Young men and the ethics of drugs in sport

Young men in the US find performance-enhancing drugs in sport to be highly unethical, a new study has shown. Published by the American Psychological Association's journal Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, the research found college goers believe it is worse to use prescription stimulants to improve school grades than it is to have them for physical pursuits.

Tonya Dodge of George Washington University stated: "This is consistent with the idea that using performance enhancers is viewed as less ethical in the sporting world than in the academic world."

Participants in the study said they believe a steroid user to be more of a cheat than those who take prescription drugs for academic purposes - and Ms Dodge noted this may be because intelligence is less malleable than athletic ability.

She explained the findings of the study could be used to help provide future efforts aimed at preventing off-label prescription stimulant use in the world of academia.

Rhonda Cohen, Chartered Psychologist, commented: "Taking drugs confirms that that winning is everything.

"The perception is that taking drugs to do well in school is cheating yourself, however taking drugs in sport also involves cheating everyone else - competitors and the public.

"Taking drugs in sport is the opposite to working hard as it is instead about taking shortcuts. 

"Therefore, as we prepare for Olympics we can only feel that taking drugs in sport is the same as stealing."