The affects drugs have on your athletic performance

The affects drugs have on your athletic performance

Last updated on: Mar 14, 2023 • Rocky Mountain Hockey Schools

A brief outline on some of the most commonly used drugs and their affect on an athlete's performance:


Tobacco is in cigarettes, chew, and cigars. It causes lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema (an abnormal swelling of the bodily tissues caused by the accumulation of oxygen), and greatly increases your chance of a heart attack.

Athletic Effects: 
Nicotine makes the heart work harder which uses up more oxygen and cuts down on the amount available to the heart and bloodstream. This raises your blood pressure and narrows your blood vessels which calms you down. So while you are trying to compete in a quick twitch muscle sport such as hockey, your nicotine use is actually calming you down and slowing your reflexes and reaction times.


This drug is consumed and rapidly absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the stomach. This causes slowed reaction times, worsens coordination and muscle control, and large amounts can cause a slow stupor, coma or even death. Another problem with alcohol use revolves around drinking and driving. Over the last 10 years 250,000 Americans lost their lives in alcohol related traffic deaths. That breaks down to 25,000 deaths every year, 500 every week, 70 every day, or 1 every minute.

Athletic Effects:
This drug effects the central nervous system as a mood altering agent. It causes excessive weight gain, mental stress, and internal problems that can lead to stunted growth, loss of coordination, delayed reaction times, excessive liver damage, and communication problems.


This drug is inhaled into the lungs where it is also absorbed directly into the bloodstream and stored in the bodies fat cells. It effects the brain ability to think clearly, it's learning capacities, short term memory, along with delaying reaction times to visual and audible stimuli.

Athletic Effects:
It effects the bodies central nervous system as a stimulant and therefore has various negative effects on the entire body. It alters the brain chemistry by slowing motor skills and mobility, interferes with motor skills involving physical and mental coordination, and stunts teen growth.



More than a million Americans are currently using steroids to make themselves bigger, faster, and stronger. They can only be obtained legally with a prescription and pose serious life threatening illnesses because of the damage they do to the bodies internal organs. They can cause other outwards signs as well including acne, hair loss, and sterility.

Athletic Effects:
The deteriorate the body from the inside out, staring with the increased chance for heart attacks, and internal organ failure, not to mention the fact that they are universally banned from competition.