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MESSAGES->author
joethefanatic (IP Logged)

Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 04:19
The NZRU and Drug Free Sport New Zealand are about to start drug testing in schools rugby and there is a predictable outcry about it.

[www.nzherald.co.nz]

What do we think would be found if such a thing were done here?



... IMHO, of course.

Now in Honolulu

 
MESSAGES->author
jayeatman (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 09:56
Whatever the sport, the longer the authorities are in denial, the worse and more pervasive the problem gets. It starts at the professional pinnacle and works its way down though the clubs and the age groups.
Take cycling as an example, it was all-pervasive, in some well-documented cases compulsory at the pro level, so those lower down take the attitude that 'if they are doing it, then it's ok for me, in fact if I'm going to make it, I'm going to have to.' I hope that cycling is now cleaning up its act.
Rugby is still in the denial phase. Drug testing at the pro level is so infrequent as to be ineffectual. Lower down it's practically non-existent. Result is nobody knows how common it is and it is clear nobody wants to look. I hope it isn't as bad as cycling was but you look at how dramatically the physiques of rugby player have changed and you have to wonder if it can all be by legitimate means.
Is it worse in New Zealand (and SA) than here? Maybe but only because the pressures to 'make it' are greater and so they are a little bit further down the slippery slope than the NH.



BATH supporter since 1975

Adopted players:
2015/6 Tom Homer
2016/7 Matt Banahan

 
ken_jnr
ken_jnr (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 10:30
Lots of people who go to my gym take PED's for no reason other than to look better. Lots of kids make poirly thought through choices regarding the things they put in and do to their bodies.

I can't imagine for a second that at least a minority of young people aren't taking PED's if they think it will give a competitive advantage and potentially a pro contract.

Taking a lot of drugs early in their career is likely to lead to physical changes that will persist for a lifetime even if they come off the drugs and at the moment they are unlikely to get tested so it's win win for the cheats (should they exist).

 
opti
Optimist (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 11:23
I might be being nave about this, but i'm guessing that the PEDs are probably more likely to be used a bit below the AP. Surely, premiership Clubs are alert to younger lads whose shapes change a bit too obviously?

 
MESSAGES->author
jayeatman (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 11:46
You might.
IMO Premiership clubs have their heads as firmly stuck in the sand as the governing bodies. They all pay lip service to dope testing but in practice do the bare minimum.



BATH supporter since 1975

Adopted players:
2015/6 Tom Homer
2016/7 Matt Banahan

 
ken_jnr
ken_jnr (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 14:08
Quote:
Optimist
I might be being nave about this, but i'm guessing that the PEDs are probably more likely to be used a bit below the AP. Surely, premiership Clubs are alert to younger lads whose shapes change a bit too obviously?

It's so tough to tell just by looking/measuring though. Rugby players aren't going for the classic bodybuilder physique and they will go through a huge training load and strict diet plans that their bodies will change massively between 15-21 anyway.

Lahiff and Auterac look like classic steroid abusers. To do that much cardio work, have such low body fat and retain so much muscle is really abnormal. They might just be genetic freaks and take really good care of their diets though. I have heard Lahiff talking extensively about his use of supplements and diet on Corbisiero's podcast. I AM NOT SAYING THEY ARE DRUG CHEATS and I'm hoping the testing regime would catch them if they were. But they are good examples in the Bath squad who have bodies that are not within normal limits and these outliers make using metrics very tough.

You could make a case too that Louw's engine and recovery rate is not within normal limits either. He hasn't had a pre season in forever yet never stops running, which at his size isn't normal at all. He might be average sized for a backrow, but he is still huge for a human.

Armstrong was doing some superhuman things which was all put down to being superhuman. If I was a rugby coach I might quite fancy having superman on my team and therefore not dig too deeply.

 
gaz59
gaz59 (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 14:30
Back in my time at school it was a few [allegedly Lang-Jones sponsored] Brew XIs at the Crystal Palace on a Saturday night and golly did our earlier performance get enhanced

 
opti
Optimist (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
27 July, 2017 15:16
True that, Gaz. RPEDs ... retrospective performance enhancing drinks.

 
DorsetBoy
Dorset Boy (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
28 July, 2017 08:40
There are a number of players from the welsh lower leagues serving drug bans at present. However at the top level the testing regime is a joke - the chances of being tested for a Premiership player are something in the region of one test every 18 months.

Look at the size of players now compared to 10 and 20 years ago - they are monsters by comparison - all achieved by clean means? Yeah right!

Rugby doesn't look, so doesn't find, so the powers that be can claim there isn't a problem.
This is the same head in the sand approach adopted by football (funny how the Dr Fuentes blood bags that were held back from being tested are almost certainly blood from top spanish footballers).
Tennis is the same - again other blood bags held by Dr Fuentes will be tennis players' blood. But not proper testing regime, so no problem is there!

