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FIS partners with ITA and UMIT Tyrol to build and implement clean sport education plans


FIS has partnered with the International Testing Agency (ITA) to build and implement an Education Plan compliant with the 2021 World Anti-Doping Code and new International Standard for Education.

Being prepared for doping control, having awareness about athletes’ rights and responsibilities, knowing the right tools to check medications and supplements, correctly submitting whereabouts information – these and many more topics are essential knowledge for every top-level athlete. However, these issues are complex and should be brought to the attention of the athlete in the right form at the right time in their career, because it is ultimately their responsibility to protect themselves from both intentional and inadvertent doping.

In order to protect and empower the athletes and all of the FIS community as they navigate the anti-doping system, FIS has partnered with the ITA to develop a comprehensive clean sport education programme. The partnership has come into effect in September 2020 and will last for a first term until the end of 2021. 

In a first step, the ITA in close collaboration with FIS and its existing activities is developing an Education Plan for FIS in accordance with the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA’s) International Standard for Education 2021. The ITA will also provide consultative support to ensure that said Education Plan is fully compliant with the incoming 2021 World Anti-Doping Code that makes anti-doping education compulsory for Code Signatories for the first time.

“Education and prevention are key elements of the clean sport landscape, but they are also very different from other anti-doping programme components that can be fully delegated. Education needs to be developed and delivered in close collaboration with a sporting body and I am thrilled that my FIS colleagues fully embrace this approach. This cooperation between FIS, ITA and UMIT is a progressive initiative for clean sport education that combines our respective strengths and resources in order to protect and empower FIS athletes and the larger sport community”, said Olya Abasolo, ITA Education Manager.


    FIS and ITA to partner with UMIT Tyrol to evaluate and report on education programme

    In a second step, and in collaboration with FIS, the ITA will elaborate a strategy for the implementation of the plan for different target groups, including athletes, coaches and other Athlete Support Personnel.

    FIS has partnered with UMIT Tyrol, the Universität für Gesundheitswissenschaften, Medizinische Informatik und Technikto provide evidence-based and tailored prevention programmes to its athletes by not only evaluating its current prevention measures with the support of an independent research-driven process but also by including its athletes within this process to learn about their perception of the current programmes and potential needs for improvement.

    The ITA will work closely with UMIT Tyrol to make sure that the right metrics are in place to measure the growth and effectiveness of the education efforts. 

    “We are happy to be able to contribute to this important project initiated by FIS. I think in the long run, the evaluation of the current FIS material as well as the approach to include athletes voices to learn about their perception will allow us to identify effective preventive measures that are perceived useful and legitimate, thus, increasing the commitment of engaging in doping-free sport” states Assoc. Prof. Dr. Cornelia Blank from the Institute of Sports Medicine, Alpine Medicine and Health Tourism (ISAG) at the UMIT Tyrol, the principal investigator of the project.

    Prof. Dr. Sandra Ückert, rector of the UMIT Tyrol is convinced that the long-year research experience and competence in the field of anti-doping of the ISAG at the UMIT Tyrol is a benefit for this project. “I am proud that the UMIT Tyrol is again considered as research partner in the important task to engage in doping-free sport. It reflects the ongoing efforts of the research team at the ISAG to not only provide evidence to predict risk and protective factors in regard to doping behavior but furthermore to engage in bridging the gap between research and practice to support translating the research findings into feasible prevention programmes”. 

    The original article can be found here.

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