Science of Love, Sex, and Babies

Did Tiger win by cheating? Hint: testosterone

Posted in news by jenapincott on December 3, 2009


Earlier this year, I wrote about Tiger Woods after he lost the World Gold Championship. My theory — perhaps a stretch — was that Tiger’s testosterone was down. He said he had been spending a lot of time with his pregnant wife Elin and their two-year-old daughter. In February Elin gave birth to a son.

All this downtime on the homefront suggests, at least to this observer, that Tiger was hormonally challenged. In the months preceding and following a baby’s birth, fathers’ testosterone levels are lower. Lower testosterone levels make a man less aggressive, less focused, less competitive — and more agreeable and responsive. High testosterone levels have the opposite effect.

Later this year Tiger rebounded to win the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the Memorial Tournament, the WGB-Bridgestone Invitational, the BMW Championship, and the 2009 Presidents Cup this. And now it emerges that during all this winning he had been cheating — on his wife.

Is there a connection here? Again, it may be a stretch, but did Tiger’s philandering contribute to a testosterone surge that helped his game? Lots of illicit sex, after all, could be linked to high testosterone levels. So did cheating help him win? Or did his success and the resulting testosterone-high spur him to cheat?

Or was it a vicious cycle: cheating leading to winning leading to cheating, and so on?

71 Responses

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  1. Edward Palomo said, on December 4, 2009 at 10:54 am

    so now I know why sportsmen like Tiger and Manny Pacquiao are aggressive…lol

  2. wisdomsson said, on December 4, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    People need to leave Tiger Woods alone, He is or never will be the perfect image of any thing. He is normal man who made a decision for his life, no matter the reaction after the decision.

    • gina said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:33 am

      not claiming (nor would I ever about any human being) that he is/was perfect… problem is he is a “role model”!!! whether he wanted to be or not… and he had lots of young folks looking up to him… yes I know its the parents job to make sure that young children DO NOT look up to athletes, but as we all know there are lots of parents out there not doing their job :(

  3. T Fredericks said, on December 4, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    I think your on to something haha, the record doesn’t lie. his ego was feeling good and the great dion sanders once said “look good, feel good, play good”. Play on playa
    Toriano
    thedish22.wordpress.com

  4. Bill Jones said, on December 4, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    Maybe…quite possibly…don’t know for sure…wait for it…none of the above!?

  5. teenagegeek said, on December 4, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    Cool idea.

    I wonder how valid it is though – peopel like him would look at you funny.

    Cheating sportmens the world over know have the perfect excuse.

    ‘I did it to improve my game, honey’.

    http://lunckyinc.wordpress.com/

    x

    • gina said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:31 am

      :D very funny!

  6. miriam said, on December 4, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    DO NOT PLAY because tvpeople our watching you

  7. miriam said, on December 4, 2009 at 2:02 pm

    NO Tiger didnot win bu cheating so what big deal he isa man

  8. ifymommy said, on December 4, 2009 at 4:42 pm

    Yes, most men prefer blonde but it all depends on individual preferences.

  9. shoutabyss said, on December 4, 2009 at 4:42 pm

    I think you make a darn good point. How is the athlete that remains monogamous supposed to compete with the cheater? I say ban him for life!

  10. antivirusnews said, on December 4, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    No, i do not think so. Every man has different periods in its life…

    • shoutabyss said, on December 4, 2009 at 9:43 pm

      Really? I’ve never gone through an infidelity period in my entire life. Weird.

  11. c0smo said, on December 4, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    NO. He’s not cheat. This guy got luck. I think.

  12. The Hedonistic Pleasureseeker said, on December 4, 2009 at 10:05 pm

    I need someone to show me a study that would lead one to conclude high testosterone levels = good golf.

    Golf is not boxing. It’s not an aggressive sport at all. It doesn’t even require that much “concentration” in the traditional sense. Golf is a zen sport, and an endurance sport. One would think some estrogen might help with the endurance.

  13. Richard said, on December 4, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    It shows us that Tiger Woods is a man like all other. Temped and tried. Even Jesus was in all points temped, yet without sin. This is why God gave Him up as the perfect sacrifice for our sins. The only way we can resist temptation is to stay very close to God. Our flesh is very weak, but The Spirit is willing and wants to help us, if we indeed want help.
    May God be with Tiger Woods during this very difficult time.

    • gina said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:36 am

      EXCELLENT reply Richard!!! You are correct.

  14. Karma Doc said, on December 4, 2009 at 10:55 pm

    So much BS… concerning his cheating, there is no proof.

    • gina said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:36 am

      LOL!!! now thats funny Doc!

