Technology in Sport – Is it cheating?

Today I have found an interesting question raised by Professor Steve Haake. He poses the question whether technology in sports can be considered as cheating.

He explains that there are different factors that influence the score of an athlete. Globalization used to have a great impact. By this we mean: population growth, nutrition, coaching, professionalization,… These factors have spread around the globe, when one coach finds new techniques they are been copied by other coaches in no time. In our times with internet and camera’s everywhere, it is hard to do something revolutionary without everyone noticing.

With this in mind one can notice that sport results are getting closer to a limit. A limit of what is “humanly possible”. For example I think it is safe to say that people will never be able to run a marathon in 5minutes. So the future for sports isn’t looking bright if we look at it from this perspective. National/world records will become scarce. This could not only become demotivating for the athletes but also pretty boring for the spectators.

Then what about technology? It is no secret that technology enhances sport performance. But whether or not it is considered cheating all depends on what the rules are. Rules are not as static as you might think. They need to evolve together with the new technologies. Acceptance the technology depends for example on whether or not the technology is accessible for everyone equally.

So is technology cheating ? In my opinion not. As long as the rules are adapted. There needs to be a balance between keeping the sport interesting and challenging and at the same time give all the competitors a fair chance. In some way you could say that technology will determine the future of sports.


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