Be it doping in sport, hot topics like Caster Semenya or Oscar Pistorius, or the dehydration myth, we try to translate the science behind sports and sports performance. Consider a donation if you like what you see here!
In 2015, the Court of Arbitration set aside an IAAF policy that required female athletes to have a Testosterone level below a cut-off threshold. Now, 2 years later, with the IAAF appeal imminent, new evidence has emerged, with possible implications for athletes like Caster Semenya. But will the IAAF's new evidence be enough. Here's a look at some issues.
Where do we go next? Now that Eliud Kipchoge has taken us to the brink of a sub-2 hour marathon, have the boundaries of human endurance been recalibrated? Can we expect a 1:59 soon? Or did the Nike staged event simply move some of the boundaries aside? This piece looks at potential benefits, and asks whether we should expect to see a speeding up, or a slowing down, in the foreseeable future?
Eliud Kipchoge has run a marathon in 2:00:25, coming within sight of breaking the 2-hour barrier. How did he do it, and what might we expect in future? This post analyzes the splits, the tactics and the prospects for the 1:59:59 in the future.
A proposal to recalibrate the track and field world records by removing all records set prior to 2005 has caused considerable controversy. I offer some views on the proposal, and explain why the step is probably necessary, but should not be 'abused' as a sign of a new generation.
The Nike-Breaking 2 attempt will happen in Monza this weekend. I don't think a sub-2 is possible, but what will be fascinating is to see a) how they go about pacing the attempt, and what happens if it starts to fall away; and b) what the collective advantage is of all the tactics employed. I predict 2:01:55 at best, a DNF is also a real possibility. More thoughts here.
An explosive new investigative report has revealed that numerous athletes have tested positive when their samples from Beijing 2008 were retested. They include Jamaican male sprinters, so dominant in those Games. The IOC and WADA however did not act, suggesting the cases are all contamination, not worthy of pursuing. How viable is this, and what does it mean for already bottomed-out anti-doping credibility?
Kenenisa Bekele kicks off the 2017 Marathon season in Dubai, with what is a potential world record. It's the year of the "Breaking-2" after Nike's announcement last December. This article is an expanded version of one I wrote for an SA Newspaper on Jan 15th, 2017
Nike's announcement that they're backing three top marathoners to break the 2 hour marathon barrier in Spring 2017, is the latest installment in the sub-2 hype. Relevance and legitimacy aside, what would it take, product and course wise, to achieve? I look at shoes and downhill running to illustrate the concept of physiological barriers and how they might be shifted.
Earlier this year, ultra-marathon runner Rob Young was accused of cheating during his attempt to break the TransAmerica record. His sponsor, Skins, commissioned an independent investigation, which Roger Pielke and I completed and which was published yesterday. This post presents the data portion of our report, confirming that Young did in fact, travel in a vehicle for large periods.