Run, Swim, Throw, Cheat: The Science Behind Drugs in Sport

Overview


In the 2012 Summer Olympics, we will see athletes do extraordinary things. In most cases, their achievements can be attributed to hard work and natural talent. But some will take drugs to enhance their performance. Written by top biochemist Chris Cooper, Run, Swim, Throw, CHEAT explains how people have cheated in the past, how they cheat now, and how they will cheat in the future.

From anabolic steroids to human growth hormone and the blood booster EPO, Cooper separates the ...

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Run, Swim, Throw, Cheat: The science behind drugs in sport

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Overview


In the 2012 Summer Olympics, we will see athletes do extraordinary things. In most cases, their achievements can be attributed to hard work and natural talent. But some will take drugs to enhance their performance. Written by top biochemist Chris Cooper, Run, Swim, Throw, CHEAT explains how people have cheated in the past, how they cheat now, and how they will cheat in the future.

From anabolic steroids to human growth hormone and the blood booster EPO, Cooper separates the truth from the hype, revealing what works and what doesn't work. More disturbing, the book argues that science has barely touched the surface of performance enhancement; there are many, many drugs yet to be discovered. Future developments are limited only by our imagination, research funding, and, of course, ethics. Moreover, recent findings of genetic enhancements on animals show it is possible to create super animals that far outperform their peers, suggesting that the top human athletes of the future may get there via gene manipulation. Cooper also argues that drug testing is of necessity imperfect and the rules arbitrary. And it cannot succeed, as it will always fight a losing battle between doper and tester. But the alternative--free access to all chemical tools--is not necessarily desirable. Just because a war cannot be won, does not mean that surrendering will lead to better sport.

Cooper concludes that the problem of drugs in sports mirrors the problem of drugs in society--we may not like them, we may rage against them, but they are here to stay. No one should think there will ever be a time when athletes can be completely prevented from using chemistry to enhance their sports performance.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199581467
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 5/16/2012
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 987,826
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Chris Cooper is Head of Research, Sports and Exercise Science at the University of Essex.

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Table of Contents

Prologue: A tale of two races
1. Introduction
2. The limits of human performance
3. Stoking the fires of life: food
4. Stoking the fires of life: oxygen
5. Muscling up
6. Steroids and beyond...
7. Stimulants
8. Genetic doping
9. Catching the cheats: why?
10. Catching the cheats: how?
11. Conclusions

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