Many athletes take marijuana. Far more than you know. But when you see an athlete suspended in the news for failing to pass a drug test, it is easy to think that all drugs are harmful. To clear the air, the two main drugs used by athletes are opioids and cannabis.
Although there are a lot of studies out loud about the adverse effects of these drugs, there are as many studies talking about the benefits of cannabis. Cannabis has not only entertainment benefits but also medicinal benefits.
The cannabis industry has developed so fast that companies involving cannabis and its derivatives have sprung up. These companies even have listed and outstanding shares.
About eight states in the United States have lifted the ban on cannabis for recreational and medical purposes. In contrast, some states have only lifted the ban on the medicinal use of marijuana.
In Canada, people carrying marijuana do not need to worry about jail because it is entirely legal. But for a long time, the issue of athletes using cannabis has been the focus of debate.
Many former professional athletes called for the lifting of the ban on the use of marijuana during competitions. Why? Because most of them have used this drug in their careers and benefited from it.
A question is coming out: Can marijuana help you win in sports? To answer this question, I will not talk nonsense, just say it.
Whether marijuana can play a role in sports?
Marijuana is both harmful and beneficial to athletes. When athletes use cannabis, most people use it for two primary purposes: performance assistance and recovery assistance.
It is worth mentioning that not all cannabis or its products are the same. Some types are only useful for improving performance, while some varieties are suitable for recovery.
Among the weeds that make it useful as a recovery aid is Indica. The higher the Indica content, the stronger the recovery effect of pot. There is something called myrcene in Indica, which is a kind of terpene.
It is this myrcene that has a high degree of sedative and analgesic effects. Although the weed Indica-dominant strain can relieve pain well, it is not as good as a performance enhancer.
Another weed variety that is more suitable for improving performance is Sativa-dominant strain. This strain can help you reach the highest level of concentration and energy.
Using this marijuana cannabis is perfect for exercise classes. Athletes also use low doses of high CBD cannabis to stimulate and clear their minds.
What are the benefits of athletes taking cannabis?
- Marijuana helps reduce inflammation
After intensive exercise, muscle and joint inflammation are common among athletes. Studies have found that high CBD cannabis helps relieve inflammation.
In addition to this, researchers are looking to use this substance to treat autoimmune diseases such as lupus, psoriasis, and Crohn’s disease. However, there is no conclusion yet.
Adam Brous is a professional yoga instructor and the founder of Ganja Guru yoga. He not only uses marijuana in practice but also recommends it to clients. He recommended topical drugs and tinctures to athletes who wanted to take cannabis as an anti-inflammatory drug without taking drugs or smoking.
Another person who proves that high CBD cannabis has anti-inflammatory properties is Jamie Feaster. Before serving as the current vice president of marketing for cannabis distribution startup Eaze, he was a professional pole vaulter.
He said, “As an active athlete, it was a devastating injury and I was open to exploring alternative medicine solutions to help me heal. The CBD lotion really helped me understand the wellness benefits cannabis can provide. CBD is my favorite form, given that it typically delivers the best results when it comes to anti-inflammatory and healing properties.”
- Relieve pain and relieve discomfort
Cannabis has proven to be an effective painkiller. Taking a small amount of marijuana can cure almost any kind of muscle pain. The more significant reason is that opioids (a substitute substance used by some athletes for this purpose) are highly addictive.
The above reasons are why cannabis is more popular among the two. One of the beneficiaries of cannabis painkillers is Christopher Louie, the founder of a cannabis startup called “Made-in-Xiaolin.”
Christopher said, “My passion for cannabis began when it replaced the opiates I was being prescribed for a gunshot wound I sustained in 2003. Since treating with cannabis I’ve learned that not only does it help with the physical pain, it helps me mentally —It has greatly increased my quality of life.”
