Essay on Testosterone in Sports

1727 Words Feb 16th, 2013 7 Pages
Talent is an accident of genes - and a responsibility. –Alan Rickman
It has been long debated who or what we should attribute our athleticism to. Is athleticism a product of hard work or a result of athletic parents who passed along athletic genes? Should we attribute athleticism to hard work or science? People generally fall into one of the two categories when explaining athleticism. Athletes are always looking for a competitive advantage in sports. Many athletes have turned to steroids and testosterone boosters to excel performance. Substance users have been labeled cheaters because they have an unfair advantage. Does having a naturally high testosterone level give an athlete a fair advantage? The article I chose, “Time to
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The problem arises in “intersex” conditions when, people with XX chromosomes look and run like men, and XY people who look and run like women. When a genetic male is born with X and Y chromosomes, but suffers from androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS), his body doesn’t produce as much or respond to testosterone like a normal male. This type of person could look like a man with a penis or could look like a woman with a vagina and externally look female. The XY athlete suffering from AIS with a male appearance would be at an extreme athletic disadvantage when competing against other men. On the other hand, an XY athlete with AIS that has a female external appearance would be at an advantage when competing with other women. Athletes with AIS and XY chromosomes that appear female produce and use more testosterone than the average female, thus giving them an athletic advantage (Foddy & Savulescu, 2010, p.1185).
The second problem exists when females are born with a genetic condition known as congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH). CAH creates women with XX chromosomes, but produce abnormally high levels of testosterone. The high levels of testosterone can create an individual with a female appearance and organs that has increased testosterone or an individual with a male appearance and organs that has a lower

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