Archive for April, 2014

TO THE MAX: Pressures Behind Taking PEDs

Monday, April 14th, 2014

perf

“I have never taken performance enhancing drugs”, is a quote line that we hear often in sports once someone is accused of taking PED’s to assist them in performing at the highest level in their sport. In very rare situations, will we see an athlete actually telling the truth that he or she didn’t, in fact, take anything while either training, recovering from injury, etc. What we do see on a common basis in today’s sports world, is that the athlete being accused of said act, did in fact, take a banned substance of some sort and attempted at all cost to hide this information; so that in fact, they could continue moving forward with their career as if nothing ever happened.

The problem with taking PED’s, or Performance Enhancing Drugs, are the effects that can be created throughout the rest of your life. Tons of young athletes today, currently take PED’s on a daily bases. It is believed that taking said substances gives you the edge you need to perform at your best and move past those that have the natural genetic abilities that those that take these substances don’t necessarily possess. Signs of those that take PED’s may show the following: Increased Acne, Liver Damage, Stunted Growth and disruption of puberty in children, and adolescents. Psychological effects are as follows: Increased aggressiveness and sexual appetite (which can lead to abnormal sexual behavior in form of criminal consequences), depression, and other improper thoughts. PED’s range from “Beta Blockers” to steroids, to HGH, also known as Human Growth Hormones, and even “Blood Doping”; which is common in sports related to use of increased endurance levels, such as cycling, Ironman competitions, and Track and Field events.

Some of the best athletes in the world have all been caught at some point in their career with taking PEDs. Few have managed to fight the system and take lesser punishment; while others have seen their reputation be completely destroyed. As a professional athlete and coach, understanding the consequences that come with these products is something that we all need to understand. Not everything you see over the counter is protected and approved, so please read all labels and do your research when taking ANY substance of ANY kind. These facts are always presented and never followed; but witnessing those you know fall apart because of a self-less act such as this one is not worth it. So please don’t go to the max to be the best in this fashion. Do it the right way, and true success with come.

Joshua J. Horton
April 14th, 2014

The Price of An Athlete

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

L-R: Blake Bortles, Johnny Manziel, Teddy Bridgewater & Jadeveon Clowney

What are teams willing to pay to have the top player in the league? What are teams willing to sacrifice to win a championship? To be honest, organizations will give everything to have the greatest of the greats; the hounds that are determined to prove their belonging to the world. But when does this all begin?

In what is called “The Old Days”, players would push themselves to simply just make it because they loved the game. Hard work was the true payment for success and other incentives followed later in their careers because the rewards had been earned. Fast forward to our society today, and athletes are breed more into the mindset of getting paid now and get everything you can before they even hit the field of battle. Major League Baseball is the only organization that still drafts players straight out of high school. To the sports world, its actually considered common nature, and is accepted because of the amount of work, time, and effort that must be drained out of the athlete in order for that prospect to then at an age ranging between 23-25, to finally have the opportunity to debut. The NBA has become more strict over the years, enforcing the rule that 2 years of college basketball must be played until prospects are allowed to have the opportunity to showcase their talent. Unless you are an overseas pro, at which you bypass this process completely, the delayed superstar, must deal with the pressure of being the best right out the gate once they hit the hardwood.

Problems don’t arise until the discussion of the NFL is thrown onto the table. Prospects are scouted from the 8th grade until they hit Radio City Music Hall; the location of where the dream really begins. The question is should these athletes be paid or receive extra incentives, throughout the entire process? Meaning, these young athletes are paid from Day 1 without even proving if their talent will ever climax into one of the greatest of all time. Northwestern University has already stepped up to the plate, and moving forward thru the process of forming a union; in which, players would begin being compensated for their time at the university.

The days of simply receiving enough to have a room, money for food, and other incentives within the agreed upon scholarship are over. The days of teaching hard work to athletes as portrayed in one of Gatorades newest commercials, were a military cadence is used to show how one heartbeat brings the best out of everyone, are long gone. These days a university losing scholarships is accepted because lets face it, everyone knew they were cheating right? Nevertheless, programs will always continue to strive to be placed among the best of the best. Marketing and Promotion teams will always get the full access to the most stunning events. But with the rise in social media, the questions will always remain until answered; are athletes truly willing to pay the ultimate price that comes with the responsibility of fame? Only time will tell, as every organization continues to have worldwide success.