Chemistry in the Olympics

British triathlon world champion launches 2012 Global Experiment

29 March 2012

Two-time World Triathlon champion Alistair Brownlee launched the Royal Society of Chemistry's 2012 Global Experiment today calling for children around the world to test the effects of sports drinks on athletic performance. 

In the run up to the London 2012 Olympics the RSC's Education team has developed a Chemistry in the Olympics website as part of the Learn Chemistry website, where users access hundreds of free high-quality chemistry resources for teaching and learning. 

Alistair, 24, who studied chemistry A-level at Bradford Grammar School, told the RSC how much of a benefit chemistry has been to his studies and to his spectacular sporting career.

He said: "I really enjoyed chemistry in school. I studied it right up to A-level and carried it through to degree level where I started studying medicine and then ended up with a degree in physiology and sport science.

"I enjoyed all aspects of chemistry. Even now in my life as an athlete chemistry is all around me. It's involved in the equipment that I use, from the carbon and materials used in my bike to wetsuit and swimming suit material used throughout my competition. This is very important because it has to be good in the water and has to dry very quickly when you're outside the water.

"The Royal Society of Chemistry has produced the Chemistry in the Olympics website to talk about the specifics of chemistry in sport and the Olympics. 

"It is full of educational resources, interesting facts and all sorts of fun things to do related to chemistry. Why not have a go at the Global Experiment this summer at home or in school? It allows you to test your scientific skills and sporting prowess, while having fun along the way doing chemistry."

The Chemistry in the Olympics website will be populated with online resources from tutorials and question sheets, to practical ideas, and videos for use in class. It showcases the role of chemistry in sport in a fun and engaging way. 

The Global Experiment, where any school can participate, will test scientific skills and sporting ability while looking at effects of sports drinks on athletic performance.

Nicole Morgan, RSC schools and colleges manager, said: "With the enormous interest in and excitement around the London 2012 Olympics, we wanted to help students to explore the role that chemistry plays in our everyday lives, including sports and our health. We hope that students up and down the country - and beyond - will take part in our fun experiment." 

Related Links

Link icon Chemistry in the Olympics
Awareness of the range and depth of chemical science applications in all aspects of sport

External links will open in a new browser window

Related Link


Olympic nuts beat Bolt

26 March 2012

The prolonged strain and endurance that mark out marathon runners impress kids much more than the demands of the explosive 100 metres.

Contact and Further Information

Press Office