Legalization of doping would bring athletes to their peak performance and provide a more competitive scene. Athletes compete in sports to the best of their abilities and will do what they can do succeed over their rivals. This meant doing what they could to perform better and gives meaning to the phrase “winning at all costs”. In a study conducted for the journal of sport and exercise to determine why athletes would use PEDs with 224 participants, it was found that athletes who were motivated by extrinsic were more likely to use PEDs (Hodge Et al, 2013).
Since the main goal of these athletes is to gain fame and perform at their best, they turn to PEDs to aid them in reaching it. If PEDs allow athletes to perform at their peak performance, they should not be prevented by regulations. These regulations draw away from the idea of “winning at all costs” by limiting athletes as to what means they can use to achieve their goals. Regulations will prevent athletes from becoming the leaders of their sport and dominating their competition. NFL wide receiver Pierre Garcon stated in an interview on PEDs that “it gives you an upper hand that regular guys like myself don’t have” (NSPS, 2015). When athletes are fueled by the drive to compete and win, they do what they can to achieve that.
Doing what they can involves being able to remove any deficiencies that might hold them back. PEDs become a solution for athletes to remove these differences and allow them to compete at a greater chance of winning. In a sport like baseball, players think in the mindset of “feeling less constrained in breaking rules as long as such behaviors could increase performance or the odds of winning” (Solberg Et al, 2011). Athletes that compete in sports retain competitive nature and are driven by the passion of winning despite other factors. Sports are designed to set aside normal values and create an environment where competition is everything.
These normal values are the reason of PED regulation because these regulations are meant to uphold the integrity of the sport. But this integrity does not apply in sports, rather competitive nature triumphs other views and beliefs about sports. Athletes should be allowed to do as they wish to compete at their peak performance and follow their competitive drive. In addition to being able to compete at their best performance, athletes would also be able to compete with each other on intense yet still equal levels.
Allowing the use of PEDs would provide potential for fairness in the sport given differences in talent and removes unfairness from current illegal doping. With new developments in medical advancements also brings the introduction of new PEDs. With new PEDs comes new regulations and creates and unfair advantage for those who were exposed to these new advancements over those who were not (Schermer, 2008). The removal of regulations would make it possible for all athletes to gain access to these PEDs and use them freely.
This would also prevent unfair doping because exposure to the overall population would allow for an equal opportunity for use. Even with the current regulations, athletes will still wish to use PEDs. With the increasing competitive nature of sports, elite athletes believe “that it is necessary to go beyond ‘naturally evolved talent’ through a combination of advanced training, coaching, supplements, and substances”. (Smith & Stewart, 2015) The concern of these high level athletes is being able to overcome their competition and go beyond what they are capable of. The drive to go beyond what they are biologically capable of is made possible because of the availability of PEDs. The regulation of PEDs prevents athletes from being able to go beyond their capabilities and potentially leave the sport at a stale pace without higher performing athletes. In addition, not all these athletes are born the same and there are biological differences in all of them.
The biological differences between athletes create an unequal playing field because these athletes are rewarded for features they are given at birth (Kayser Et al, 2007). The concern with doping in the competitive sense is that it creates an unfair advantage but athletes already compete with biological disadvantages. PEDs make it possible for there to be a level playing field yet maintain a competitive manner. The legalization of PEDs would allow athletes to remove biological disadvantages that hold them behind the competition. Although legal doping would allow athletes to create a competitive scene, illegal doping would potential be harmful and would destroy the athlete rather than help. Legal doping under medical supervision and management would pose less of a health risk to athletes who use them.
Many athletes will use PEDs on their own without consideration of its side effects. In a study conducted for the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, cyclists who used PEDs were more concerned about availability and strength of these PEDs rather than the health problems they pose (Lentillon?Kaestner Et al, 2011). These athletes were willing to use PEDs that would improve their performance regardless of not understanding the health problems. Regulations against PEDs make management of PEDs limited and without guidance, athletes will use drugs because of their effects rather than considering what could potentially happen. This could result in a greater health risks due to athletes using these drugs at extreme and harmful amounts. In a study performed by the Endocrine Society to display the effects of PEDs on the body, it was found that one of the problems with PED use was the lack of attention brought to PEDs when used in high quantities (Pope Et al, 2011). The harmful side effects of extreme PED use are not publically recognized.
This is a result of organizations placing regulations on them and turning their attention to other matters. These regulations make it difficult for athletes to understand the adverse effects of PEDs and how it can be detrimental to their health in excess. Without PED regulations, it would be possible for athletes to use these drugs with limitations and understand how extreme amounts can harm them. Moreover, these athletes should be administered PEDs under medical supervision. The regulation and allowance of PEDs should be allowed by “physicians who possess expertise in psychopharmacology, psychiatry, and athletics” (Lardon, 2008).
Physicians should be knowledgeable of the risks of PEDs and know their limitations. Regulations of PEDs prevent this because when PEDs are not allowed to be used, medical supervision in not made available. Despite this, athletes will continue to use PEDs without complete knowledge of them. The removal of regulation of PEDs would allow for the assurance of athlete safety as well as provide a solution for certain needs of the athlete. The potential for athletes to perform at their best, at the same level as each other, and have supervised usage of PEDs are inhibited by anti-doping regulations and these regulations must be removed from sports. The overall removal of anti-doping regulations would improve the competitive aspect of sports as well as improve its athletes as well.