Blood Doping

Athletes can use our understanding of respiration to improve performance through blood doping. Should this be banned?

Blood Doping is a technique used to increase an individual’s oxygen carrying red blood cells and improve athletic performance. It has direct impact on the VO2max, the measure of a person’s aerobic capacity. During exercise, the body undergoes aerobic respiration to provide sufficient delivery of oxygen to the muscles for producing energy. Red blood cells or the hormone erythropoietin are injected and an increase in red blood cells allows muscles to work longer and harder without cramping. It boosts the body’s ability to bring more oxygen to muscles, avoiding oxygen shortages that lead to muscle fatigue in the process of anaerobic respiration. Blood doping is banned by many professional sports organizations, such as the International Olmpics Committee, but isn’t entirely banned. Endurance athletes, cyclists and many professional athletes practice blood doping in order to gain a competitive edge in their field.

Most common methods for blood doping is injections of erythropoietin, injections with synthetic chemicals that can carry oxygen and blood transfusions. However these methods of blood doping can lead to various health issues.

Injections of erythropoietin (EPO)

The misuse of this medicine or hormone that promotes formation of red blood cells, produced by the kidney, can create great health risks. EPO thickens the blood and can lead to an increased risk of diseases such as heart disease, stroke and pulmonary embolism.

Synthetic oxygen carriers

Synthetic oxygen carriers, which are chemicals that have the ability to carry oxygen, appear useful for emergency therapeutic purposes when human blood is not available and the risk of blood infection is high or when there is not enough time to properly cross-match donated blood with a recipient. The misuse for dropping purposes carries the risk of cardiovascular disease with various side effects like strokes.

Blood Transfusions

In an autologous transfusion, the transfusion of a person’s blood is stored for future use and in a homologous transfusion, a person uses the blood of someone else with the same blood type. However, in either form, the blood from another person may have a virus and using one’s own blood carries risks if the blood is not handled correctly or stored properly. There may be an unnatural increase in red blood cell levels which raises the risk of heart attack, stroke and pulmonary embolism.


In recent years, as athletes are searching for ways to elevate their performance and evade detection, a solution to this are athlete biological passports – recording the biological traits of of an athlete that indirectly reveal the effects of doping through tests done at regular intervals. The passport allows investigators to spot out any deviations from the athlete’s test-established norm that may result from doping. The drawback however is that cautious athletes who perform blood doping may remain difficult to detect, as according to Michael Ashenden, a sports scientist, says that athletes can be involved in small amounts of blood doping, without abnormal changes in the blood variables, monitored by the passport.

In my opinion, a ban on blood doping, won’t work unless WADA (the World Anti-Doping Agency) can detect the peformance-enhancing substances in the athlete’s body, which is becoming harder and harder as athletes are discovering new ways to cheat. I believe that the biological passport is a great tool with possibilities of limiting the doping practices, in the current professional sporting field, by keeping track of records of the resulting changes in the athlete’s bodies, and it could reduce the health risks caused by blood doping significantly.


Works Cited:

“Blood Doping.” WebMD, WebMD,

Haff, Greg. “The Science of Doping and How Cheating Athletes Pass Drug Tests.” The Conversation, The Conversation, 1 May 2018,

Ingle, Sean. “’Disgraced’ IAAF Has Failed Its Athletes, Say Embattled Anti-Doping Scientists.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 28 Nov. 2015,

Owens, Jessica. “Do Muscles Use Aerobic or Anaerobic Respiration?”, 5 Apr. 2018,

Rathi, Akshat. “This Simple Solution Might Stop Doping in Sports Once and for All.” Quartz, Quartz, 9 Nov. 2015,

Model United Nations: GCD Inter-cultural Communication in YIS

As a student going to an international school, I experience many activities that make me an intercultural person, escpecially by enhancing my language abilities to help communicate with people from around the globe. I talk to students around me, who are from different cultures and nationalities. This challenges my linguistic and cultural barriers, however I overcome these barriers by interacting with the students in classes and being able to work effectively together through a way of communication we have in common such as using English.

