The Olympics offers a vast collection of exciting sports and the most talented athletes on Earth. What you may not know is that there are certain sports in which athletes are notorious for taking substances to boost their performance.
Here are the top 10 most drug-fueled sports at the Olympics. The substances taken might surprise you.
- Archery and Pistol Shooting: Beta blockers are used to reduce anxiety and help keep steady hands.
- Equestrianism: Yup, even the horses are doping up. Capsaicin is used on the horses as both as a pain reliever and to cause hypersensitivity so horses are more afraid of hitting their legs during a jump.
- Penthalon: Athletes in this event have been known to use different banned substances ranging from alcohol, to calm their nerves, to anabolic steroids, for the strength needed to throw the spear and discus, jump, run and wrestle, to even excessive amounts of caffeine! Athletes were actually banned from drinking too much caffeine before competition.
- Wrestling: Wrestlers have been known to use anabolic steroids.
- Discus, Hammer, Shot Put, Javelin: Athletes in these events use anabolic steroids to increase their strength.
- Distance Running: Amphetamines and erythropoietin (a performance enhancing drug) are popular among doping distance runners.
- Cycling: Anabolic steroids, erythropoietin and blood transfusions have been used by cyclists. Apparently, the increase in red blood cells rich with oxygen gained from transfusions makes these athletes stronger and faster!
- Swimming: Swimmers have used cocaine, ecstasy and anabolic steroids.
- Sprinting: Human growth hormone and anabolic steroids are used by sprinters looking to dope.
- Weightlifting: Anabolic steroids help weightlifters increase their strength.
It’s a shame that so many athletes feel that they must take drugs to compete. I hope that one day there won’t be such a high incidence of doping at the Olympics.