  15. Rex Kramer said, on December 4, 2009 at 11:15 pm

    I know your post is somwhat tongue-in-cheek…but illicit sex raises testosterone levels? Surely you jest. All these athletes taking steroids and all they had to do was get some? I guess all monks are women by the time they hit 30. Rethink your science, Jena…

    • jenapincott said, on December 5, 2009 at 3:15 pm

      Hi, Rex — You’re right that the post is tongue-in-cheek, and you’re right that illicit sex can’t necessarily raise testosterone levels. It may, though; it’s an interesting question which I why I posed it. There’s a link, not necessarily causal.

  16. Darrell said, on December 4, 2009 at 11:55 pm

    Good job Richard. Tiger screwed up like most of us do in our lifes, but we do have someone to go to for forgiveness. Hopefully he will and his wife will also be able to forgive and they can move forward if God allows it.

    May God Bless!

  17. ApresSki said, on December 5, 2009 at 12:02 am

    This article is simply playing devil’s advocate period!
    They need to knock it off and just let Tiger get his act together . . . privately!!!!

  18. Nikki said, on December 5, 2009 at 12:06 am

    hight testosterone does not just make us more aggressive, it is also responsible for thinking more clearly, acting more risky with higher precision in risk calculation (basically less emotionally influenced by estrogen) and makes us more externally and goal focused. this is true irrespective of gender..

    I think your thesis is not only refreshing but a good example of the deeper connections in life and how our biology influences us… very insightful! nice, think i might use this as an example with clients

    thx :)

    • jenapincott said, on December 5, 2009 at 3:18 pm

      Thanks, Nikki! Yes, our biology does influence us and I think it’s interesting to look at Tiger’s situation through this lens….

  19. Nalin Caldera said, on December 5, 2009 at 1:11 am

    Was Tiger Woods Cheating…
    Why are people of the media so bothered as it is a personal matter with him, his wife & God. Today the world has nothing to do but gossip and if you are truly a God fearing and loving person you would pray him and his family than see it break up? Would any one enjoy if it happend? .. I would like to compose this poem below

    Tiger Woods a great golf professional who stands tall
    Who has won many titles and has entertained us all
    We need to pray for his life and safety than gossip around
    Are we all honest to our selves and could we stand our ground
    No no one is pure or honest as we at some time cross the lines
    And these things happen to all in present and past times
    I pray that Tiger will be able to overcome this situation soon
    And concentrate on his profession and fine tune
    What all of us need today is not the media but to be closer to God
    because He is in charge of Tiger, you and me as he is Lord
    Nalin Caldera – Sri Lanka 5-12-09

  20. Tim said, on December 5, 2009 at 1:28 am

    I agree I am to old now……..but I remember when I was in my prime if I didn’t get it enough, I would have wet dreams, my balls would swell and ache…….blue Balls………if I had tigers money I would had done the same thing,,,,,,,,,

  21. Declex said, on December 5, 2009 at 2:22 am

    Well said richard. you hit the nail on the head. all the best tiger.

  22. My Social Relevance said, on December 5, 2009 at 3:43 am

    he should just have come out right away. he just made it worse by delaying

  23. John said, on December 5, 2009 at 8:41 am

    tiger is human. tiger’s problems started when his dad died. no one there to keep him on the right warrior path. also, he married way too young. money and world travel contribute as well. if i was him i’d probably have done the same thing. except for getting married. roids? i hope not. he is the greatest golfer to come down the pike since king jack. i hope all of this doesn’t affect his game. golf needs him. we need him.

  24. demogodz said, on December 5, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    He’s soo worried about saving his image to save his money. Right now, he should consider trading in the golf-cart for a mean dirt bike, get bombed, and go tear up Pebble Beach !!
    Get a terrific Mug Shot photo after he gets the cops mad so they beat him up, and spends a year in Rehab (vacation)
    so he can work on his movie and book rights !!! He’ll … make even more money !!! Be even more famous !!! and he’ll be able to relax that squeaky clean image of his and be the international badboy playboy he really wants to be.
    Enter the new, Born to be Bad, Tiger

    • pink said, on December 5, 2009 at 7:49 pm

      Dear Demogodz~ Geeze ! You took the words right outta my brain ! I can’t wait to watch Tiger on next seasons Dr. Drew Sex Rehab ! But more realistically speaking~ to men in defense of bad behavior~ When you get married, you abide by the rules of a well-known invention~ Its called a ‘zipper’~ and somewhere in the vows it should read : From this moment on, You my Wife will be the only female touching, holding, sucking, licking, or simply looking at ~ MY DICK !!! (can any man actually abide by that?)

  25. paulfdavis said, on December 5, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    Insightful article and excellent provocate questions!

    Undoubtedly a man’s libido is tightly linked to his success in life. Hence kings of old left the eunuchs in charge of the treasury knowing that they had little testosterone and hormonal drive to feed their ego and libido.

