Survey: Athletes feel pressure of win-at-all-costs culture

August 07, 2018 - 11:16 am

A majority of U.S. athletes responding to an anti-doping survey say they feel pressure from higher-ups to win medals, and the spotlight shines only on those who pile up victories.

Despite that, only a slim number say they would be tempted to take performance-enhancing drugs.

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency received responses from 886 athletes in a wide-ranging survey that gauged their feelings about several issues regarding performance-enhancing drugs.

Sixty-five percent agreed when asked if the U.S. Olympic Committee and individual sports federations pressured elite athletes to win medals; 61 percent agreed with the statement: "When I am failing people are less interested in me."

Yet when asked if they would be tempted to use PEDs under a variety of circumstances, including if their coach recommended it, no more than 9 percent responded "yes" to any of the scenarios.

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