• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Threats to the Olympic Ideals

Extracts from this document...


´╗┐Ancient Olympics The ancient Olympic games can be traced back to 776 B.C., and were founded on honorable principles of sportsmanship, fairness, character and civility. The goals of the ancient Olympics encouraged good relationships throughout Greek cities and focused on sportsmanship between athletes. Truce, or the ekecheiria was the most important rule during these times. This meant that all soldiers had to put down their weapons and stop fighting during the games. All hostilities were suspended for the time of competition, allowing all competitors and visitors to travel safely through enemy territories (?OLYMPIC GAMES? n.pag.).[1] ?Eleans? were the supervisors of the ancient games and helped to uphold the code. They acted as overseers during the month training period prior to the games and during the games themselves. The ?Eleans? were responsible for imposing punishments on those who violated the rules. They observed the athletes and allowed those who had trained sufficiently to participate and rejected those who had not performed well. This judgment was based not only on an athlete?s physical performance, but also on their character and moral status (?Ancient Olympic Games? n.pag.).[2] The Greeks valued a ?healthy mind in a healthy body?(?Olympic Athletic Ideal-Olympic Legacy.com? n.pag.). [3] An athletic victory was considered a credit to both the athlete?s physical and moral values. Strong disciplined character was just as important as a well-trained body. Cheating was strictly prohibited. If an athlete was caught cheating in any way he was fined, and the dues were used to build bronze statues of Zeus, the patron god of the Olympic games. The statues were placed along the tunnel leading up to the Olympic stadium. Each statue had an inscription that told the cautionary tale of the offense to remind athletes the importance of obeying the rules (?Cheating in the Ancient Olympic Games? n. pag.). ?Great financial gain and fame was the prize for victory?, causing many athletes push the rules in hopes of athletic achievement (Nowes n.pag).[4] The fist recorded cheating in Olympic history was 388 B.C., when a boxer named Eupolus bribed three opponents to purposely loose. ...read more.


Some Olympic events, such as the Hungarian defeat of the Soviet water polo team in 1956 took a large symbolism significance (Sterngass pg. 37). Drug Use by Other Countries Of course, the U.S.S.R. was not the only country to seek international recognition through Olympic success. Many other countries have defied the Olympic code by using performance-enhancing drugs as well. ?Sports became a propaganda tool and athletic success was closely tied to nationalism and patriotism? (Sterngass pg.37). [11] As medal counts became more important, the use of performance-enhancing drugs also became more prevalent. Steroids first threatened the Olympic ideals by countries seeking political superiority. Suspicion of steroid use began as early as 1968, but the drugs did not become common until the 1972 Olympic games (?Steroid Abuse in Sports-Steroid Abuse.com? n.pag.)[12] The East German?s joined in the use of performance-enhancing drugs early on as well. ?In 1968 East Germany?s chief medical officer submitted a report to the government recommending the total and collective administration of steroids to all East German athletes? (?Steroid Abuse in Sports- Steroid Abuse.com? n.pag.). In the twenty years preceding this recommendation, Eastern Germany dominated nearly every international sporting competition. The East German drug use was yet another effort to prove their own superiority over the West, just as the Soviets had done just a few years earlier. Many East-German athletes were told that they were taking vitamins, rather than steroids. So, not only was the East German government practicing the use of unfair drugs, but they were also lying to their own athletes and jeopardizing the long-term health of the individuals. Since then, as more drugs have been developed, drug tests and methods for testing have also expanded (Benagh n.pag.).[13] In recent years, many American athletes have been accused and have tested positively for drug use. This kind of cheating is highly unethical and defies the Olympic code of fair play and good sportsmanship. ...read more.


