Athletes can use our understanding of respiration to improve performance through the use of altitude training but this is not available to all. Should this be banned?
Altitude training is very good for the body and preparing for big sporting events such as running, swimming, and cycling. Altitude (or hypoxic) training is when athletes who need a high endurance capacity train at high altitudes of 1500-3000 m to improve oxygen delivery and utilization around the body because of a hypoxia induced increase of the red blood cell volume and adaptations at the muscular level.
The way that it works is quite simple: Since there is such a shortage of oxygen, your body reacts to shortage of oxygen in the atmosphere which essentially enhances the ability to move the oxygen around the body.
Usain Bolt, the fastest runner on earth, can beat his own record just by training at an altitude of 999 meters with a tailwind which is not even the highest of heights you can train at. Scientists are sure about how different environmental conditions affect sports performance even to a great extent. So not only does altitude training help enhance sporting abilities but so does the weather.
However, there is a limit to the level of adaptation, anything above above 8,000 metres, which is around 26,000 ft, is known as the “death zone”, because this is where it is generally believed that no human body can properly function. Although 3000 meters is not as high as this, it could still affect the body because the human will not bare in mind the fact that they have a lack in oxygen. This leads to the human that is training, to lose oxygen quicker.
In my opinion, based on my research, I think that Altitude training shoulder be open to everyone to do as long as the athelete knows what they are doing on the mountain because there are a lot of potential hazards that are involved when it comes to training at such heights. For example, not knowing your limits for your body, and secondly, if the athlete goes to high. This can be dangerous because rather than it benefiting you, it will actually damage you since it is such a drastic change for the body to adjust to.
Not all bodies are genetically the same and different bodies can handle different atmospheres. One of which is being able to train at heights. However if there is a marathon coming up and someone can not improve their skill by altitude training, could lead to the race being unfair since some of the competitors can train at an altitude but others can not. However this is unfair for both competitors.
The reason why I think that altitude training shoulder not be banned is because it is not the only way to train and become a better athlete. Altitude training is just something someone may prefer to do. Besides this, there are many different, more natural alternatives that can make you a better athlete.
“Breaking Your Own Record.” Eurekalert, 2 Aug. 2012, www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-08/f-sf-ubc080212.php.
Whitlock, Dylan. “Altitude Training.” Sportluxe, 2 Nov. 2016, sporteluxe.com/altitude-training/+.