Clean Sport

All rowers have the right to compete in sport knowing that they, and their competitors, are clean. Oxford Brookes University Boat Club operated in accordance with British Rowing, and strongly believes in clean sport to ensure the integrity of the sport is protected.

The use of performance-enhancing drugs and other doping behaviour severely damages the legitimacy of sport and undermines the integrity of clean rowers.

All coaches are accredited UKAD advisors, and the squad annually briefs of the importance of compliance with Clean Sport, with the help of the British Rowing Anti-Doping & Integrity Officer.

Oxford Brookes University Boat Club commits to support Clean Sport in the UK in the following ways:

  • –  OBUBC supports the mission of UK Anti-Doping and WADA in achieving Clean Sport.
  • –  All athletes are expected to play, train and compete in line with the spirit of sport, including the anti-doping rules.
  • –  All coaches and athlete support personnel are expected to perform their role in line with the spirit of sport, including the anti-doping rules.
  • –  OBUBC is committed to supporting the prevention of doping behaviour in the UK in collaboration with other sporting bodies
  • –  Employed and associated ‘staff’ will not condone, assist or in any way support the use of prohibited substances and methods (unless permitted by a Therapeutic Use Exemption) in any aspects of their work.
  • –  All employed and associated staff will be expected to contact UK Anti-Doping should they become aware of an athlete or NGB member using or considering the usage of a prohibited substance or prohibited method. This contact should be done in confidence on the dedicated confidential Report Doping in Sport line.
  • –  OBUBC will uphold any sanctions placed upon an athlete by UK Anti-Doping or other associated body in accordance with the World Anti-Doping Code.

Oxford Brookes University Boat Club also follows the British Rowing Supplement Policy, which is outlined in full below:

A supplement should be considered to be any substance consumed deliberately by a rower to enhance their daily diet, (a nutritional supplement) or to elicit a performance enhancing or ergogenic effect (a Performance Supplement), or to self-treat ill health or injury.

Medication prescribed by a doctor is not a supplement and does not fall under the Supplements Policy. All medications should be checked on Global DRO to ensure they are not banned for sports participation.

In the UK, supplements must comply with food labelling regulations of 1996. There is no requirement in food law to take sport safety or doping issues into account. Ingredients do not have to be listed on product labels if they are less than 25% of the final product. These ingredients may include substances prohibited by the World Anti-Doping Code. Food laws within Europe and the rest of the world are not uniform, and as such supplements bought overseas, over the Internet or by mail order pose an even greater threat.

Assess the Need

Before taking a supplement ask yourself if there is anything else that could be improved – are you training smart, are you giving yourself the best recovery opportunities and are you consuming enough calories to fuel your training – are these calories primed before and after exercise for instance? This assessment may require reference to the GBRT Basic Nutrition Guide and discussions with your coach, your parent, a nutritionist or your doctor. The GBRT Basic Nutrition guide provides practical information on nutrition for an aspiring rower and recipes which in some areas will provide a cost effective alternative to supplement use (e.g. hydration drinks, protein shakes). The guide can be found on the British Rowing website here

In our sport, no vitamin or mineral supplements should be required if a rower is consuming adequate energy from a variety of foods to maintain bodyweight whilst training. However for rowers following a vegetarian diet, or have sustained an injury or who need to make weight, individual specialist dietary assessment may be required.

Assess the Risk

If a supplement is thought to be advisable after assessment (e.g. an electrolyte drink for training in hot conditions) it is important that a rower uses ONLY batch-tested supplements. All batch-tested supplements in the UK are listed on

Assess the Consequence

Supplements should be regarded as the final tweaking in performance rather than the foundation to performance. The arbitrary use of supplements brings significant risks both to your health and to your longevity in sport – an inadvertent positive drug test could bring a ban from sport of up to 4 years.

British Rowing strongly advises against the arbitrary use of supplements.

A list and details of the ten Anti-Doping Rule Violations (ADRVs) can be found here

The Global Drug Reference Online (Global DRO) provides athletes and support personnel with information about the prohibited status of specific medications based on the current World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Prohibited List. Athletes looking to check medication should visit their website.

Informed Sport is a supplement testing and certification programme which provides assurance to athletes that products carrying the Informed Sport mark have been regularly tested for prohibited substances and manufactured to high quality standards.

The Informed Sport website allows athletes to check their supplements using the batch ID number on the product. This can be done on their website.

If you have any questions or concerns about Anti-Doping, all BROOKES|Rowing coaches are accredited UK Anti Doping Accredited Advisors and can help advise. Get in touch with them here.