- Relieve muscle cramps
The study also concluded that cannabis excels in treating muscle cramps. New York University Langone Hospital Neurosurgery Director Erich Anderer explained: “There have been studies in rodents showing some beneficial effect in muscle recovery and reduction of muscle spasm, presumably due to the anti-inflammatory properties the compound possesses.”
However, he continued to mention that this research is still in its early stages and has not widely conducted in humans. He continued on to say, “I don’t know any rats that do CrossFit, so more research needs to be done before we can recommend it for this use with any confidence. The problem is that right now there is no scientific evidence it works in humans.”
- Marijuana improves sleep
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is an excellent sedative. According to some research, it also helps to suppress dreams and reduce sleep apnea.
This benefit makes it a strong recommendation for patients with PTSD. Similarly, people find that CBD can relieve sleep disturbances, and people will show it in dreams.
This disorder is called rapid eye movement sleep disorder. In the form of sleep, rest is very beneficial to athletes, so you can see how cannabis becomes a hero in this situation.
However, using marijuana, as a sedative, has some adverse effects that are hard to ignore. One study showed that adolescents who took THC before going to bed were more sleepy when they woke up. When they wake up, their short-term memory is impaired.
- Cannabis is safer than opioids
Athletes take opioids to relieve pain. But the benefits of cannabis far exceed that of opioids. Opioids can play this role and provide short-term pain relief, but it is nothing more than a trick.
The long-term effects of this substance are terrible. Not only are they addictive, but they can also eventually lead to death.
Marijuana is not as addictive as opioids. Besides, it has other significant uses, including pain relief and anti-inflammatory.
Five best sports for cannabis
Cannabis has many users among the following sports enthusiasts and participants:
Basketball players are prone to fatigue, muscle aches, and pains. These are the scope of application of cannabis. Therefore, many current and former professional basketball players advocate the use of marijuana without being punished by the NBA.
Former NBA Commissioner David Stern also agreed to use the substance.
The executive director of the National Basketball Players Association (NPBA) particularly respects marijuana. He said: “My own view is that there are substantial signs that support its efficacy and the value that it has for us, especially pain management. We’re in talks with the league to see where we can go with it.”
Football and other sports involving high-impact contact bring pain, muscle inflammation, and muscle spasms. If the dosage is appropriate, cannabis can help relieve these symptoms.
Popular former football player Chris Kluwe said in an interview: “Like a lot of other guys, I used cannabis during my playing career because it helps take quite a bit of the pain away. I’ve seen what happened with a lot of the older guys — in terms of the guys who played during the ’70s and ’80s.”
“They were hooked on pain pills, and we all saw how they turned out… In the locker room when guys used to talk about it, it wasn’t about, ‘I’m going to go get blazed and tear up the town. ‘It was like,’Yeah I smoked a bit and passed out on the couch because I felt like crap after practice.'”
Many runners often need performance enhancers, for which they turned their attention to cannabis. After the game, they can use marijuana to help them recover faster.
Their daily activities may not do this, but many people with tight training time often turn to cannabis to reduce stress and increase concentration.
Bodybuilding involves constant tearing of muscles, which can lead to inflammation, which is why many bodybuilders often use cannabis to help them focus, sleep well, and relieve soreness during exercise.
Even the former California governor and bodybuilder, Arnold Schwarzenegger, could not refuse cannabis.
Yoga can help you relax, concentrate, and meditate. Marijuana can help you relax and focus. If not, what better combination is there in sports?
The adverse effects of cannabis
Although cannabis has many positive uses, its adverse effects are apparent and cannot be ignored. Marijuana increases your heart rate, weakens short-term memory, and slows you down by reducing the reaction time.
Other disadvantages include weakened motivation and reduced immunity. Other people taking the drug also reported other shortcomings, such as drowsiness, paranoia, and anxiety the day after receiving it.
Marijuana used to be more popular among musicians, but now it has been embraced by many athletes. Extensive research on the performance-enhancing effects of cannabis is ongoing, but there is no doubt that this substance is a powerful recovery aid.