Athlete Testing Guide

Learn what will happen during and after a testing session.

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    1. Athlete selection

    An athlete can be selected for testing anywhere, any time, and are subject to both random and targeted selection methods.

    The role of the Doping Control Officers (DCO) is to organise and manage the sample collection session. The role of the Chaperone is to notify, accompany, and witness an athlete provide a sample. The DCO can also perform all the duties of a Chaperone.

    DCOs and Chaperones ensure that sample collection occurs in strict accordance with the relevant procedures so all athletes are treated in a fair and equitable manner.

    2. Notification

    The DCO or Chaperone will notify an athlete for sample collection generally in person, or less frequently, by telephone, written notice, or by a third party.

    Once notified of selection for testing, the athlete must remain in direct observation of the DCO or Chaperone until the DCO is satisfied that the sample collection procedure is complete.

    Any attempt to evade notification may result in an anti‑doping rule violation and a ban from sport.

    Third party notifications

    We recommend that a third party (for example, a guardian or coach) is also notified of athlete selection for sample collection when an athlete is under the age of 18 or has difficulty communicating verbally in English.

    In the case of an athlete with an intellectual disability, it is a NAD Scheme requirement that a third party is notified.

    If the third party attempts to hinder the notification process this may be considered to be an anti-doping rule violation, and may result in a sanction for the third party.

    3. Reporting to the doping control station

    For no-advance notice testing, including in-competition testing, the athlete is required to report to the doping control station immediately unless they request a delay in reporting for valid reasons. These are listed under Athlete Rights in the Testing section of our website.

    The athlete can ask the DCO for information on the sample collection process.

    4. Selecting a collection vessel

    The athlete will be given a choice of individually sealed collection vessels, and they will select one. The athlete will verify that the equipment is intact and has not been tampered with, and they will maintain control of the collection vessel at all times.

    5. Providing the sample

    Urine sample provision

    Only a Chaperone (or DCO) of the same gender is permitted in the area of privacy when the athlete provides the sample. If the athlete is under 18 years of age, they may request their representative be present.The Chaperone (or DCO) will directly witness the urine sample leaving the athlete's body and going into the collection vessel.

    The athlete is required to thoroughly wash and dry their hands before providing a urine sample. They are also required to remove any clothing from the knees to the mid-torso and from the hands to the elbows.

    The athlete is responsible for controlling their sample and keeping it in view of the DCO or Chaperone until it is sealed in a sample collection kit.

    If the athlete provides a sample less than the required volume, they are required to temporarily seal it and provide further volume.

    The first urine sample(s) that an athlete is able to provide post notification must be collected.

    Blood sample provision

    The athlete will be asked to select blood collection equipment and check that it is intact and has not been tampered with. During a ten minute resting period, the athlete may be asked to complete a short questionnaire. A blood collection official will collect the sample in the presence of a DCO and, if applicable, the athlete’s representative. 

    In some instances, the athlete may be required to wait two hours after training or competition before the blood is drawn.

    If the athlete has provided a blood sample, we recommend to the athlete not to do any strenuous exercise using that arm for a minimum of 30 minutes, to minimise bruising at the puncture site.

    Athletes with disabilities

    If an athlete has a disability, they have the right to request a modification to the process; however, the DCO must approve it. Where required, we will provide the athlete with assistance during the sample collection procedure, and modify the procedures.

    If the athlete uses a leg bag they will be required to drain any urine from the leg bag prior to the witnessed sample provision. If possible, the athlete is required to use a clean, sterile catheter. If they choose to use a non-sterile catheter, they do so at their own risk.

    Athlete representative

    If an athlete is under 18 years of age, they are encouraged to have a representative present while they provide a urine sample. The representative will not directly witness the athlete providing the sample unless they specifically request them to do so. If the athlete has a disability and requires a representative, they will not directly witness the athlete providing the sample unless they require their assistance to provide a sample.

    6. Selection of the sample collection kit

    The athlete will select an individually sealed sample collection kit that is intact and has not been tampered with. The athlete will open the kit and confirm that the sample code numbers on the bottles, the lids, and the containers all match. All sample collection kit numbers will be recorded on the Doping Control Test Form.

    7. Splitting and sealing the sample


    The athlete will pour a measured amount of the urine into each of the ‘A’ and ‘B’ labelled bottles, and then secure the kits. They will be asked to leave a small amount of urine in the collection vessel so the DCO can measure the specific gravity.

    Then the athlete will seal both the ‘A’ and ‘B’ bottles. The DCO will verify that the bottles are sealed properly.


    The athlete will place and secure the blood samples in the relevant labelled containers and secure the kits.

    8. Measuring the specific gravity

    The DCO will check the specific gravity of the residual urine left in the collection vessel, and will record the value on the Doping Control Test Form. The athlete should avoid over hydrating; this can happen if they drink too much fluid. If the athlete's sample is too diluted and does not meet the required specific gravity they may be required to provide additional urine samples as directed by the DCO. 

    9. Final paperwork

    The athlete's personal information is recorded on the Doping Control Test Form,
    including contact details.

    The athlete will be asked to provide information on prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, herbal products, food supplements, and any other substances they have used within the last seven (7) days. These are recorded on the Doping Control Test Form.

    Athletes must declare any substance used in the last seven days including any substances for which they have a current and valid Therapeutic Use Exemption. Not declaring use may affect results management and have adverse consequences for the athlete.

    The athlete will also be invited to note comments and concerns about how the session was conducted on the form.

    At the conclusion of the session, the athlete must check that all the information recorded is correct, and sign the doping control paperwork. The paperwork must also be signed by the parties present, including the DCO and, if applicable, Chaperone, the athlete representative and blood collection official. The DCO will provide a copy of the doping control paperwork to the athlete for their records.

    The copy of the doping control paperwork that the laboratory receives does not contain any information that could identify the athlete.

    10. Securing and transporting the sample

    The secure sample(s) and the laboratory copy of the Doping Control Test Form are sent to the laboratory for analysis. There is a strict chain of custody regarding transportation, storage and opening of the sample.

    The laboratory will inspect the samples upon arrival to ensure there is no evidence of tampering. 

    All urine and blood samples will be sent to a WADA-accredited laboratory for analysis or storage for future analysis.

    The analytical procedure

    The laboratory will analyse the ‘A’ sample (urine) or blood sample for the presence of substances on the WADA Prohibited List.

    We can store selected samples in our deep freeze facility for up to ten years and retrospectively analyse the samples to detect prohibited substances and methods, and enforce sanctions against athletes.