Performance-Enhancing Substances

Essay by DdubleCHigh School, 11th gradeA, December 2003

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Performance-Enhancing Substances

No one likes a "cheater!" Why should it be fair for people to take performance-enhancing substances? There is no reason that a person should be allowed to take any kind of supplement that increases his or her ability without any work involved. It is extremely unfair to the hard working athletes who exercise and train to stay competitive. It is also unfair to the users of these supplements. They are enhancing their abilities but at what cost? An athlete has no idea what long-term effects will come from the intake of these various substances. The use of performance-enhancing substances should be prohibited by sports organizations especially if they could cause damage to others or oneself.

What exactly is a performance-enhancing substance? It actually could be considered as many different things such as food and water. However we are discussing the potentially harmful ones like ginseng, caffeine, and ephedrine.

These substances aid in weight loss, boost energy, and also give athletes what they consider to be the competitive edge. (Issues and Controversies 197) Although these athletes reap the short-term benefits from these substances there is no telling what kind of long term effects they might have. To say the least, most of these substances are "too good to be true," however athletes still continue to use them with little fear of the consequences.

What is the point in working hard to do well in a sport when other competitors are taking products that enhance their ability with little effort performed by the user? The taking of these supplements is basically another form of cheating and is contrary to the nature of sport. (Olivier 1) It's also morally reprehensible in that it violates the virtues of honesty and trustworthiness, which go to the heart of the fairness and integrity of...