NEWS

Teens dope to boost sport wins

Many teenagers involved in sports have used an illegal substance to boost their performance but most are not aware of the dangers of doping, according to the results of a recent study. The survey, compiled by a research team from the Education Ministry and the Athens University of Economics and Business, found that 10 percent of the athletes questioned had used illegal substances. Just over 10 percent of the teenagers had taken the substance with the consent of their parents while 7 percent claimed to be following the recommendation of a team doctor. The study questioned 1,400 teenagers from the cities of Athens, Corinth, Argos, Nafplion and Ioannina. The teens identified themselves as regularly participating in sports or belonging to a sports club. «Given that the samples do not relate to all cities in Greece, the percentages may not be absolutely precise but a trend is being recorded as far as illegal substances are concerned,» World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) inspector Yiannis Psarellis told Kathimerini. «It is particularly significant that a large percentage of young people do not know which substances are illegal and which are not,» he added. The report indicated that many young athletes do not know which substances are illegal and/or harmful to their health. The survey found that more than a third (35 percent) have taken the substances without consulting an expert. Just over 90 percent said that they do not support doping in professional sports. The research concluded, among other things, that young athletes are ignorant about doping’s effects and ramifications.