CBD for Sport: Do Athletes Use CBD?
You might not associate CBD and sport, but thanks to the versatile health benefits of CBD oil, many athletes use it for a whole host of reasons. It can reduce inflammation as well as relieving pain and anxiety, which are all essential for keeping sportspeople active and overcoming those nerves that could otherwise hinder their performance. CBD for sport is a very real thing and this article explores why that is.
Yes, you often see jokes and memes about cannabis and sports. About how it would hinder, rather than improve athletic performance. But let’s forget about those social media posts that look for a cheap laugh, rather than digging into the very real benefits of CBD for athletes.
There are multiple compounds in cannabis, one of the most significant of which is CBD, and that can prove a really important and effective additions to your fitness routine. Want to know how?
Keep reading to find out how CBD for sport can be a winning combination and whether CBD is legal for sports people.
CBD For Sport – How Does it Work?
The way CBD for sports works relates to the endocannabinoid system (ECS) and how it interacts with cannabinoids, such as CBD.
Endocannabinoids are molecules made by your body, whether you use cannabis, CBD or anything similarly derived from the cannabis plant. They bind with endocannabinoid receptors around your body, which form the ECS, and help to regulate a host of functions needed to m maintain your internal balance. This is called homeostasis, and some of those functions include:
- Sensations of fear and pleasure
- Skin and nerve function
- Immune response
- Motor control
- Sleep-wake cycle
- Cell energy regulation
- Body temperature
- Pain perception
If one of the above is threatened, the ECS kicks in and helps to rebalance you. However, if there are deficiencies in the ECS, constant attacks on it, or when the endocannabinoids break down, you can find yourself suffering from a host of chronic issues such as ongoing pain, trouble sleeping, autoimmune conditions, depression and some neurodegenerative disorders.
Thankfully CBD can help the ECS battle back to resume homeostasis. Unlike THC, which is also found in the cannabis plant, it doesn’t get you high, but it does interact with the ECS, stimulating the production of more endocannabinoids and slowing the rate with which they break down.
This helps the ECS use them in a more effective manner, helping to ease the suffering of those chronic conditions.
Benefits of CBD for sport
The benefits of CBD for athletes come thanks to three effects it has on the human body:
- It helps you manage stress
- It reduces inflammation
- It softens the signalling of pain to your brain
The is why CBD for sport is a natural fit. Let’s explore these benefits more closely:
1) CBD for Sports Recovery
A sports person’s sleep routine is essential to their recovery from the rigours through which they put their body. However, the nature of what they do can also hinder sleep. Stress, anxiety and pain all knock your sleep cycle out of kilter and, with the pressure of reaching peak fitness at the right time, nerves ahead of a big event and pain from pushing their bodies to the limit, athletes can suffer from disrupted sleep.
CBD can reduce all three of these elements, which helps sports people regain their natural sleep cycle and can recover properly before the next day’s activities. It is also a better option than many sleeping tablets, which work in a manner that can damage your natural sleep cycle, causing issues in the long run. This is one of the many benefits of CBD for sports recovery.
Another reason to use CBD for athletes’ recovery is that it can reduce the concentration in the blood of cortisol, which is the body’s main stress hormone.
You produce cortisol when you exercise or conduct any physical activity. Excess cortisol can cause you to store more fat, can suppress your immune system and can lead to tissue breakdown. This can all be disastrous when recovering from a workout or injury. Taking CBD helps to avert these symptoms.
2) CBD and Inflammation
You will always find some acute inflammation from exercise or injury, but chronic inflammation can be very damaging. It can cause chronic illnesses like cancer, diabetes, arthritis and autoimmune disease.
There have been studies into the effect of CBD on inflammation, and they have found that applying CBD cream topically can reduce it and without any side effects.
When dealing with your inflammation after a workout, CBD cream can be an effective and safe alternative to popping pills.
3) CBD for Pain Management
Another reason athletes take all manner of over the counter medicines is to combat pain, which comes as a natural response to extreme physical activity. Once again, CBD can provide an alternative to these pills.
It acts to alter pain signalling in the brain, making it much more manageable for the sports person. An additional benefit is that CBD is not addictive, unlike some stronger painkillers that a doctor may prescribe for an elite athlete.
This is one of the major benefits of CBD for athletes.
4) CBD for Pre-workout
The role of CBD for sport isn’t just after the event. It can proves effective for aiding performance when taken in advance. It minimises muscle burn and curbs fatigue, alleviating discomfort and helping you push yourself further. This is ideal if you indulge in endurance sports.
It also helps you focus, which is essential when trying to get in the zone and shut out crowds and other competitors.
5) CBD for Appetite Control
Diet forms a major part of an athlete’s preparation and CBD helps with this by aiding appetite control. This is one of the ways it supports the ECS.
It works to regulate the hunger messages coming from the brain, relaxing and calming you and ensuring you don’t feel the need to snack unnecessarily.
6) CBD for Anxiety
Research shows that CBD can help to reduce the effects of anxiety. This is of benefit to sports people who are under pressure to perform from themselves, coaches, fans and more.
It has been shown to reduce symptoms in sufferers of social anxiety disorder and even PTSD, in addition to steadying nerves in all manner of different people.
A sports person with reduced levels of nerves and anxiety has the best chance of giving their best performance, and CBD can help facilitate that.
Is CBD Legal for Athletes?
Before taking CBD for sport, you do need to know about the legalities. UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) recognises that CBD is not harmful and, as such, permits it to be used in sport. This is backed up by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which allows it if it contains 0.3% THC or less.
This means that you can enjoy the benefits of CBD for athletes without having to worry about getting into trouble with the sport’s governing body.
Does CBD Show Up On A Drug Test?
CBD does not show up on a drug test. They will show up THC, but as full-spectrum CBD oils contain 0.3% THC or less, this is not a concern.
To reduce the risk of receiving a false positive for THC, you should use a broad-spectrum CBD or isolates. This protects you from any issues.
Best Type of CBD for sport and athletes
There’s a debate over the efficacy of full-spectrum CBD extracts and isolates. Here’s how to distinguish between these two products — and which is better in certain scenarios.
Different Forms of CBD for Athletes
If you’ve decided to use CBD for sport, here is a guide to the forms of CBD you might find.
1) CBD Oil for Athletes
CBD oil is the most common way to take CBD for athletes. Apply the CBD under your tongue using a dropper. After holding it your mouth for up to a minute, the CBD will absorb into your system.
You should notice an effect in between 15 and 30 minutes and it should last up to six hours.
2) CBD Balm for Athletes
CBD balms are used for muscle strains, inflammation, and injuries. Look for those made of organic ingredients to ensure you get the best quality product.
Reapply CBD topicals as often as you need. When the effects wear off, you can add more without any harm to your body.,
Ready for CBD for Sport?
CBD for sport is a legitimate and effective method of helping you recover and perform more productively. From helping you focus to reducing anxiety, aiding sleep, calming inflammation and soothing pain, there is a CBD option for you. Shop now for your chance to gain these amazing advantages for your sporting life