Volume 93, Issue 51

Tuesday, November 30, 1999


Board of Governors ratifies TA contract

Mercer gets second shot at admin

For-profit growth in CCBC plan

Province gets permit to party even harder

A little nookie goes a long way

Crime on campus discovers the wheel


Bass Ackwards

A little nookie goes a long way

By Emily Armstrong
Gazette Writer

Italian researchers claim a little pre-game sex can give athletes a performance boost.

Research compiled from L'Aquila University in Italy has shown testosterone, the hormone which makes men aggressive, rises after sex. Depending on the athlete, sex can improve their game, giving them an aggressive edge, the researchers claim.

Contrary to the belief that abstaining from sex before a game keeps players focused and competitive, the research illustrated sex enhances performance by making players more quarrelsome.

Peter Lemon, professor of kinesiology at Western, said he questioned the validity of the research. "As I recall, sex is a fatiguing activity that affects exercise levels," he said. "Testosterone levels go up and down all the time in men."

The study also refers to sex as an adaptive mechanism. When a man has sex, testosterone levels rise, making him want it more.

However, Beryl Chernick, a family medicine lecturer at Western and gynecologist, said sex will hinder one's performance in a game the next day only if it infringes on the amount of sleep one gets. "There's a fair amount of effort in the wooing process," he said.

"If [sex] is either by yourself or with a partner you're very comfortable with and they'll go to bed early, then I don't think it's going to affect a game."

Furthermore, Chernick said sexual intercourse coupled with orgasms before sleep can even be beneficial. "As far as for a man and ejaculation or a woman having an orgasm, those things are very good soporifics. In other words, they make you sleep.

"I think the really important thing is, before a game or an exam, you should get enough sleep," he added.

Aaron Abrams, co-captain of Western's rugby team, said sex before a game takes away focus. "I've always had a 48 hour rule," he said.

Bob Vigars, Western's cross country coach, said he is aware many players in the past have abstained from sex in hopes of harnessing some competitive energy. "I've seen both sides of the coin."

He added the solution is to keep everything in moderation. "I've always said that for guys it's not the sex that affects their game, it's staying up all night trying to get some.

"While their are some sex machines out there, sex seems to calm people down and put them to sleep, not make them more aggressive," he added.

Rock Basacco, Western's soccer coach, said he too was skeptical. "It's not something I would condone [for] my players."

Damon Hardy, captain of the Mustangs' hockey team, said he was a follower of conventional wisdom when it came to sex and athletic performance. "There's this general idea amongst hockey players that it gives you jello-legs," he said.

But Hardy said there was a possibility he might change his sexual habits. "There's now scientific evidence to the contrary, so I'm certainly willing to try," he added.

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Copyright The Gazette 1999