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 »

CBC IN LONDON The officer and the MP: both tried to save lives, only one succeeded
Keith Palmer and Tobias Ellwood, both fathers and at one time soldiers, are both being praised for their heroism in Wednesday's attack in London.
U.S. House steers toward climactic vote on Republican health-care bill
U.S. Republicans got their health-care overhaul past an initial barrier and toward a climactic roll call Friday, plunging ahead despite uncertainty over whether they had the votes to prevail in what loomed as a monumental gamble for President Donald Trump and his Republican allies in Congress.
Khalid Masood, once named Adrian Russell Ajao, used rental car to mow down pedestrians video
Police are combing through "massive amounts of computer data" and have contacted thousands of witnesses as they look for clues about why a British-born man became radicalized and launched a deadly attack on Parliament, a senior police official said Friday.​
more »

Canada »

Analysis Everyone thinks Parliament should be reformed, but no one can agree on how video
The latest attempt at parliamentary reform in Canada seems in danger of being strangled by parliamentary democracy.
Dennis Oland's lawyers prepare to seek 'complete vindication'
Dennis Oland's second degree murder case soon could be back before the Supreme Court of Canada as his defence lawyers prepare next steps in their bid toward his "complete vindication."
FIFTH ESTATE 'Strong suspicion': Dylan Koshman's 2008 disappearance in Edmonton upgraded to homicide investigation
An eight-year-old missing person case involving the disappearance of Dylan Koshman in Edmonton has been upgraded to a homicide investigation, The Fifth Estate has learned.
more »

Politics »

Some Mounties swapping red serge for blue as they seek jobs with other forces
Heavy caseloads, a toxic workplace culture, concerns about officer safety and low pay are among the reasons cited by Mounties who spoke to CBC News after leaving the RCMP for new careers at other Canadian police forces.
Analysis Everyone thinks Parliament should be reformed, but no one can agree on how video
The latest attempt at parliamentary reform in Canada seems in danger of being strangled by parliamentary democracy.
Canada warned to be prepared for Russian-backed fake news and smears in Latvia mission
Latvia's foreign minister is warning that his country and Canada need to be prepared to "immediately counter" smear campaigns and fake news from the moment a NATO battle group sets foot in the Baltic country.
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»

No changes to The Last Jedi because of Carrie Fisher's death, says Disney CEO
Disney CEO Bob Iger says the upcoming Star Wars sequel has not been changed due to the death of Carrie Fisher.
White artist's Emmett Till painting under fire at NY museum
An abstract painting of lynching victim Emmett Till on display at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York was the subject of a weeklong protest by a black artist who decried the canvas as 'an injustice to the black community' because it was painted by a white woman.
Boston drummer Sib Hashian dies; The Rock pays tribute to him as '2nd dad'
John (Sib) Hashian, former drummer for the arena rock band Boston, died on board a cruise ship Wednesday. He was 67.
more »

Technology & Science »

The politics of Pluto: 10 years later, the bitter debate rages on
More than 10 years after Pluto was demoted from planet to dwarf planet, the debate continues, with leading scientists on both sides becoming more vociferous and maybe a little testy.
Spacewalking astronauts prep space station for new parking spot
NASA wants to cram in at least two more spacewalks before the station's commander returns to Earth on April 10.
Twitter exploring subscription-based version for first time
Twitter Inc. is considering whether to build a premium version of its popular Tweetdeck interface aimed at professionals, raising the possibility that it could collect subscription fees from some users for the first time.
more »

Money »

Keystone XL pipeline gets OK from U.S. State Department
Calgary-based TransCanada has received a presidential permit from the U.S. State Department that allows it to build the long-delayed Keystone XL pipeline.
Inflation rate cools to 2% in February
Canada's inflation rate was two per cent in February, a slight cooldown from January's level.
Canada-wide recession could follow foreign buyers tax in Toronto, Brad Lamb says
Toronto developer Brad Lamb is warning a foreign home buyers tax could cause a Canada-wide recession, but a professor advocating for the tax says Lamb is just "fear mongering" to save his bottom line.
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]
Rachel Homan stays perfect, advances to final of curling worlds
Canada's Rachel Homan has booked her ticket to the final at the women's world curling championship. The Ottawa skip led her rink to a 7-3 win over Russia in today's Page playoff game between the top two round-robin teams in Beijing.
Live Freestyle skiing World Cup: Big air video
​Watch live action now from the freestyle skiing World Cup stop in Myrdalen-Voss, Norway.
Preview Canadian MacDougall set for debut run at 'stacked' cross-country worlds
Brogan MacDougall reportedly is in "excellent form" ahead of her debut run at Sunday's world cross-country championships (CBCSports.ca, 7 a.m. ET) in Kampala, Uganda, where the 16-year-old high school standout will lead Canada's 27-athlete contingent.
more »

Diversions »

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
more »