Kenya Teacher Trainee Athletes’ Awareness of Selected Performance- Enhancing Substances and Their Effects to Sports Performance
Janet Kamenju, Andanje Mwisukha, Rintaugu Elijah, Hellen Muthomi

It is in the public domain that amateur and professional athletes have used performanceenhancing substance (PES) with the aim of directly or indirectly improve performance. Research findings also indicate that athletes are not fully aware of physical, physiological and psychological effects of some of the substances and drugs used. Effects of the drugs and substances used have both short term and long term effects some of which are reversible after termination of the substance in use while others are irreversible. This paper discusses Kenya teacher trainee athletes’ awareness of PES use in sports. Trainees after graduating from colleges are expected to teach Physical education besides other subject as well as be sports coaches to young athletes in primary and secondary school levels of education. It is therefore imperative that teacher trainees be fully aware of the effects of PES in order to guide young athletes in achieving sports potential through training without resorting to using illegal methods. A total of 422 (211 male and 211 female) teacher trainees drawn from public and private teacher training colleges responded to a self report questionnaire. The respondents were participants in national ball games and track and field athletics sports competitions under Kenya Teachers Colleges Sports Association (KTSCA). Athletes’ awareness of PES and their effects of selected substances were assessed with items revolving around familiarity with the WADA anti-doping code, and extent of knowledge of use and effects of PES. This study findings show 49.3% of athletes knew of the WADA code while 43.3% were not aware of its existence. About 48.0% knew of the regulation as stipulated in the code but 42.7% did not know. Further athletes were not fully aware of effects of selected substances with 67.8%, 47.0%, 51.9%, 43.6% and 51.5% reporting that miraa (khat), marijuana, caffeine, anabolic steroids, and cocaine respectively do not enhance sports performance. It was recommended that a comprehensive anti-doping strategy at primary, secondary and, colleges be adopted where anti-doping education can be imparted beyond classroom. Investigation should be done on the level of awareness of doping/PES by athletes’ personnel of collegiate teams. Research is necessary to establish the effectiveness of the doping content taught to the teacher trainees

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jpesm.v3n2a2