E-sports organizations will be enforcing new anti doping policies for athletes. Though the idea of considering gaming a sport may be difficult to take in, the scene has been increasing in both demand and potential revenue. As such, getting an advantage over other athletes is essential. E-sports leagues will test professional gamers for performance enhancing drugs, so as to ensure a level playing field.
But it isn’t steroids that professional gamers are using. Gaming involves strategy, planning and careful consideration, and as such, the stimulants they may decide to take differ greatly from what other athletes would go for. Drugs and alcohol are already banned at ELS hosted events.
Recently, E-sports team Cloud 9’s Counter Strike player Kory Friesen admitted to having used Adderall, a common ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) prescription drug. In a YouTube video, the CS:GO player also suggested that other members of his team had used the same drug during a tournament that took place in March.
For those who have been paying attention, such information isn’t that new, especially since the e-sports scene has been growing steadily. Professional players aren’t just battling for prize pools exceeding hundreds of thousands of dollars. In fact, certain games, such as Dota 2, have announced prize pools of over $17 million dollars, and it isn’t only tournament money that players are after. Landing a massive sponsorship can make or break a team, so e-sports athletes are always trying to get the upper hand.
Following the Counter Strike: Global Offensive player’s statement, Cloud 9 owner Jack Etienne immediately issued a statement insisting that none of his team’s players had consumed Adderall for anything other than medical conditions requiring the treatment.
“Cloud9 does not condone any of its players using illegal performance enhancing drugs,” Etienne said.
ESL (the European Sports League) has decided to seek the help of two anti-doping agencies, NADA and WADA, in order to create the policies that will be enforced. With the help of well-established policies, ESL hopes to ensure a level playing field all professional gamers competing for top tournament positions as well as to maintain the integrity of E-sports.
Curiously though, Kory Friesen, the player in question, responded to the media outrage that his initial statement had made, noting that ESL’s comments had been funny, especially since gamers are “all on Adderall”.
Photo credits: 1