    The reverse is true with men with raging hormones and healthy testosterone. There is a drive to achieve and be sexually virile.

    Simply said it’s hard to play ball well without balls of your own. Moreover it’s a bit difficult to possess the drive to hit a homerun in the boardroom if you can’t hit a homerun first in the bedroom.

    http://www.PaulFDavis.com – life coach for success, author and worldwide speaker

    info @ PaulFDavis.com

  26. Kay Smith-Agunwa said, on December 5, 2009 at 2:14 pm

    Why are people so upset about Tiger’s infidelity, then they are about him almost being killed with a Steel Golf Club by a jealous nut? His wife should be charged with attempted murder. If it were the other way around, you can bet your life, Tiger would have be handcuffed and arrested immediately. Domestic violence, regardless who does it is a crime. If I were Tiger, I could never trust anyone who tried to kill me. I know, most people, especially women are saying he deserved it because he cheated, however I disagree. I am a woman, and I know how it feel to be betrayed, (been there, done that), It took me years of experience to realized that God did not create man to have one mate for life, especially, if he gets married young. Most men get married in their 20’s and 30’s, start having babies, working hard career wise or otherwise,etc., and on the other coin,many women today have no respect for each other. When they meet a married man, they do not care.The rest is history..I believe the reason the public hasn’t seen Tiger, is because his handsome face is disfigured. I Pray for him and hope he recovers and still remain the greatest golfer the world has ever known.

  27. rexrants said, on December 5, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    Jena, did you delete my post?

  28. poverty_dieter said, on December 5, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    Oh I don’t know….maybe it’s the testosterone thing, or maybe he was just really tired around the birth of his second child, like any dad would be?

  29. menagemontage said, on December 5, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    I totally agree with you. Actually my father had said when Tiger first announced that he was getting married that his game would go down hill. Marriage would lead to struggles on the golf course and eventually he would find a way to get back to the top of his game. Looks like he found his way

  30. Karon said, on December 5, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    Hm mm Have anyone noticed the first girl was on tool academy first season. I guessed she herself is a tool.

  31. sara said, on December 5, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    well,did tou hear that tiger woods got in a car reck he got really injurd i dont know how it happend but he was really injured!!!!

  32. W. T. Stambaugh said, on December 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm

    New at http://iamthewill.wordpress.com/

    Tiger Woods’s Affair: Is It News? You Make the Call

  33. trinaramirez said, on December 5, 2009 at 5:37 pm

    T.W. aint that pretty.

  34. tigercheated said, on December 5, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Women….drugs….what’s next to come out??

    tigercheated.wordpress.com

  35. lifeaftereighty said, on December 5, 2009 at 7:09 pm

    Of course, testosterone makes for better golf – better everything. That’s no secret.

  36. kat77777 said, on December 5, 2009 at 7:15 pm

    I think Tiger what tiger did is humiliating to him and his fans

  37. tigercheated said, on December 5, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    If he cheated on his wife, maybe he cheated the game. I sure hope that he didn’t use growth hormones to cheat the game of golf as he was already the best!!

  38. kolawole said, on December 5, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    Tiger Wood need some time to think. He has been on the spotligth for so long. Leave him alone for some time to think about his life and how to re-shape it.

  39. pandabox33 said, on December 5, 2009 at 9:09 pm

    Hm interesting theory.

    http://pandabox33.wordpress.com

  40. CoolRandomGuy said, on December 5, 2009 at 9:56 pm

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    Sorry I wont do that again…

    • gina said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:47 am

      very neat cool random guy!

  41. bebe said, on December 6, 2009 at 12:38 am

    I think this is reaching a little. Maybe interesting, but reaching.

  42. Nick Wright said, on December 6, 2009 at 6:08 am

    According to http://wp.me/pJmrx-s more than half of subscribers to a UK married dating agency are golfers!

  43. jack said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:05 am

    Not really sure about this

  44. Boring Life Rob said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:32 am

    He won even before he was married, this is a far stretch but creative ;)

  45. Corve DaCosta said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:59 am

    interesting take on the issue…

  46. Flower Boy said, on December 6, 2009 at 1:01 pm

    mmm, I always trying to find new ways to improve my golf swing. Not sure the wife would approve of this method mind!

  47. TEStazyk said, on December 6, 2009 at 3:00 pm

    LOL. If what you are saying is true, we may need to monitor the private lives of government leaders more closely. It’s scary to think that the outcome of Copenhagen could hinge on passivity or aggreession based on testosterone? But then, hasn’t it always been that way?