The journalists won't investigate either as they will lose their accreditation and not know what to do on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon anymore. They'd prefer to continue to enjoy their days at Twickers, Murrayfield, Old Trafford, Highbury, Wimbledon etc, etc...

 
MESSAGES->author
BathMatt53 (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
29 July, 2017 20:14
Whilst I agree about the testing frequency DB I don't think that you can compare shapes with 20 years ago? These guys job is to basically make themselves huge with dieticians, computer aided training and analysts etc. I suspect that they also pick guys who are genetically huge. There are vids of auterac at school, he was massive at 18 and there is no indication that he was juiced. Being massive is in his DNA. Same with Roko didn't Flatman say he hadn't seen a gym before joining bath and put on about 20lbs of muscle in about 6 months from just living and training well? There will always be guys seeking a competive advantage though...

 
Lenski
Lenski (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
30 July, 2017 05:50
"Whilst I agree about the testing frequency DB I don't think that you can compare shapes with 20 years ago? These guys job is to basically make themselves huge with dieticians, computer aided training and analysts etc. I suspect that they also pick guys who are genetically huge. There are vids of auterac at school, he was massive at 18 and there is no indication that he was juiced. Being massive is in his DNA. Same with Roko didn't Flatman say he hadn't seen a gym before joining bath and put on about 20lbs of muscle in about 6 months from just living and training well? There will always be guys seeking a competive advantage though..."

Totally agree, my youngest lad has been at a sixth form college and the rugby players get specialised S&C coaching, physio's and even hydro therapy for recovery all on top of their rugby training sessions. They got life style and dietary advice tailored to their needs. I've heard they are even bringing in a sports psychologist next year !
He is now off to uni and he is already huge, I can guarantee he's not on any thing other than a couple of protein shakes a day to supplement his food.
Agree genetics is a a factor and the availability and focus on diet, S&C training from mid teens is producing bigger players.

 
MESSAGES->author
jayeatman (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
31 July, 2017 09:51
Quote:
Dorset Boy
There are a number of players from the welsh lower leagues serving drug bans at present. However at the top level the testing regime is a joke - the chances of being tested for a Premiership player are something in the region of one test every 18 months.
Look at the size of players now compared to 10 and 20 years ago - they are monsters by comparison - all achieved by clean means? Yeah right!

Rugby doesn't look, so doesn't find, so the powers that be can claim there isn't a problem.
This is the same head in the sand approach adopted by football (funny how the Dr Fuentes blood bags that were held back from being tested are almost certainly blood from top spanish footballers).
Tennis is the same - again other blood bags held by Dr Fuentes will be tennis players' blood. But not proper testing regime, so no problem is there!

The journalists won't investigate either as they will lose their accreditation and not know what to do on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon anymore. They'd prefer to continue to enjoy their days at Twickers, Murrayfield, Old Trafford, Highbury, Wimbledon etc, etc...

+1
I don't suppose they're all on the juice, but anyone claiming none are is head-in-the-sand deluded. Maybe the genetically gifted don't need to dope (Usain Bolt, Chris Froome?), but what about those who are less fortunate and need that 'extra edge' to keep up with them?

 
DorsetBoy
Dorset Boy (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
31 July, 2017 14:31
Bathmatt53 - your response is easy to intepret as having your head deep in the sand.
Plenty of young sports people have been told by their 'coaches' to just take this drink or that tablet without ever considering what they are being given. They are young adults desperate to make a career out of the sport they love.

Part of the increase in size is undoubtedly due to training full time but the game has been pro since 1995, that's 22 years and players are quite a bit bigger now than they were just 10 years ago, and are monsters compared to the end of the amateur era. They are also faster even though being much bigger.....

When you know the likelihood of being tested is miniscule, especially in the off season, the temptation will be there and some will definitely fall for it.

Even in cycling which has 24/7 testing and tests in huge numbers compared to all other sports, there are still some stupid or desperate enough to dope. They get caught so the perception is there's a problem.

Rugby, football, tennis etc don't bother to test so avoid the perception even though I'm certain doping is rife in all three.

 
DorsetBoy
Dorset Boy (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
31 July, 2017 14:32
I should add, it doesn't have to diminish your enjoyment though! Just don't be too naive about how they have got to the size they have got to!

 
MESSAGES->author
BathMatt53 (IP Logged)

Re: Performance enhancing drug use in schools rugby
31 July, 2017 15:19
I don't doubt at all as Jayeatman says that there would be people below the top orders using stuff to make up for the lack of opportunity to train.

If thinking that Etzebeth, Itoje, Retallick, george north, Billy V, Watson (i.e. Just some examples of some of biggest, fastest, most athletic) are clean is having my head in the sand then fair enough....my head is in the sand!


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