With contact sports resulting in over 600 thousand injuries a year in the USA and estimated as the fourth largest cost to major sports associations, managing damage to players and speeding recovery is incredibly important.
So, how is CBD oil currently used in professional sports and what examples are there of the difference it has made?
Is CBD used in professional sports?
Simply put, yes.
A recent ruling by the World Association Against Doping said that CBD is no longer a listed substance when it comes to use in games. To be more specific, this has resulted in Cannabidiol – the key helpful element in CBD – in being safe, but natural cannabinoids such as marijuana or other ‘artificial highs’ are still not allowed to be used.
While this is a positive move for player health and takes a progressive attitude to alternative means of treatment, the ruling still his treats CBD as a borderline substance. If players are found to have taken CBD that is in breach of the legally enforceable statistics of 0.2% THC or that contains other elements, they can still be punished for doping and receive a fine or suspension.
How have things changed
A perfect example can be found in the NBA’s recent decision to allow its players to use CBD as part of their pain treatment recovery process in 2018 before the WADA legalisation earlier this year.
This allows them to take advantage of CBD’s potential to help the management and relief of pain. The cannabidiol present in CBD can bind to the body’s CB1 and CB2 receptors which can help with the management of physical pain and the production of serotonin, that can help lift the mood when trying to manage injury.
This has led to a positive reaction from many professionals in a country where an opioid epidemic is ravaging the population and athletes can easily find themselves forced to consume painkillers in order to retain their careers, causing long-term damage and burnout. Players such as Paul Pierce went so far as to launch a line of CBD infused products when CBD allowed him to fight a painkiller and sleep medication addiction describing it as an ‘active healing agent’ that can help supplement other therapies and help make the removal of one element easier.