Time for you to have your say…please

19 August 2013 Comments 6

During the summer months, we’ve been working on a massive project that I truly want every single person who reads this blog to be involved in. Don’t worry, it doesn’t end with you buying something, but it does provide you with a voice in a massive international survey we’ve undertaken on the health of world sport. I’m convinced it will interest every sports-mad person who cares passionately about the future of sport and equally convinced the results will give us all something to discuss on a worldwide scale.

Regular readers will know by now that I have a passion for fair and clean sport. The SKINS brand reflects those values too, not because they’re mine but because they are the fundamental principles that all of us associated with SKINS genuinely believe in. In fact, we believe that the vast majority of sports fans believe in them too but the sad fact is that sometimes the majority can be treated like the minority when blazer-wearers get involved.

I’m sure we’ve all felt it at some point or other. There can be millions of sports fans shouting the same message, but if for some political or self-serving reason the blokes in blazers don’t agree, they pretend they’re deaf or we’re not shouting loud enough. As sports fans, we’re continually fed a diet of meaningless rhetoric that is intended to keep us off their backs, retain their cosy status quo and allow them to carry on sitting in their ivory towers.

Well sometime ago, I decided I’d had enough. I checked with the staff at SKINS and it seems they agreed. The recent events around doping, corruption cheating and mismanagement on a global scale has finally got us to a point where we’re going to talk about it by doing what the administrators don’t – listening to you.

So this is the deal. We’ve set up an independent survey to determine what sports fans, competitors and even administrators (yes, really) think about the state of world sport and I’d love you to add your thoughts.

Is enough being done to eradicate doping?
Should more money be ploughed into projects and initiatives that would REALLY make a difference?
Is the current strategy of “test test test” the best way to fight this problem?
If your favourite team was found guilty of cheating by using PED’s, would you be tempted to cancel your season ticket, membership or subscription?
Or perhaps you actually don’t care what consenting athletes put into their bodies to enhance their performance as long as you see a decent spectacle?
In simple terms, do you actually care what happens away from the playing field, track or pitch?

This survey, which is being conducted by an independent party, is going to shape some really exciting stuff we’re planning at SKINS and I’d genuinely love you to be part of it. Completion only takes a couple of minutes and we’ll be sharing the results as soon as we’re able after next Sunday’s closing date, August 25th.

As a further taster, here’s a sneak preview of one of the actual statements you’ll be asked to consider.

“Athletes who take illegal performance enhancing drugs ruin the fairness of competition”

You get to choose one of five options ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree and those regulars amongst you will undoubtedly know what my answer to this one would be!

But the thing is, we want to hear your answers. I’m looking forward to reading the full results and sharing them with you as soon as we can. It really will make a difference if you complete the survey and it will enhance the accuracy of results we’re looking to use in a far-reaching project that we can share with you all very shortly.

Thanks. Here’s the link:

6 comments on "Time for you to have your say…please"

  1. Matt on 19 August 2013

    PEDs do make it an unfair playing field. However, it doesn’t make anyone a better player. They could be stronger than the rest but for instance, the strongest player in baseball won’t be any better of a hotter if they still can’t connect with the ball. Also the increased muscle mass will make them less flexible and therefore hinder their ability to field or swing. That all being said, it can be a booster for those already skilled at a certain skill. Similar to blood doping for runners, it could make you cardiovascular ability better however it is something has to change the natural composition of how your body reacts so its not instantaneous.

    In short, it does effect the game, however it seems that it is more detrimental to the individual using the forbidden tactics to better there game. Anyone that understands health and fitness knows that these remedies are like crash diets, may works great but as a lifestyle, all it does is hurt the individual in the end.

  2. Lars Finanger on 19 August 2013

    A wise friend of mine once posed this excellent question which I believe can help define an individual’s approach to sporting competition.

    “What is the definition of sport?”

    By considering and thoughtfully answering that question, it can help define whether PED’s are an acceptable part of sport.

    Is sport competition defined by athletes competing against one another equipped by what they have naturally cultivated through natural ability, training, hard work, mental tenacity, and even scientific advancements, etc or is it defined by a win-at-all-costs mentality?

    Personally, I know how I’ve defined sport in my life and where I’ve drawn the line.

    • Jaimie Fuller SKINS Chairman on 19 August 2013

      C’mon Lars, don’t tease us. You know where you draw the line, so where is it?
      I’m keen to hear your point of view. No wrong answers mate…

  3. ben on 20 August 2013

    Drug in sports became a big deal. Drugs have been used for a very long time to enhance performance, kill the pain. They invented drug testing to control sports. Some of the sports were damaged by the doping accusations. They found a way to erase the victories of the Tour de France. Most of the sports use products. Any sport magazine is promoting lines of product for more energy, more muscles, more endurance. I believe in doping control at the race. I do not agree on taking titles and reputation away from an athlete years after it happened when he went through the same controls at the time of racing and the results were negative.

  4. Bob Kersenbrock on 20 August 2013

    Jaime….first of all i applaude all of your efforts in fighting PED in sports. PED’s are so contrary to the essence of sport……clean, fair competition.

    The sports leagues need to take a firm stand on PED use and ban anyone testing positive for a meaningful timeframe with no compensation. Take the money out of the equation and the entire mindset will change.

    Again thanks for your stand on the issue and organizing like minded people…….bob

  5. Mike on 21 August 2013

    Jamie : I admire the stand you are taking, well done.

    But boy! was that questionairre hard to answer.

    Several fundamental reasons.

    TAKE – Some questions too coarse.
    “Do I support life time bans ”
    For me that is impossible to answer – There was no option to say “no for a first offence” – only an unconditional “no” which is way different. Because drug testing is not perfect, and everyone should have one chance at redemption, even Armstrong. Dwain Chambers setting a near world record at 60m indoor after going clean is an inspiration, and that is a massive story to tell youngsters. It would not have happened with a lifetime ban – and the sport should be using stories like that.

    In that case, I have at least some sympathy for Dwain. He was unlucky to be talented enough to be invited to join the worlds top sprint group only to find they were part of Balco and they were who were beating him in races. If he had not been as successful or luckier not to meet them, he might never have been tempted, and won anyway. Who you are lucky or unlucky to meet matters.

    I do think two or more strikes should be out.

    A lot of questions had dislike halves.

    ” Do media overemphasize sport (I think is true – it is all they talk about, not sport) – it is not a big issue” (I think is false) How can I give a single answer- to the two which are different?

    ” which is the dirties sport – which is likely to have a big scandal. ” Two completely separate questions – if not three. The scandals come from sports that test and bust drugs rings – not necessarily dirtiest ones and some are dirtier at grassroots level (bodybuilding) than they probably are at competition level because of testing.

    In short – avoid double barrel questions, and ask more about what you think should be done to offenders.

    But overall Jamie – well done! Anyone but McQuaid would be an improvement at UCI, so UCI begins to cooperate not confront the other voices in cycling.