Right now I am on the path of extending my relationships between people around me and I have fun communicating with students for personal aspects and academic aspects, in and out of school. I feel close to many of the people, through communication and I can feel more engaged in many discussions/conversations.

A few months ago, I attended a Model United Nations conference at K. International School Tokyo, as part of the MUN group, an extra-curricular activity at my school. This was a conference to see how United Nations commitees actually worked and to practice various skills involving debating and speaking skills. At the conference, there were students from other schools in Tokyo with many nationalities and students had to roleplay among their allocated countries. I met students of different nationalities and had a fruitful debate on the topic of “nuclear weapons” and “mars colonization” with them. I participated in the roleplay as the delegate of Somalia. The conference gave me the oppurtunity to share my ideas and interact with the students who had come from different cultures and also who were roleplaying different countries. I learned so much about the ways people can express their cultures in a debate, even if it is not their actual, and be open-minded with their factual thoughts. I was very engaged in the debate and was able to speak with students, coming up with speeches and arguments for others to add on or correct their ideas, for example to clarify what certain actions or solutions would be good for the prohibition of nuclear weapons, in the first debate. I was pleased to participate in this conference as I was able to interact with students of different cultures and communicate naturally with othes.

After the conference, it became clear to me that linguistic and cultural barriers can be broken. My expectation was to communicate frequently with international students around me. I believe that spending most of the time with international students, who come from different nationalities, helps me to become more confident in using my communication skills as to have interactions with students to share ideas and the MUN conference was a great example. My strength is also interpreting certain knowledge and helping others, which has been connected to many of activities when demonstrating skills to communicate with others.

In the future, I would want to participate in a similar activity and as a bilingual student, being able to speak both Japanese and English, I wish to interact with international students living in Japan. When speaking to others I need to be a better listener and construct a detailed discussion depending on the situation, if it’s in an educational atmosphere in class or a fun and friendly atmosphere with my peers. I now understand the meaning of being bilingual in an international community, which helps to communicate and share memorable experiences with people of different cultural backgrounds, by overcoming linguistic barriers.

Tennis- Personal Goal- GCD Reflection

I started playing tennis when I was 9 years old and started with no experience of playing tennis whatsoever. I have been attending tennis lessons and practices for once or twice a week to continue on improving my skills and to challenge myself in sports.

In past practices I have given myself a goal in tennis that will help me extend further with what I’m doing and to set a particular goal that will maximize my strengths. I set goals such as hittting 30 shots in a row from the backline, have more than 20 serves go in the court and win against the coach 5 times. I think that goals with specific numbers can be good to approch towards because once you accomplish it, then you can still increase the number and improve better.

Tennis is a very competetive and hard-working sport and it requires full energy and concentration to stay in the game. I run many laps on the court before actual practice to get my feetowrk ready and play some strokes with my classmates on court, which is a routine. When I was younger, I used to have no routines and goals which made it harder for me to be aware of what to imrove and train during practices because you have nothing reach up on.

I think that having a personal goal is important because it helps you achieve something in order to become more independant and skillful in any subject or aspect in life. I would work hard and practice more so that things won’t be boring. Personal goals may reflect on who you are as a person and what may interest you. For me I like playing tennis because there is always something to motivate you and achieve high rankings in tournaments or win against a strong tournament. A personal goal personally may be hard and challenging but it is important to extend on what you’re doing.

Kindergarten Visit Refelction

Today we visited a kindergarten classroom and each of us were assigned with a kid. My partner was a girl was named Rain and I read books as well as played some fun games.

I was first confused and unsure of how I could start off communicating with her, but she introduced herself to me and was enthusiastic for the acivities. I read a book about baking recipes and I was pretty commucative as I taught her what some words meant and asked for her opinions on the pictures and characters. This is when I thought that by communicating with each other, you can have a closer relationship and you get less nervous as you talk about things.

I was also caring as I followed what she wanted to do and I didn’t disagree on her actions and thoughts. When she brought a japanese game called “Ohajiki”, a game using marbles, I didn’t know how to play it really well. She taught me how to play it and although it was still hard to understand, I wanted her to have fun with the marbles, so I decided to make rainbow marbles together and she liked it a lot.

