in the US and Canada.
HBC says Competition Bureau's mattress pricing probe has cost it $425K US
Hudson's Bay Co. says it has spent more than $425,000 US to date to comply with demands for documents from Canada's competition watchdog as it investigates alleged deceptive pricing practices.
more »

Consumer Life »

Sorry - we can't find that page
 
CBC.ca

Sorry, we can't find the page you requested.

  1. Please check the URL in the address bar, or ...
  2. Use the navigation links at left to explore our site, or ...
  3. Enter a term in the Quick Search box at top, or ...
  4. Visit our site map page

In a few moments, you will be taken to our site map page, which will help you find what you looking for.

more »

Sports »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Profile Vey, Desjardins come full circle with Canadian Olympic hockey team video
In yet another twist of fate, Linden Vey finds himself back in the saddle of a team coached by Willie Desjardins. This time, it's with the Canadian men's Olympic hockey team.
Arthur Biyarslanov: I can't waste another 3 years — it's time to turn pro
Canadian fighter Arthur Biyarslanov loves all that amateur boxing did for his career. But as the “Chechen Wolf” explains, the lack of funding and support from Boxing Canada made the decision to turn pro an easy one.
Akeem Haynes thinks he can be the CFL's fastest man
He won an Olympic medal on the track, but football is his true love. That's why Canada's Akeem Haynes is trying to beat the odds once again by chasing his gridiron dream.
more »

Diversions »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
more »