Athletes set to participate at the Tokyo Olympics were briefed on anti-doping rules

The Russian Olympic Committee and the Russian International Olympic University (RIOU), together with RUSADA, held an anti-doping seminar online for athletes set to participate at the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.

Athletes and specialists representing the All-Russian Summer Sports Federations listened to a lecture on the specifics of anti-doping rules applicable to the Tokyo Games: the procedure for collecting doping samples, as well as the procedure for obtaining permits for therapeutic use of prohibited substances and methods at the Olympic Games in Japan, and also about the specifics of providing information on athletes’ location to the ADAMS system during the Games. Additionally, issues related to the specifics of medical assistance during the Games were discussed.

The event was attended by many famous athletes: multiple World champions in rhythmic gymnastics Dina Averina and Arina Averina, three-time World champion in high jump Maria Lasitskene, Olympic bronze medallist in swimming Evgeny Rylov, World champion in volleyball Evgenia Startseva, winners of the 2016 Track Cycling World Champions Anastasia Voynova, Daria Shmeleva and Denis Dmitriev, Olympic bronze medallist in judo Natalya Kuzyutina, as well as Olympic bronze medallist in sailing Stefania Elfutina.

— Regular anti-doping educational events are an essential component of an effective anti-doping system. Participants of the Olympic Games need to know not only the basic provisions of the World Anti-Doping Code, but also the specifics of anti-doping rules applicable to the Games, which are developed by the IOC, — said the Advisor to the Rector of the RIOU on Development of Anti-Doping Programmes Veronika Loginova. — The purpose of our classes is to help athletes understand the intricacies of these rules and to provide answers to questions that may arise.

The Head of the Department for Implementing Educational Programmes at the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) Valeria Konova spoke in detail about online resources for verifying medicines and the rights and obligations of athletes during the collection of doping samples, and also about other important points related to testing at the Games.

— The International Testing Agency (ITA) will implement anti-doping programmes during the Games, — said the specialist. — All inspectors will speak English, so I advise you to select a team representative who will help you with the translation beforehand.

The Head of the Department for Therapeutic Use of Prohibited Substances at RUSADA Pavel Khorkin reminded everyone that the Olympic Games were a needle-free area, and any injections done must be declared.

— If necessary, you will be able to obtain a temporary permit for therapeutic use at the Games. However, it is important to remember that immediately after the closing ceremony of the competitions it will be annulled. If you need to continue taking the medicine, the procedure will have to be repeated.

Furthermore, based on the updated World Anti-Doping Code and WADA International Standards, if during the out-of-competition period you need to take a medicinal drug prohibited for use in competitions, you do not need to receive the permit in advance, — he added.

Issues related to the epidemiological situation were also addressed. The head coach of the Russian national artistic gymnastics team Andrei Rodionenko asked the specialists of RUSADA whether the doping control inspectors should provide a Certificate of Negative Test Result for coronavirus before taking samples.

— Our doping control inspectors regularly take PCR tests. Before arriving at the bases, they go through all the necessary procedures. If an athlete is being tested at home, he has the right to ask a RUSADA specialist for a certificate. I would like to note that our employees not only use protective equipment themselves, but also provide them to athletes.

As for the Olympic Games, the ITA will soon develop a separate protocol for anti-doping tests. I am sure that strict control will be established taking into account the health of all inspectors, — said Valeria Konova.

Recently, the Russian Olympic Committee, together with RUSADA, has held a cycle of similar anti-doping seminars for athletes who will take part in the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo. Such events will take place on a regular basis throughout the training period. They should cover as many athletes and staff representatives as possible. If the epidemiological situation improves, face-to-face educational events will take place as part of training camps.

At the next seminar, representatives of the National Sports Federations will be told in detail about the updated edition of the World Anti-Doping Code and WADA International Standards, the All-Russian Anti-Doping Rules and the Anti-Doping Rules of the Russian Olympic Committee.

In addition, a special section has appeared on the ROC’s official website where athletes and members of national teams set to participate in the Olympic Games in Tokyo can get acquainted in detail with the relevant materials. For example, they can find information on anti-doping rules applicable to these competitions.