I was also reflective on the days when I was a kindergartener. It was useful to know how kindergarten was like and what experiences I had. This enabled me to relate more things together and lead the activities. The girl was very kind and talkative.  She sat next to me and I remembered how teachers used to read books to me with expression, so I put some expression in my reading to make it more interesting for her and afterall it looked like she had fun.

Being with kindergarteners today helped me learn how to get closer with people you first meet and make it fun for people by talking about things.

Phuket Expedition 2016

Our Phuket expedition was the best and unforgettable trip. We gained lots of experience, helped the people there and actually learned some important things.

The first two days were helping to paint walls and murals, also planting at the Burmese school. We worked hard in groups to make the rooms a place where children can study and have a fun time. It was a challenge to not mess up the red, blue, green, yellow and white paint, but at the end it looked like a masterpiece of artwork because we managed to work as a team. We also gave out our donations to the Burmese children and they seemed so happy with the toys, stationary and clothes they got. I thought that these donations were a trade in culture as we gave them things from Japan and we got to know a little about their lives. I liked remodeling the rooms and making their school experience much exciting.


On the third day of our expedition, we went hiking into a rainforest. We had to take the secondary route becuase the expected route was blocked by a tree and we couldn’t walk through it. The day we went hiking, it was raining and the ground was very muddy. So we had to work as team and challenge ourselves to finish the hike. We had to call out “wait” and “stop” to let the people in front know that something was wrong or they were going to fast. I thought that communication helped us a lot. It was a unforgettabe experience because I remember how the environment in the rainforest was different from where I live right now. The humid conditions and tough trails showed me the importance of thinking carefully of the environment we live in. The next day we also went snorkling. The boat ride to the diving point was a disaster as it took us all down, sea sickness was our biggest enemy. But under the bright blue sea was so beautiful with fish and coral reefs. We went to two spots where the coral reefs were. We discovered that there were healthy coral reefs. But others were damaged becuase of human impacts such as coral mining and pollution. This made us think of the environmental issues that could be improved.


The last days of the expedition were meeting with the SOS children. They amount of children was much more than the Burmese children and there was a variety of ages. We had to teach them Origami, Japanese traditional games like “Darumasangakoronda” which is like “Red light green light” and make wrist bands together. I was responisble in taking care of the children in my game of Duck duck goose and Japanese games. I had to show them how to play it with actions instead of talking so it was hard to actually teach them but with the help of others we were able to play. I learned that even though the things we say and our language isn’t the same with them, we still have something in connection that works afterall. Teaching new things to children was difficult but I got to learn new things myself and maybe the children will surely remember what they have learned once.


The entire week was the best trip that I would never forget and regret. I had a great time doing many activities, having the delightful food from the British International School and a vulnerable experience. This Phuket expedition rose my motivation and awarness of this world and I know this trip has made me grow with the memories of myself. I had a once in a lifetime experience and found similarities and differences in culture that that made me more interested in.


How does memory work?

Definitions of 5 vocabulary terms

Memory: The process of our brain maintaining the information over time.

Neurons: Cells that transmit nerve impulses in the brain

Neurotransmitters: Chemicals that send signals from one nerve cell to another.

Long-term potentiation (LTP): The ability of brain cells to increase the strength between brain cell connections.

Synapses: A small gap of the neuron that carries the signal to the next neron.

Paragraph Description

The functions of a memory isn’t just about experiencing a event in life, make it into a memory and store inside the brain. Neurons communicate with other neurons when they recieve stimulation from same neurotransmitters and the strength of the connections is what tells us about how a memory works. It is said by William Griffith, Ph.D., a cellular neuroscientist and chair of the Department of Neuroscience and Experimental Therapeutics at the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, that LTP, long-term potentiation explains memory a lot since it changes the strength of brain cell connections. If your brain has made a ‘strengthened synaptic contact’ and nerve cells transmitted signal to one another, then a momeory is made. To remember memories is by maintaing the LTP. When your losing strength in your LTP synaptic connections, this could cause cognitive loss and impairment. The decrease in neurons communicating to each other makes the connections weak, which makes it harder to recall memories. Memories can be thought back when you look or smell something as it relates to an event in a past. Behaviours such as addiction can be associated with memory as well because the pathways for addiction are strengthened. But there is more to be researched on how the brain generates, consolidates and retrieves memories.



