Create: 04/05/2008 - 10:30
USAPL President Larry Maile is quoted in a Wall Street Journal article, Cheaters Do Prosper, published yesterday examining the possibility that the benefits of steroids never completely disappear. In the article, Maile says that "former steroid-using competitors who rehabilitate themselves often become top performers. "They're still bigger and stronger than they ever would have been," he says. There is no way to prove that they're still benefiting from their years of steroid use, he adds, but the question remains, "would they really have been that good had they never used?" The WSJ article examines an October 2006 study by the Department of Integrative Medical Biology at Sweden's Umea University. In that study, researchers compared muscle biopsies of 10 elite powerlifters who were not steroid users to 16 who had used or were using steroids. They found that the muscles of the former steroid users looked similar to those of the subjects who were still using them. It is noted that the study was too small to be definitive and a consensus regarding this result has not been reached. The first powerlifting federation was launched in 2008, WNPFLT, to address the issue at the heart of the study. The WNPFLT only allows lifetime drug free athletes at its competitions. Still other federations, like the AAU, offer lifetime drug free divisions at their competitions.