Doping remains one of the biggest challenges in sports globally. The drive to win can push an athlete to do everything possible to gain that edge, and this sometimes leads to using performance-enhancing drugs. To ensure doping doesn’t escalate to alarming levels in the country, the Bhutan Olympic Committee in collaboration with the Education Ministry is organizing awareness programmes for relevant stakeholders. A three-day programme to educate athletes, officials and other relevant stakeholders is underway in Paro.
Speaking at the workshop, officials from the Bhutan Anti-Doping Committee said they have even started testing athletes representing the country at the international level.
The athletes who will be taking part in the upcoming Asian Games which will be held in China will also undergo such tests.
They said the possibility of doping in sports is at an all-time high as sports has become extremely competitive and commercial.
It is also supplemented by the advancement of technology and the easy availability of performance-enhancing drugs and supplements in markets.
“To prevent doping in sports, creating awareness through platforms like this is key. So, we will continue advocating on this matter to athletes representing the country in the upcoming big events such as the Asian games. We will also test some in advance so that there are no issues later in the actual events,” said Nima Gyeltshen, the Clean Sports Advocate and Educationist at the Ministry of Education and Skills Development.
He added athletes who fail such tests will be banned from sports for a certain number of years or in some cases for life.
While conducting doping tests, the urine and blood are collected and the tests are typically conducted ad-hoc, whether during or after competitions.
More than 40 participants are taking part in the workshop which ends Friday.
Namgay Wangchuk, Paro
Edited by Yeshi Gyaltshen