Nature VS Nurture

The nature vs nurture is a debate on if the behaviours of a person is inherited or learned through the environment and life. I think that nature is what comes from your older generations and what is passed on to you.

As an example from BBC’s research, if you are born from both parents that was an olympic gold medalist runner many times, you might as well be fast having the genes passed on. But nurture comes in and also changes how fast you are. Good athletes train and train to extend their possibilities to get better and environments effect this a lot. there are countries like Kenya and Ethiopia, where there is plenty of high land and you become adapted to that enviornment. This passes on to the next generation and they get better too. Using Eugenics in sports is a big idea of making stronger and powerful people in certain sports.

Another example is a study of twins done by the ‘Lousville Twin Study’. Twins are born at the same time and can look simlilar meaning they are identical. These identical twins can though be different because one gets more nutritions during the reproduction process. But the intelligence and behaviours are within you already, although if you don’t study and the other studies for the whole time, then that’s different. People like Mozart had the smart genes since when he was born and he developed it as he grown.

Research by Cambridge study was to see how people act to adults and gender and if they are stereotypic. When an adult sees a baby girl with a boy’s clothes, they intend to give them a boy’s type of toy. And this is pretty stereotypic as people already think as boy’s should have a truck toy to play and girls with dolls. That image passes on to their children and parents tell them to play with boys with boy toys and girls with girl toys.

Overall our world has lots of both Nature and Nurture aspects which impact the way we think and behave.

Reflection: Final Project

In the past few weeks for art class, we have been working on printmaking. The whole project was about creating a design as well as a pattern of our own to show something interesting.

The first step was to research on different types of patterns and draw them in our sketchbooks. When we had an idea for our final project, we had to start planning. The second step, we had to draw our design we chose and draw them on a piece of lined paper. The design had to be 10 cm (width)× 15 (length). The third step, we had to trace the design on the back of the paper with a 6b or 8b pencil on a window. It was good that the day I traced my design was a sunny day because that helped me see my design more clear and better. The fourth step, we sticked the design on a rubber plate with tape and make the design go on. The fifth step, we started to carve. For my design, I made sure that I carved each spot carefully. When we were done carving, we got paint. The tools and materials we used for this was a brayer, baren, paint palette and of course paint. The brayer was used to spread the paint all over the palette and get the paint on the rubber plate by rolling the brayer on it. The baren was used to softly press the carving palette with paint on a piece of paper (any color). We also mixed colors after we did some of our prints using one color.

From below I’ll be answering these questions in paragraphs.

1. Describe the part of your design that was influenced by another culture. Why did you choose that culture’s motif?

My design I made was influenced by a Hawaiian culture motif. I wanted to include a type of flower that represented the tropicalness of nature in Hawaii. The figures that were a smeicircle shape on the both right and left were tried to be shown as fruits with seeds in it. I chose this culture’s motif because I thought the aspects of it’s culture had a really simple design and I also thought it was easy to show some creativity in a way that makes the print look interesting. Also, I thought that the Hawaiian style of art was unlike other ones from other places and I thought it was a unique traditonal thing to do on my print design.

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2. Describe the most difficult aspect of this project. Why was it so challenging?

I think the most difficult part of this entire project was sticking your design and drawing over on the rubber plate. In this step, what you had to do was to stick your design onto the rubber plate using tape. Then after sticking it, you had to trace your design agian with a 6b or 8b pencil to make the design get transfered on the rubber plate really clear. But for me, this process didn’t work out that well. Sticking my design onto the rubber plate was hard. It was mostly because the tape I chose was a made out of paper and it was not affective on the rubber plate making it kind of hard getting it sticked on. Also, the step where you use a 6b or 8b pencil to trace on the rubber plate was quite hard because I accidently put some of the tape where I had to trace after. Furthermore, the tape was sticky and strong. I had to try to not rip the paper, gently taking off a bit of the tape then tracing it over. I think that was something that I worked out well by myself.

