Drug usage in the sports world.

Essay by blacklist13University, Bachelor'sA+, November 2005

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One of the most serious ethical problems in today's sports arena deals with the usage of drugs. There are many influences on drug use and there can be no justification for athletes to cheat in order to win. Drug usage in the sporting field is a moral problem. Not only is the drug use clearly cheating and is an ethical dilemma for coaches, doctors, and officials, but it also puts the well being of the athlete at great risk. Why would any athlete expose himself or herself to bodily harm? The most obvious answer is to improve their performance. Since athletic performance is composed of so many variables, such as attitude, strength, competitive spirit, and diligence in training, it is difficult to credit the improvement in performance to the drug. It may be simply due to the placebo effect or to the increased efficient training, but the pressure of taking the drug leads the belief of a "performance enhancement" drug.

An athlete nowadays is faced with meeting expectations of the coach, teammates, family and friends. Coaches are also faced with similar pressures to generate a winning combination, coping with the fitness levels of the athletes and then making demands on individuals, all of which may present the wrong signals in respect to drug use. Other reasons athletes are using drugs include, the coaches' emphasis on winning as the only goal, the competitive nature of the athlete, the media's pressure to win, and in professional sport, the huge financial rewards for winning.

The central reason behind the efforts to eliminate the use of performance enhancing drugs is to create a level playing field for everyone and prevent athletes from having unfair advantages over their competitors. However, it is the major health problems associated with sport related drug use that concerns most...