With the Summer Olympics just a few months away, Nike and Adidas have begun unveiling some of the new apparel for athletes competing in London. Both companies have tried to improve their equipment by focusing on sustainability and making the uniforms out of recycled fabrics, but I wonder if some of the other innovations are crossing the line.

These athletic apparel companies are making uniforms that lead to faster times threatening to blur the line between high-tech outfits and illegal performance-enhancing methods. Is this ethical?

At the 2008 Olympics, Nike unveiled its state-of-the-art Flywire technology. Inspired by the architectural elegance of suspension bridges, Flywire gives runners dynamic movement of the foot while significantly cutting down weight. Starting out as a running aid, it has now been successfully incorporated into sports equipment such as basketball shoes, tennis shoes, cleats, and even shirts and shorts.

Adidas is outfitting Olympians from Great Britain and Australia with skin-like uniforms, allowing for dynamic and freer movement. Australian gold medal hurdler Sally Pearson remarked that she felt almost naked when she first put on her official team uniform.

In Beijing four years ago, Nike created cooling vests for long-distance runners to combat the incredible heat and humidity in the Bird's Nest. One of the athletes using the vests, Shalane Flanagan, wound up winning the bronze medal in the 10,000-meter run. In a similar case, Kenenisa Bekele, arguably the greatest long distance runner ever, completed a historic double-double: he won the 5000- and 10,000-meter runs in Beijing after doing the same in Athens four years prior. In Beijing, he was wearing Nike Flywire spikes. Little things like this make a world of a difference on the Olympic stage.

Advancement of technology in the sporting world is inevitable, but we've gotten to the point where stellar Olympic performances call for equipment that borders on science fiction.

In February 2008, Speedo unveiled its LZR suit, a full-body swimsuit that increases buoyancy and allows better oxygen flow to the muscles. Nearly everyone who wore that suit in Beijing wound up on the medal podium. Records were being rewritten nearly every day; the Fédération Internationale de Natation (International Swimming Federation) wound up banning it to increase parity in the sport.

So where do we as sports fans draw the line between outstanding performances and superhuman ones? Should we censure any runner who sports the latest innovation in shoes and apparel or the swimmer who is testing the latest swimsuit? What about Adidas' current construction of special soccer balls that enhances ball rotation and speed in World Cup games? When do we say these innovations are too much?

Should we institute a minimalist model, where we strip down every sport to the bare essentials so we can determine which athlete best exemplifies the Olympic motto of "Faster, Higher, Stronger"? That all depends on what we want to get out of sports. We have to answer whether we watch them for the storylines—to learn about the athletes on and off the field—or simply for the sake of performance, standards be damned. I don't know where the line starts, but come London in August, we'll see where it finishes.