Russian Doping Scandal May Keep Country Out of 2016 Olympics

Drugs and sports are, unfortunately, a common pairing. The pressure to be the best, even as young as at high school level sports, results in many athletes turning to drugs to improve their performance. According to the International Association of Athletics Federations, Russia’s problem with athletic doping is especially severe–enough so that the country might be banned from competing in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

A Culture of Drug Use

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) banned Russia indefinitely after the World Anti-Doping Agency uncovered Russian athletes in a variety of sports using banned substances.

Las summer, the World Anti-Doping Agency released some draw-jopping statistic on doping violations in the Oympic games. They used data from 2013 that included 115 and 89 sports. Out of all the countries studied, Russia had the highest number of doping violations with 225 violations across 30 different sports. The U.S. came in 11th. Russian President Vladimar Putin denies the allegations. While he acknowledges that doping and drug use in sports is a problem across the board, Russian officials maintain that Russian athletes are no worse than any other country.

It is true that the drug culture in professional sports has long been an issue, however, experts agree that Russia’s problem is more widespread and even overlooked by Russian officials. The World Anti-Doping Agency’s report suggests that antidoping authorities regularly accept bribes from athletes to say that they tested negative for drugs. Time will only tell if Russia can get a handle on its drug problem and be accepted to compete in the next Olympics.


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