Culture and Society

Why do some athletes use performance-enhancing drugs?
Answered by Animal Planet
  • Animal Planet

    Animal Planet

  1. Professional athletes are under a lot of pressure to be competitive, and some drugs may help them improve their performance. There are many reasons that athletes are driven to be the best: besides the personal desire to succeed, most athletes stand to make a lot of money if they can improve their performance. Since athletes have relatively short careers, they have to achieve their peak performance level rather quickly. Athletes have been trying to improve their performance by taking different preparations for as long as they have been competing. In fact, even the athletes in ancient Greece were known to take performance-enhancing preparations. However, the use of drugs as part of these preparations became more widespread in the 1960s, when the East German government gave their athletes performance-enhancing drugs before international competitions [sources: Harding, ].

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