Web. 08 Nov. 2012. <http://www.olympic.org/ancient-olympic-games?tab=History>. [8] Guttmann, Allen. The Olympics, a history of the modern games. Urbana [Ill.: University of Illinois P, 1992. [9] Rosellini, Lynn. "The Sports Factories." SIRS. SIRS, 17 Feb. 1992. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. <http://sks.sirs.com/cgi-bin/hst-article-display?id=SCO0649H-0-2799&artno=0000006878&type=ART&shfilter=U&key=&title=The%20Sports%20Factories&res=Y&ren=N&gov=Y&lnk=N&ic=N>. Published on February 17, 1992, Lynn Rosellini?s article ?Sports Factories? describes Soviet sports camps and their intentions. Rosellini is a senior writer for U.S. News and World Report and typically writes about controversial topics such as sports and entertainment. (The purpose of this article is to describe how the Soviets ran their early sport system and more importantly, what the system evolved to. ?Sports Factories? highlighted the unethical training system that the U.S.S.R. used and the lives of the athletes involved. This article is of great value to anyone researching Olympic history and more specifically, threats to the original Olympic ideals. The examples of athletes involved in this sporting society and their stories of steroid usage also proved to be helpful. A limitation to this source is that it is biased towards the Soviet sports camps, because an American wrote it. [10] Chidlovski, Arthur. "Lift Up." Review of Disqualifications in Weightlifting at the Olympics. History of Olympic Weightlifting, n.d. Web. 19 Oct. 2012. <http://www.chidlovski.net/liftup/l_disqualifications_olympics.asp>. [11] Sterngass, Jon. Steroids. New York: Marshall Cavendish Benchmark, 2011. Print. [12] "Steroid Abuse in Sports - Steroid Abuse.com." Steroid Abuse in Sports - Steroid Abuse.com. Association Against Steroid Abuse, n.d. Web. 12 Oct. 2012. <http://www.steroidabuse.com/steroid-abuse-in-sports.html>. [13] Benagh, Jim. "Olympic Games." Scholastic Teachers. Scholastic, n.d. Web. 10 Nov. 2012. <http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/article/olympic-games>. [14] "OLYMPIC GAMES." OLYMPIC GAMES. Foundation of the Hellenic World, n.d. Web. 10 Nov. 2012. <http://www.fhw.gr/olympics/ancient/en/204.html>. http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2008/05/05/v-print/35879/at-olympics-drug-testers-and-athletes.html [15] Whooley, Declan. "Health News." Ben Johnson: Olympic glory and drug disgrace. 10 Apr. 2012. Joe.ie. 13 Oct. 2012 <http://www.joe.ie/health-fitness/health-news/ben-johnson-olympic-glory-and-drug-disgrace-0028961-1>. [16] Mulero, Ed. "5 Athletes Caught Using Steroids." Mademan RSS. Made Man, 21 Oct. 2010. Web. 15 Oct. 2012. <http://www.mademan.com/mm/5-athletes-caught-using-steroids.html>. [17] Wedekind, Jennifer, Robert Weissman, and Ben DeGrasse. The Commercial Games. Rep. N.p., Aug. 2008. Web. 15 Oct. 2012. <http://www.multinationalmonitor.org/2008olympics/TheCommercialGames.pdf)>. [18] "Is the Olympic Ideal Being Crushed by Sponsorship?" BBC News. BBC, 24 Sept. 2000. Web. 10 Nov. 2012. <http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/talking_point/930391.stm>. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Contemporary Studies section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Contemporary Studies essays


    Whole-part-whole method is an approach that involves teaching the whole skill first and allowing the performer to practise it. One of the parts is then isolated, taught and practised, and when this has been effectively learnt the whole is practised again.

  2. Should American student athletes be paid? One side of the argument is the acceptance ...

    I'm serious. A football team needs a 10-man education coaching staff that is totally independent of the football staff and just as powerful. The education staff should report to the school president, not the athletics director.

  1. The use of illegal Steroids in baseball has single handily degraded and disgraced the ...

    I think these types of drugs should play no role in athletics at any level, and I fully support Senator Mitchell's conclusions that Steroids have no place in baseball. However, I take great issue with the report's allegation that I used these substances.

  2. Barry Bonds and Steroid Abuse by Athletes.

    Barry Bonds then followed in the footsteps of his father and godfather by joining the San Francisco Giants in 1993. Barry remained a Giant for another fourteen seasons, earning countless awards and creating new records; Bonds was at an all-time career high.

  1. Media Bias on Steroids. A great example of media influence is the book ...

    A great example of media influence is the book written about steroid use in baseball. The book is titled Game of Shadows. This non-fiction book was written by two reporters from the San Francisco Chronicle. In the book they allege extensive steroid use by Barry Bonds.

  2. Talent ID report

    when they grow and mature, and if training is done before this it can have detrimental effects. Training to compete This is the third stage, which is aimed for 16-18 (men), 15-17 (women). This stage is a progression from the previous stage.

  1. Voluntary Sports Clubs

    Social Secretary The social secretary organises and handles the personal details of clients; they are very similar to a personal assistant. This person will require strong communication skills because they will be communicating with people a lot and basic computer literacy because all there work is based on the computer.

  2. Safeguarding Children - Dangers of Abuse and Legislation

    Physical abuse occurs when people physically hit, shake or in some way hurt or injure children or failing to prevent these injuries from happening. Physical abuse includes hitting, shaking, kicking, punching, scalding, suffocating and other ways of inflicting pain or injury to a child.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work