As you know (?) Olympic Games has begun and browsing various articles I stumbled upon the one about the limits in sport. Generally, scientists, at least those mentioned in the article agree that we are near the limits and if people would want to beat records in some disciplines genetic intervention will be required. For example male's record in 100 metres is now 9,59, but it is presumed that human male can't run faster than circa 9,48, considering that he's not a cyborg and wind isn't too strong of course. He can't, because our brain can't "let" our muscles and tendons do damage to themselves. Similarly in other disciplines, like high jump and long jump - experts generally agree that it is next to impossible that record, if beaten, will be spectacular. It's possible that somebody will jump 2,47 or 8,96, but certainly results like 2,80 or 9,50 are not possible. There are calculations, that in marathon, where record oscillates around 2 hours 3 mins, we will go down to 2 hours, some time around 2021. But 1:45? Not possible. They set the absolute limit for 1:58, because it appears that human body can't process more energy into muscle power.
However, as logical as it sounds, there are exceptions. The brain blockade can be bypassed under certain condition, like immense fear or stress. Humans are technically capable of running faster, jumping further and lifting more weigh under such circumstances, however it means damage which will become perceptible when chemistry in body will return to normality. Now, do we face new kind of doping where people will be stuffed with hormons inducing extreme fear, run 100 metres in 9 secs, only to find a couple of hours later that their legs are completely crushed inside. But how insignificant it is when you have gold medal dangling on your neck.
Grecorivera5150 wrote:We may also become such a drug driven society that the moral qualms and legal barriers that go along with the current dynamic cease to exist and everyone everywhere is doping.
-- Updated August 5th, 2012, 4:13 pm to add the following --
Anyway, you probably know Oscar Pistorius, the guy who runs 400 metres with prosthetic legs. He didn't qualify to the final just a couple of minutes ago, but for the first time somebody with prosthetics was allowed to compete in Olympic Games. Somebody decided that his artificial limbs, even if they were created by a genius engineer don't create an advantage (proved to be true as he was last in his semifinal), merely giving him a false hope that he competes on normal terms with healthy humans. But the rule was broken. Does it create an opportunity for future abuse?