Use of Performance Enhancing Drugs is rife in nearly any competitive sport, do we think BJJ is, or should be any different?
Its well documented that top level BJJ competitors have been caught doping, some even owning up to their misconduct. But how does the BJJ community really feel about it? Do we care? Should we care?
This is a guest article that comes from Breakinggrips.com
Despite the large number of accusations, the excitement for the match did not seem to wane which left me with the question; if so many people are convinced that Palhares is doping, then why support such an event?
Despite these failed tests all these the athletes returned to competition will little to no comment on their reputation or integrity as an athlete. This seems to suggest that the opinion of the BJJ community, when it comes to doping, is one of indifference.
Watch either of these two films to see how widespread PEDs are in mainstream sports
The issue of doping is something that many people believe is also prevalent at amateur level. Talk to any serious amateur competitor and they will give you examples and anecdotes of doping at every level including in the masters divisions.
In a sport where technique and respect are emphasized so much, it seems sad that so many people look to illegal supplements to give them an edge over their opponents. Just because effective testing is currently not possible does not mean that grapplers should be free to use illegal substances without consequences. The BJJ community as a whole has a responsibility to acknowledge the issue and clearly state an intent to be a clean sport.
The risk of turning a blind eye is that the sport will become tarnished and known as sport for cheaters. This is something that will discourage parents from signing up their kids and will also discourage normal people from competing. The fact that the sport is still in its infancy makes this risk even bigger.