Methods used to get athletes to their peak would be unacceptable outside of the stadium, but success papers over a lot of cracks.
Several initiatives have been launched to foster a sporting culture more conducive to the involvement of women in South Africa, including new laws. But evidence shows much still needs to be done.
A recent decision by the International Olympic Committee has cheerleading under consideration for Tokyo 2020. But its very status as a sport has constantly been questioned.
When athletes take a stand on sociopolitical issues, they have a public profile by which to showcase their views. But they face criticism that it is not their 'place' to comment on sensitive matters.
From Sharapova to the Brownlee brothers, 2016 has given us one step forward to one step back.
There are 16 contenders for the 2016 BBC Sports Personality of the Year award... But who is the best athlete?
Technology has had a particularly visible impact on the Paralympics. But the the most important thing is to let the athlete's ability come to the fore.
Australian Paralympic athlete reflects upon how her experience as a student-athlete influenced a pilot program for Para-athletes to combine the pursuit of Paralympic success and study
A new Russian hack has claimed to reveal the details of so-called therapeutic use exemptions. But could transparency in this area be a benchmark for the fight against drugs in sport?
Coaches are sometimes thought of as 'teachers' of their sport. So what can coaches learn from the field of education?
The Paralympic Games started off as a way to motivate and rehabilitate returned servicemen and women after the second world war, and has evolved tremendously since then.
With so many athletes with different abilities and disabilities, the first challenge is to make sure there is fair play at the paralympics.
The achievements of the Paralympians, and societal shift towards more inclusivity and the celebration of diversity, has had a dramatic effect on the lives of people living with disability.
A 1992 paper predicted that if women's running performance continued to improve as rapidly as it had since the 1920s, top women athletes would soon be running as quickly as the men.
These athletes have the strength, speed and spring to jump over 18 metres.
Some women naturally produce high levels of testosterone. Why is this innate condition treated differently from other conditions that potentially enhance athletic performance?
Unravelling the common assumption that runners from Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia have a natural advantage.
As the track and field events are about to start in Rio, we look at how some athletic events have changed since the first Olympics in 1896.
Elite athletes run differently to us mere mortals, but there's nothing to stop you stealing a few of their techniques.
Athletes face as many as 640 organisational demands at a big competition – and they can all take their toll.