The average person that’s not into nutritional science, hormonal optimization or physiological science likely lumps human growth hormone (HGH) into the steroids category of performance enhancing drugs in sports. But the reality is, the only way you can truly alter your body’s HGH levels to a supraphysiological state where you will notice a significant difference in your body’s chemistry/mechanics is to be injected with high doses of it.
The point I’m trying to make is, despite there being supplements out there that tout increases in HGH, the only way you will see a spike in your own production is if you were to go to the doctor tomorrow and have a doctor inject you with it.
HGH has to do majorly with muscle recovery, and this is why I say the NFL shouldn’t bother testing it with its players: seventeen weeks in the regular season plus the playoffs if your team is worth a damn. Sure, you might get a bye (or two, if you are one of the top two seeds in your respective conference), but that will take a toll on anybody’s body. Being hit hard again and again, week after week, several (understatement) times a game. This especially goes for lineman. Back in the ’70s and ’80s, the offensive linemens’ performance enhancing drug of choice was cocaine. My oh my, how far the NFL has come.
So I don’t see HGH as a monumental negative game changer in the world of American football in terms of giving one player an advantage over the other. Now, if you take two guys, give them the same treatment week after week in terms of being hit, and one is receiving HGH injections and the other isn’t, then yeah, there will be a clear cut advantage. Natural HGH production occurs while you are sleeping, which is one of the many reasons quality sleep is key for everyone. Theoretically, an HGH user can sleep less.
But every player in the NFL should be allowed to seek HGH treatment. Why not? They need the recovery.
I, for one, don’t want to see the stars of the game fall, injure themselves and not be able to return for a significant amount of time. I want to watch the best in the world play.
“But Troy! Baseball has HGH banned! They played more games in football! They play 162 regular season games!”
So what? Baseball players spend more time standing around, picking their nose and having the right fielder chat with the chick rocking cleavage more than they do expending physical energy or muscular force. Not to mention it’s a non-contact sport. In football, you are running your body into someone, rampantly and excessively (read that sentence again). It’s inherently violent. Baseball is not. HGH usage in baseball is silly and should be tested and players should be accounted for it.
“But Troy! What about the UFC!? It’s a combat sport involving fighting!”
I’m mixed on this one. In MMA or even boxing, your body will take an immense toll, but you aren’t taking a beating week after week for a quarter (+) of the year. You at least get 3-6 months (average, but many variables are involved) before your next fight. But as far as I know HGH isn’t tested for in one organization, the UFC. I’m not sure about others. Regardless, I’m not against the usage of HGH in the first place if you’re getting your head drilled with punches and kicks multiple times a year.