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!
Sudden cardiac death is a spectre that looms over sport. When apparently healthy and fit athletes die during sport, it triggers questions and grief. The latest such case is that of Michael Goolaerts, a Belgian pro-cyclist who died during the 2018 Paris-Roubaix. This video provides an overview of the prevalence, possible causes, and challenges facing prevention.
The latest four minute mull explores pacing strategies, physiology and fatigue. In so doing, I offer a theory for the limits to human performance existing at the point where the "reserve" that physiology maintains is no more, the endspurt disappears, and humans are at the limits of what is physiologically possible.
UKAD sent a scathing letter to British Cycling, outlining a series of improper and sub standard processes and governance issues in the aftermath of their Jiffy Bag Investigation. The letter shatters the illusion of Marginal gains by the most professional, well run team in cycling, while the inaction by UKAD despite all the problems reveals the impotence of anti-doping bodies.
Should TUEs be banned? The Therapeutic Use Exemption exists to solve a tricky challenge for elite athletes, allowing them to compete despite chronic or acute medical problems. But it's become clear that the system is often abused, leading to a loss of trust in the system. In this four minute mull, I look at that debate, offering perspectives from both sides, and here, share some thoughts around four things I think should change to restore the TUE integrity.
The latest four minute mull is here, and it's back to the subject of concussion. It was topical, because another controversy in the NFL with Cam Newton pushed the issue of concussion management into the news. Rugby has a history with concussion and this post examines that, and explains how policy changes that absorbed education and knowledge of concussion helped drive positive changes, even though the incidence of concussion increased as a result.
In this episode of #thefourminutemull, I address the player welfare issue facing rugby. Last year, some controversy erupted when a player was cited for a dangerous tackle, leading some to say the sport was going soft. This "soft vs tough" argument is a cultural challenge rugby needs to address, and I talk here about seeking that compromise for the sake of the players and the sport.
This is episode 1 of the Four Minute Mull, my hopefully weekly attempt at adding insight and thoughts to the world of sport. In this prologue episode, I look ahead to 2018, where the two big global sporting events will put sport's lack of integrity squarely in the spotlight, and to some of the other stories we're likely to cover this year, ranging from Froome's salbutamol case to intersex athletes in athletics.