There are a lot of black and white issues in MMA. However, one area of gray pertains to the use of testosterone replacement therapy by fighters hoping to extend their careers. Though it’s a natural substance and prescribed by doctors, it’s also a performance enhancing process based on replenishing testosterone otherwise lost by the aging process.
A fighter who knows a thing or two about competing at a high level despite coming into the sport at a late age is Randy Couture, the former double-divisional champion who fought well into his 40s. Couture recently weighed in on the topic of TRT in an interview with MMAFrenzy where he had some interesting insight into the matter.
“There is such fine line with all of the anti-aging stuff that’s out there now,” began Couture on the topic. “TRT is generally something a guy does in their 40’s and 50’s when their natural production of testosterone drops off. There are other natural ways to boost your own body’s production without replacing it and it’s safer as well, but it still should be under the care of a physician. It’s a very fine and a very personal thing and there is no easy answer.”
“An athlete is using his body to earn a living and entertain the fans, they want to get the most out of themselves, but sometimes they go too far with it,” Couture concluded, showing both understanding and concern.
Recent examples of both situations include Quinton Jackson, who used testosterone to heal his knee faster than normal to be able to compete at an event in February, and Alistair Overeem, whose recent failed drug test for testosterone abuse cost him a title-fight and nine months of his career.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC