THE ISSF IPOD Edition 1 2020. Looking back and Looking ahead

As another calendar year of shooting competition gets under way, ISSF takes the opportunity to remind all athletes, coaches, support personnel and national member federations to maintain a positive outlook and determined stance against doping in shooting sport. The continued success of ISSF’s anti-doping program is conditional on our ongoing collaboration and mutual renewed commitment to the fight against doping in sport.


 As we have done in the past, and it order to fulfill ISSF’s reporting obligations as a Signatory to the World Anti-Doping Code, this first edition of the 2020 IPOD takes a look back on the previous year and provides all readers, and WADA, with a summary of ISSF’s anti-doping activities.

The IPOD offers the following report on the ISSF’s 2019 Anti-Doping Program in the form of a simple Q & A (Questions and Answers).

How many IN-competition doping controls did ISSF undertake in 2019?

At the ISSF World Championships, ISSF World Cups & ISSF World Cup Finals: 198

At Continental Competitions:  186

At Junior World Cups: 29

The total number of in-competition doping controls undertaken where ISSF was the testing authority in 2019 is: 413

How many OUT-of-competition doping controls did ISSF undertake in 2019?

The total number of out-of-competition doping controls undertaken by ISSF in 2019 is: 28

How many doping controls were undertaken by ISSF in total in 2019? 

The total amount of urine samples collected both in and out of competition in 2019 is: 441

Note: ISSF only conducts urine tests as it has been confirmed by WADA further to a physiological risk assessment and sports specific analysis that blood testing is not necessary in shooting sport.

How many anti-doping rule violations occurred and were decided at the international level in 2019?

As of December 31, 2019: 

  • There was 1 asserted anti-doping rule violation case that occurred further to ISSF’s international-level  in-competition or out-of-competition testing.
  • The case involved Letrozole (Hormone and metabolic modulator under section S4.1 of the WADA Prohibited List). 
  • The Athlete accepted a 2-month period of ineligibility as a  consequence of this violation. 

How many anti-doping rule violations occurred and were decided at the national level from doping controls collected in 2019? 

As of December 31, 2019: 

·       There were 3 anti-doping rule violations asserted at the national level and reported to ISSF. 

·       The reported national-level anti-doping rule violations involve the following prohibited class of substances under the WADA Prohibited List:

  • Hydrochlorothiazide (Diuretics and Masking Agents under Section S5 of the WADA Prohibited List)
  • 4-OH Propranolol (metabolite of Propranolol) (Beta-blocker under Section P1 of the WADA Prohibited List)
  • Amfetamine (Stimulant under Section S6 of the WADA Prohibited List)
  • There are also cases pending. 
  • Other possible national level anti-doping rule violations were resolved because of the existence of valid Therapeutic Use Exemptions.

In accordance with its obligations under the World Anti-Doping Code (Code), ISSF will continue to monitor the disciplinary measures imposed on shooting sport athletes by any national level disciplinary panel to ensure that all decisions rendered in these national-level cases comply with the ISSF Anti-Doping Rules. This is pointedly so with regards to all the national level doping violations involving the use of beta blockers.

How many missed tests or failure to submit whereabouts information cases were reported in 2019?

There were two whereabouts failures and/or missed tests asserted against ISSF Registered Testing Pool Athletes in 2019. 


How many athletes in the ISSF Registered Testing Pool (RTP) at the end of the year?

At the end of 2019 (Quarter 4, 2019), there were 20 athletes in the RTP. 

As always, the athletes included in the RTP are listed on the ISSF Anti-Doping page on the ISSF website.


ISSF is steadfast in implementing its anti-doping program and promoting drug-free sport. 

Accordingly, and further to the positive feedback received from WADA further to the Code Compliance Questionnaire audit completed last year, ISSF shall continue to tackle all anti-doping issues with renewed determination and conviction in 2020.

The ISSF Registered Testing Pool (RTP)

As stated above, there were 20 athletes in the ISSF RTP at the end of 2019. 

As in 2019, the 2020 ISSF Registered Testing Pool (RTP) is defined as follows:

                                 The ISSF shall identify a Registered Testing Pool of those Athletes who are required to comply with the whereabouts requirements of Annex I to the International Standard for Testing and Investigations, and shall make available through ADAMS, a list which identifies those Athletes included in its Registered Testing Pool either by name or by clearly defined, specific criteria. The ISSF shall coordinate with National Anti-Doping Organizations the identification of such Athletes and the collection of their whereabouts information. 

                                 The ISSF shall review and update as necessary its criteria for including Athletes in its Registered Testing Pool, and shall revise the membership of its Registered Testing Pool from time to time as appropriate in accordance with this criteria. Athletes shall be notified before they are included in a Registered Testing Pool and when they are removed from that pool. Each Athlete in the Registered Testing Pool shall do the following, in each case in accordance with Annex I to the International Standard for Testing and Investigations: (a) advise the ISSF of his/her whereabouts on a quarterly basis; (b) update that information as necessary so that it remains accurate and complete at all times; and (c) make him/herself available for Testing at such whereabouts. 

ISSF is confident its refined RTP has better satisfied the objectives of the ISSF and the World Anti-Doping Program whilst meeting the requirements of ISSF’s anti-doping program and yearly test distribution plan. 

In 2020, the RTP will continue to hold only 20-22 athletes at any one time. This is:

  • to make sure the ISSF can adequately receive and oversee whereabouts information from a better defined and selective number of its elite athletes. 
  • to ensure that the ISSF RTP does not get too big to administer or to fulfill its functions of deterrence, transparency and accountability.
  •  to allow ISSF to better fulfill its compliance obligations with regards to testing and intelligence gathering under the International Standard for Testing and Investigations (ISTI) and Code.  

In addition, the ISSF intends to run a secondary Testing Pool to ensure that adequate testing is being undertaken on all athletes prior to the Tokyo Olympic Games.

 The ISSF Test Distribution Plan (TDP)

The ISSF Anti-Doping Committee has successfully devised its 2020 Test Distribution Plan (TDP) with the objectives of planning and implementing the distribution of doping controls both in-competition and out-of-competition. The purpose of the TDP is to effectively detect, deter and prevent doping practices in shooting sport throughout the 2020 competition calendar. 

Prior to outlining its 2020 TDP, a mandatory physiological risk assessment of doping in shooting sport was once again expertly and knowledgeably undertaken by the ISSF Anti-Doping and Medical Committees.  Consequently, the TDP was elaborated based on the ISSF’s Anti-Doping Committee unique understanding, knowledge and appreciation of shooting sport and its athletes.

ISSF’s 2020 TDP complies with the Code and the ISTI and respects the ISSF Anti-Doping Rules. The TDP shall be implemented by all ISSF Event Organisers and ISSF Technical Delegates throughout the 2020 calendar year. It shall also be evaluated, modified and updated periodically, as required, by the ISSF.

The Athlete Biological Passport

The ISSF believes that although a typical doping control approach based on the detection of prohibited substances or their metabolites in an athlete’s sample remains an effective approach to combat doping in shooting sport, it has limitations when an athlete may be using substances on an intermittent and low-dose basis.  

Furthermore, notwithstanding all the advances that have been made in this field, it is hard to argue that new substances or modifications of prohibited substances (designer drugs) or methods continue to be difficult to detect by conventional analytical means.  In fact, doping regimes have become much more scientifically planned and have taken full advantage of the weaknesses in traditional protocols.  

These elements, among others including requirements under the Code, endorsed ISSF’s decision to implement a more sophisticated and complementary strategy to effectively fight doping in shooting sport in addition to traditional doping controls: the Athlete Biological Passport (ABP).  

ISSF adopted the steroidal module of the ABP at the end of 2017 and is steadfast in its belief that the implementation of the ABP continues keep our anti-doping rule violations low by not only deterring potential cheaters but by making all our athletes more accountable.  

ISSF trusts that it has properly integrated the ABP its existing doping control program by weighing all factors including the required resources and capacity to operate such a program. As such, you can all expect for ISSF to continue to build is ABP database in 2020 and to use it to effectively and efficiently complement all its other anti-doping initiatives. 

ISSF thanks the Cologne Laboratory for its great work as the ISSF’s Athlete Passport Management Unit.

Doping controls

The TDP governs which method of testing shall be utilised in the course of each Championship or out-of-competition. ISSF conducts a combination of random doping controls, targeted doping controls and requisite doping controls (World Records, Olympic Games Quota Places etc.). 

Various factors, criteria and variables lead to the athlete selection process. These include but are not limited to athlete results and rankings, the ISSF’s Testing Intelligence Officer’s gathering and monitoring of relevant data and information, and totally random selections. 

With the assistance of qualified National Anti-Doping Organisations teams and Doping Control Service Providers, ISSF shall carefully over-see the carrying out all doping controls throughout 2020, notably in the lead up to the Tokyo Olympic Games,  to determine if both the amount of doping controls being conducted in-competition and out-of-competition and the doping control selection methods applied adequately fulfill the objectives of the TDP. 

The intention is to conduct roughly the same amount of both in-competition doping controls in 2020 as in 2019 but to increase the amount of out-of-competition doping controls during the pre-games period Because 2020 Olympic Games Quota places are still being awarded, the testing numbers are expected to increase slightly.

As usual, you can expect the ISSF to report on the outcome of its 2020 testing program at the beginning of 2021.



·       Ongoing initiatives

Every year, throughout the year, ISSF urges all its athletes, all its national federations and everyone involved in shooting sport, be it athlete support personnel, trainers, doctors, parents, etc. to get educated or better informed on anti-doping.  

To this end, ISSF has established many educational vehicles through which it disseminates anti-doping information.  The following are ongoing initiatives:

  •  The Information Portal On Doping  (IPOD) is regularly being posted on the Athlete’s Page on the ISSF website and in the anti-doping section. The IPOD serves both as an information medium and as a reminder to all individuals involved in shooting sport to respect various responsibilities and obligations with regards to anti-doping. All past editions of the IPOD can be downloaded here


  • The ISSF website provides a wealth of information on doping, rules and regulations, answers to common questions and various links to all relevant WADA documents and anti-doping materials. Some of the materials can be found here:


  • With the support of the ISSF Athletes Committee ISSF hopes to reach a wider range of athletes and gain greater support for its many anti-doping initiatives.  We will of course continue to post all future editions of the IPOD not only on the Anti-Doping Page but also on the Athletes Page on the ISSF website.
  •  The WADA website has valuable materials for athletes, coaches, trainers etc.  All of these can be downloaded for free from the WADA website (
  •   The facilitating of ongoing cooperation between NADO and RADO’s and national federations also remains a priority. ISSF encourages NADOs to be proactive in reaching out to their national shooting federations in order to disseminate anti-doping education to national and regional level athletes, specially the juniors, via the national federation’s elected Education Information Officer.

Remember that the goal is to foster and open the communication lines between national federations and their NADO – in your country’s primary language - so that you may work together in the common goal of educating national-level shooting athletes. Therefore, 

  • If your national federation has identified its Education Information Officer and that individual has not yet been contacted by your NADO or RADO, please also inform Doris at and she will assist in facilitating this initial introduction. 
  • If your national federation has not identified its Education Information Officer, we ask that you do so at your earliest convenience and inform Doris


·       Upcoming initiatives

At the year-end ISSF Committee meetings in Munich in December 2019, the ISSF Medical and Anti-Doping Committees met with the ISSF Athletes Committee Chair to brainstorm on new ideas that could help ISSF’s educational initiatives reach a wider range of shooting athletes.

Also, the ISSF Medical Committee will be posting a variety of health-related articles on its Athletes Page in the Anti-Doping Section of its website which may not be directly related to anti-doping, but which seek to educate athletes on better mental and physical health practices, including the avoidance of performance enhancing drugs.

If you have any good ideas that can help disseminate the anti-doping message to our athletes and coaches via social media, please do not hesitate to contact us at and share your ideas.


Anti-Doping Rules

A revised World Anti-Doping Code has been adopted in November 2019 and will come into effect on January 1, 2021.

This means that the ISSF Anti-Doping Rules will undergo a significant revision and amendment process this year in order to have Code compliant anti-doping Rules in place by January 1 2021.

We will be informing you of significant anticipated modifications that will be brought to the ISSF Anti-Doping Rules by way of the IPOD both on the Athlete’s page and the Anti-Doping Page throughout 2020.

Education, and thereby a better knowledge of the applicable rules and obligations, is the cornerstone to successfully deterring all our athletes from using performance enhancing substances.

Anti-doping rules are consistently changing to keep up with the ever-changing landscape of anti-doping in sport. It is important for everyone to stay abreast of the most recent developments and updated regulations. More importantly, it is imperative for athletes of all levels and from all corners of the world to become better informed on the dangers of doping and on the importance of respecting their obligations under national and international anti-doping rules.

Everyone involved in shooting should and must get acquainted with the applicable Anti-Doping Rules and more importantly understand their respective responsibilities and obligations under these same Rules. As we are all bound by the same rules, it continues to be up to each of us to implement all the elements of the ISSF Anti-Doping Program, both in theory and in practice, as well as to comply with our respective obligations under the ISSF Anti-Doping Rules and the World Anti-Doping Code. 

As ISSF has repeated time and time again…. Ignorance of the rules is never a defence.

Because you are all bound by the ISSF Anti-Doping Rules, ISSF invites you to carefully read them and to acknowledge all your respective obligations under these Rules. They can be downloaded off the ISSF website at

ISSF always welcomes any questions any IPOD reader may have about the meaning or impact of any provision of its Anti-Doping Rules. Please remember that it is always better to ask questions and be well informed than to risk the potentially devastating consequences of being ill-informed. 


Final words:

If ISSF is proud of the work it continues to accomplish in carrying out its Code-compliant anti-doping program, it is equally proud to acknowledge the work that each of you has accomplished in 2019.  

ISSF’s Anti-Doping Report would not be complete if it did not recognize the hard work of: 

  • All ISSF national federations who respect their reporting and results management obligations and actively educate their athletes on the dangers of using prohibited substances. 
  • All medical staff who must be mindful of the Prohibited List, offering Code-compliant consultations and properly filing out complete and timely TUE applications for international -level athletes.  
  • All athlete support personnel who deter athletes from using performance enhance substances by emphasizing the importance of proper training and nutrition and the adoption of ethical sporting values.  
  • ISSF’s Athlete Passport Management Unit, the Cologne Laboratory, for its expertise and collaboration.
  • All ISSF Event Organisers and especially ISSF Technical Delegates who are committed and work hard to successfully carry out the ISSF Test Distribution Plan.
  • All ISSF RTP athletes who submit timely and accurate whereabouts information;  and,
  • All athletes, at any level, who have made a personal decision to not use prohibited substances or methods to enhance their performance and discouraged others to do so as well. 


ISSF THANKS EACH OF YOU for taking your responsibilities regarding anti-doping seriously and for protecting the integrity of shooting sport, for promoting the health and well-being of all ISSF athletes and for generally respecting and honouring the intrinsic values of sport.