The increased availability of these products on the Internet, by mail order, or from nutritional supplement retailers, allows student athletes access to a wide variety of supplements that are highly marketed in fitness and strength training magazines with promises, endorsed by faulty research claims, of extraordinary weight loss, explosive power, or tremendous strength gains. As a coach, athletic administrator, or parent it is important to be aware of and educate oneself about what substances your student athletes may be using and about the potential risks involved with uneducated supplement use.
Nutritional supplements are not the only thing readily available for athletes looking to improve performance. Illicit drugs are also used with the goal of aiding performance.
Position Statement on Use of Drugs, Medicine and Food Supplements in Interscholastic Sports – National Federation of State High School Associations Endorsed by the Ohio High School Athletic Association Board of Control
School personnel and coaches should not dispense any drug, medication or food supplement except with extreme caution and in accordance with policies developed in consultation with parents, health care professional and senior administrative personnel of the school or school district.
Use of any drug, medication or food supplement in a way not prescribed by the manufacturer should not be authorized or encouraged by school personnel and coaches. Even natural substances in unnatural amounts may have short-term or long-term negative health effects.
In order to minimize health and safety risks to student-athletes, maintain ethical standards and reduce liability risks, school personnel and coaches should never supply, recommend or permit the use of any drug, medication or food supplement solely for performance-enhancing purposes.