The Symposium

    Sport as a credible brand is in crisis. This sentiment was reinforced by recent revelations of the high doping prevalence at the very elite level of sport. In our time, the frightening possibility exists that limits of sport performance may be determined more by interventions engineered towards faster acting muscles and more oxygen transport, rather than commitment to training and the innate endowment of the athlete. 

    Doping threatens to eliminate what sport is all about, i.e. the joy of athletic competition, the glorification of human effort and the embodiment of the Olympic ethos. It is clear that anti-doping today is nowhere near as effective as stakeholders in sport and the public at large desire (e.g., the fact that only a small minority of the frequently tested elite athletes among the numerous doping scandals were caught through a positive drug), yet it makes little sense to start afresh, especially given recent signs of progress.

    What is needed is an evolution of sport rather than a revolution, building on the successes of a fairly young agency (WADA was established in 1999) but with substantial modernization to reflect cultural, economic, and social changes. This evolution of sport requires “way out of the box” thinking. A solution is needed that encompasses a holistic anti-doping approach with input from all major disciplines, stakeholders, sponsors and interested industry.

    With this challenge in mind, international opinion leaders in anti-doping and Olympic sport have been invited to discuss the issue. This unique Symposium is purposely held at ancient Olympia, a place with a very special symbolism, and is indented to serve as an important venue in order to demonstrate that becoming an Olympic athlete is in fact possible without doping. The additional aim of the symposium is to promote Olympism in our society.

     

    © 2019 International Olympia Symposium - Becoming an Olympic athlete without doping A holistic approach