  48. BadWitch said, on December 6, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    All the h.s. coaches that tell their guys to stay away from their girlfriends before the Big Game had a funny way of dealing with the cycle, I always thought. It always looked to me (right through my first Reaql Jobs post-college) that the more they used it, the more they raised their own levels (like drugs ) and needed more. …We just talked about hook ups and possible addiction…that’s on my mind…

    http://GoodWitchBadWitch.com

  49. metalodyssey said, on December 6, 2009 at 6:35 pm

    Oh, I get it. Tiger Woods is above the law and no one is supposed to have a negative opinion on him. That is the way it is supposed to be in our society… leave millionaire and billionaire athletes alone. Uh, huh. If I drove my car into a tree head on, heck, I would still be in jail today. Why? I am not a millionaire or billionaire athlete… or a politician either. A very intriguing post this is indeed!

  50. Steve said, on December 6, 2009 at 7:24 pm

    I feel bad for Tiger. His story is very simular to Kobe Bryant it’s like they have to perfect, and then theres all these people who make them seem like they have to be this or that to be in the incrowd. It must be hard. Money can’t buy happiness.

  51. tired of crap said, on December 6, 2009 at 9:04 pm

    STAND UP FOR MORALITY PLEASE!!
    I WISH people would stop saying Tiger made a MISTAKE and stop making excuses for him!!! HE KNEW WHAT HE WAS DOING AND HE DID IT ANY WAY. That is not considered a mistake. I do not believe his wife would call this a mistake. He is trying to hide his dirty deeds in the dark– as alll cheaters do!! Well, there is a saying in the Bible that says what is done in the “DARK IT WILL COME TO THE LIGHT” People need to learn and know this– because ALL CHEATERS SEEM TO FOLLOW THE SAME MO—BILL,SHAQ, JOHN-E, steve mcnair, ect.

    Now Tiger wants to keep it a “private” family(???) matter that “IT” may not be considered apart of the family by Mrs. Woods. Well, what about what Mrs. Woods his wife wants or wanted?? She probably wanted a faithful husband, she probably wanted a quite night and a loving truthful husband. SHE PROBABLY WANTED TIGER TO END IT BEFORE IT GOT THIS FAR!!! What about what she wants. He knew he was hurting her and he continued to do his dirt. The Universe has a way of giving us our just desserts.

    To ALL THOSE WHO SAY TIGER MADE A MISTAKE– PLEASE THINK TWICE ABOUT THAT!! IT WAS NOT A MISTAKE– WITH TWO OR MORE WOMEN– IT WAS NOT A MISTAKE WHEN HE TRIED TO LIE AND HIDE THE TRUTH…

  52. ronald said, on December 6, 2009 at 10:59 pm

    hahaha! i really find it hard to feel bad for these celebrities who are totally incapable of dealing with real life situations.

  53. drake22 said, on December 7, 2009 at 6:04 am

    Problem I have with all of this is that Tiger Woods, whether he likes it of not, is paid a tremendous amount of money for playing a sport that is broadcast worldwide. He reaps the rewards of sponsorship monies paid to him by large companies who rely on his public image to sell products. So contrary to may people I feel he owes it to the public to come out and admit all of his “transgressions” so to speak….rather than hide behind the walls of his compound and make statements through his website.

  54. ErikJ said, on December 7, 2009 at 8:35 am

    Yes I think getting some action on the side helps men retain there testosterone levels. Men need to be men and get action from whomever they feel. Tiger is the wolrds best golfer he should be allowed to do whomever he wants cause he’s tiger woods

    Erik
    http://www.freefor15.com

  55. Fiyola Hoosen said, on December 12, 2009 at 8:41 pm

    This is a really cool theory …..now if there were some better way to test this then just the actions of horny unfaithful tiger!!

  56. mike said, on December 17, 2009 at 9:38 am

    baaad no goood he should have called it a day before going that far rather use all means possible to end craving for more women

  57. Karenerly said, on December 18, 2009 at 8:32 pm

    Generally I do not post on blogs, but I would love to mention that this post extremely forced me to try and do therefore! really nice post.

  58. Jennifer said, on March 29, 2010 at 12:01 pm

    Although this theory does seem like kind of a stretch, there’s actually some real merit here… I remember reading how some male species develop higher paternal and monogamous behaviors when their testosterone decreases….. perhaps Tiger did need to get his manhood stirrin to win a game? I don’t know…. it’s very interesting…

  59. […] really what we’re looking for, is it? Just some food for thought. Related article: Did Tiger win by cheating? Hint: testosterone  References:  (1) The Female Brain, by Louanne Brizendine (2006) (2) An Introduction to […]

  60. Jon said, on January 28, 2011 at 1:38 am

    I am only replying to say that I think it’s silly that there is 70 replies to think and so few replies to the other one.

    Tiger Woods is a normal guy like everyone else. Maybe he is a douche, maybe you think he is great. He is a golfer, not a role model, and not the reason why your boyfriend may or may not have cheated on you.


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