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UKAD coordinates the UK’s testing programme across more than 40 sports in accordance with the International Standard for Testing.

In operating a national anti-doping programme, UKAD is responsible for the collection and transportation of samples to a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) accredited laboratory. UKAD is also responsible for reporting test results to the appropriate National Governing Body (NGB) or International Federation (IF).

In-Competition Testing

In-competition testing is conducted in connection with a sporting event.

WADA define in-competition as “the period commencing 12 hours before competition… through to the end of such competition and the sample-collection process related to such competition”, unless stated otherwise by the rules of an IF or other relevant anti-doping organisation.

Every sporting event may be subject to testing, and athletes should familiarise themselves with the rules of each competition as defined by their IF or NGB.

Who can be tested?

Any athlete entering a competition, or named as a member of a team participating in a competition, at any level within the UK, is eligible for testing as part of UKAD’s national anti-doping programme.

Selection process for testing in-competition

The selection of athletes for testing is determined by UKAD in conjunction with the relevant NGB or IF. Selection is based on the following criteria:

  • Placing in the event (e.g. 1st, 2nd or 10th) or lane draw
  • Discipline, category or round
  • A set number of players from each team (usually using random selection)
  • Pre-selected testing
  • Qualifying for national representation.

Most sports will not recognise a world or national record until an athlete has been tested and a negative result has been returned.

Out-of-Competition Testing

Athletes subject to the anti-doping rules of their sport are eligible for testing at any time. Athletes may also be selected for the National or International Registered Testing Pool (NRTP/IRTP).

Athletes nominated for inclusion in the NRTP will be notified by UKAD and will be required to supply details of their whereabouts on ADAMS. This is called Whereabouts Filing.

Sample Collection

UKAD follows the International Standard for Testing (IST) which is applicable to testing in and out-of-competition.

Procedures for testing abroad may vary slightly from country to country but should always meet the IST. Athletes are advised to read and understand their sport’s anti-doping rules and sample collection procedures.


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