Technological doping

Other Names:
Technology fraud in sport
Unethical sports engineering
Misuse of sporting equipment for cheating

Technological doping refers to the issue of using "performance enhancing" sports equipment (i.e. sports equipment, footwear, clothing, prosthetics) to gain a competitive advantage in a sporting event. Its definition varies according to the individual sport, but it is officially recognized as a concern by the World Anti-Doping Agency. The lack of a universal description also creates a gray zone of what is considered technological doping and whether advancements in sports technology are just that – technological improvements – or can ultimately threaten the integrity of the sport. 


Back in 2006, the World Anti-Doping Agency started a dialogue about the impacts of "technology doping" as allegations across the sports world were reported. The issue is since recognized as a potential threat to many types of sport that employ individual equipment, kit or personal devices. 


Within the world of sports, there are many standards set for sports equipment. Whether it's soccer ball weight, baseball bat material, or tennis racquet length, these standards prevent unfair advantages between competitors. 

When an athlete is able to use a brand-new technology to perform better, especially when personal records are repeatedly broken, the question of technological doping comes into play.  Currently, swimwear, sports equipment, apparel and footwear are under scrutiny by the sports authorities and cited as being examples of technology doping.

Related Problems:
Drug abuse in sports
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-beingGOAL 10: Reduced InequalityGOAL 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goal
Problem Type:
G: Very specific problems
Date of last update
04.10.2020 – 22:48 CEST