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3. Explain how you solved problems during this printmaking unit.

During this printmaking unit, I think I have sovled lots of problems other than sticking and tracing. First of all when I was carving my design onto my rubber plate, I was having some problems with carving the negative parts. I wasn’t really confident within my carving skills so I asked people around me to give me advice and help me on how I can carve better, not making my design being messed up. Those people I asked helped me and they told me that I didn’t have to carve that deep on the rubber plate. This was helpful because this would’ve taken me much more time and I wouldn’t have finished carving on schedule. Another problem I had was that I put too much paint on the palette in my first try I did. I knew that I put too much paint so I thought I could’ve shared it with other people if they wanted to have some of it. Afterall, I didn’t have to waste the paint and I ended up having to give the paint to my friends. The last problem I had was that I couldn’t really choose what my design should be at the beginning of this unit. I was thinking of many different kinds of designs from many different kinds of cultures. It was difficult for me to create my own design becasue I had lots of ideas up in my head. But I looked and searched up for types of designs on the internet that I had confidence in doing with and if that was what I really wanted to do.

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4. Describe what you have learned this year in art class that will help you in Grades 7 and 8.

Throughout this year, I have increased my level of knowledge towards art. I have learned many things that will definitely help me in 7th and 8th grade. Starting with, I think I have learned how to use paint in a variety of ways. For my painting I did in the second unit, I had to get different colors of paint and put them on my painting. On the yellow backround, I decided to use two paint brushes and just spread them out everywhere. This seemed to work pretty well after and I thought it was a creative idea to do because I thought I was missing something. This made it really affective and it caught the other people’s attention much more. Also, another thing that will help me in 7th and 8th grade will be me having to ask for feedback from other people. I noticed that this whole year, the artworks that I did were helped by my peers. When I ask for them to give me advice, they always give me advice and work out problems with me. The first unit for example, I had a lot of people do that to me. The unit was about creating our portrait drawings and I was struggling if the details on my face really looked similar with how I look for real. So I asked people around me and I aksed them if it was turning out good. The result was even and some people agreed although some people disagreed. The people who disagreed told me how to improve on it and with their help, I could make it much more realistic than before. Now at the moment, I know that it can be a big help for other people to give us feedback and advice so that your artwork can be improved and made to a better one.

Next year for art class (although I will be going away), I will be aiming for new goals and I will be going to make my art skills improved by trying to do my best all the time. I will continue on having to encourage myself to think more creative in making different kinds of artworks. But to be able to these things, I need to first follow the steps and to the instructions told by the teachers.

Math Reflection (the most boring blog post in the world!)

Hello everyone! My name is Tan and I’m a student in 6B. I’m almost going to be in 7th grade. My math teacher is Mr. Fedley and he is from Austrailia. He loves teaching us and is a very nice teacher (I guess…)


In this semester, I have learned lots of fun and interesting things. But I don’t mean it for all the work. We learned are measurements, probability, integers, patterns and algebra and the exam.

This semester, we did a lot of textbook works and taught people math. We did some mathletics and paper worksheets.

I enjoyed doing the textbook works. LOL!! Actually I enjoyed the works he gave us because that made my tests results become better. I also enjoyed asking questions because Mr. Fedley always explains it in a understandable way.

This semester the integers unit was kind of hard because it had a lot of patterns and that is one of my weakness. Also I could’ve done better on the exam because I didn’t expect my marks.

Next year I want to be able to get a full mark for my report card. So I will ask a lot of questions even if Mr. Fedley won’t be there. Which is kind of sad 🙁 I will try to focus harder on algebra because it’s my strength. I hope to see you Mr. Fedley again angain and thank you for teaching us these past years. Have a safe trip!

Un Petit Service Skit

Today in French class, we created our own skits on a topic related to school supplies and not having those shool supplies brought to school. I was in a group with Tsuyoshi and Alex. I was a student who didn’t lend Tsuyoshi (the boy who forgets his stuff) because I don’t have what he needs. Well hope you like and learn something (if your’re not learning French…I’m sorry.)