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The Use of Anabolic Steroids

The Use of Anabolic Steroids

During the past decade, anabolic steroid abuse became a national

concern. These drugs are used illicitly by weight lifters, body builders, long

distance runners, cyclists, and others who claim that these drugs give them a

competitive advantage and/or improve their physical appearance. Overall

youth steroid use remains alarmingly high. According to the 1999 Monitoring

the Future Study, the percentage of eighth, tenth, and twelfth graders who

reported using steroids at least once in their lives has increased steadily over

the past four years (an average of 1.8 percent in 1996, 2.1 percent in 1997,

2.3 percent in 1998, and 2.8 percent in 1999).

Concerns over a growing illicit market and prevalence of abuse

combined with the possibility of harmful longterm effects of steroid use led

Congress in 1991 to place anabolic steroids into Schedule III of the

Controlled Substances Act (CSA). The CSA defines anabolic steroids as any

drug or hormonal substance chemically and pharmacologically related to

testosterone (other than estrogens, progestins, and corticosteroids) that

promotes muscle growth. Most illicit anabolic steroids are sold at gyms,

competitions, and through mail operations. For the most part, these

substances are smuggled into this country. Those commonly encountered on

the illicit market include: boldenone (Equipoise), ethlestrenol (Maxibolin),

fluxoymesterone (Halotestin), methandriol, methandrostenolone (Dianabol),

methyltestosterone, nandrolone (Durabolin, DecaDurabolin), oxandrolone

(Anavar), oxymetholone (Anadrol), stanozolol (Winstrol), testosterone, and

trenbolone (Finajet). In addition, a number of …

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…Lifetime” or “ever used” refers to use at least once during a respondent’s

lifetime. “Past year” refers to an individual’s drug use at least once during the

year preceding their response to the survey. “Past month” refers to an

individual’s drug use at least once during the month preceding their response

to the survey.

Anabolic steroids are artificial versions of a hormone that’s in all of us —

testosterone. (That’s right, testosterone is in girls as well as guys.)

Testosterone not only brings out male sexual traits, it also causes muscles to


Some people take anabolic steroid pills or injections to try to build muscle

faster. (“Anabolic” means growing or building.)

But these steroids also have other effects. They can cause changes in the

brain and body that increase risks for illness and they may affect moods.

Physical, Mental, and Social Benefits of Playing Sports

Sports, a very popular past time today, have been around since ancient times. Greek Olympic Games featured events from chariot races, javelin throws, to wrestling. In addition, a game similar to soccer was played in China by the second century BC. In England, a violent rugby type game was even played to settle feuds between villages. With the development of the industrial revolution and the creation of the first public schools, sports decreased in violence and were played more recreationally and constructively. Basketball was invented to help the youth in New England spend their energy in the winter months. Since the early 1900’s sports have been a key experience in the United States (“History of Sports”). I have played sports for many years, and the experience has helped me grow significantly as an individual.

The benefits of sports range from physical, mental, and social. Exercise keeps people fit, develops healthy muscle tone, and reduces heart and lung problems (Oak, Manali). Sports studies have shown that “youth are motivated and engaged in ways that do not happen regularly in any other parts of their lives. Their experience of sports stands out from nearly all other activities, including socializing and schoolwork, in providing enjoyment where they are exerting concerted effort toward a goal” (Larson, Reed, and Sean Seepersad). People who play sports bond over a common interest. This opens up children to meeting new kids and socializing with many more. In Kindergarten, I played baseball. Even though I did not truly understand all the mechanics of the game, I met new friends and began to develop motor skills. This was very useful starting at an early age and pushed me to stay active throughout my life.

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…emier. EBSCO. Web. 27 Oct. 2011.

Hatzigeorgiadis, Antonis, and Stuart J. H. Biddle. “Negative Self-Talk During Sport Performance: Relationships with Pre-Competition Anxiety and Goal-Performance Discrepancies.” Journal of Sport Behavior 31.3 (2008): 237-253. Academic Search Premier. EBSCO. Web. 27 Oct. 2011.

“History of Sports.” History of Sports. Web. 1 Nov. 2011.

Larson, Reed, and Sean Seepersad. “Adolescents’ Leisure Time in The United States: Partying, Sports, And the American Experiment.” New Directions for Child

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