Professional sports bodies have always been very strict as to what medications can and cannot be used. And this is truer than ever in the case of the NFL, the largest American football league in the United States. When it comes to cannabinoids, the league is very clear: they cannot be used. But more and more NFL players want this ban reconsidered, especially when it comes to CBD.
ANDL CBD AND SPORTS RECOVERY
There are two main reasons why athletes are prohibited from using certain substances. The first is to prevent them from taking something that could unfairly enhance their performance. The second is to prevent them from taking something that is considered illegal. CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid that is legal in much of the US, but due to its association with THC and cannabis, it is frowned upon in the NFL.
Some players are trying to change this. For example, former NFL player Jake Plummer supports CBD use and is running a campaign to promote it. American football is a violent sport whose players often suffer chronic injuries throughout their careers. As such, it’s not unusual for them to become dependent on powerful painkillers – even after they stop playing professionally. Plummer is one of these players, but instead of taking strong sedatives, he ingests CBD oil and applies CBD oil to his back and arms. According to him, it eases his pain and even allows him to play 2-3 games with younger players before going numb again. He is just one of many, both active and retired, who believe that CBD could be an effective alternative.
“At university there were people who drank Percocets all the time and drank beer,” he says. “It was crazy. I did it once, but the after effects, the next day, that feeling, I hated it. It made me feel disconnected. In 10 years (in the NFL), I had about 20, when I was leaving a game and He said, ‘I need to get on this flight because sitting here hurts like hell.’ But if I had CBD, I would have preferred it.”
“Have we found the panacea? Do we have the cure? I don’t know,” adds Plummer. “But I’d like to find out.”
PRESPONSIBILITY TO INVESTIGATE THE CBD
Plummer and the other players who know about the potential of CBD know that the NFL is not going to listen to them. That’s why they’ve come together to support a cause known as “When Bright Lights Fade” (when the lights go out), in order to raise funds for CBD research. The ultimate goal is to fund clinical trials and assess how CBD can be harnessed to treat concussion and chronic traumatic encephalopathy – very common problems in the sport.
With further research, CBD could be part of the treatment of sports injuries. More studies are needed, but things are promising for CBD. Let’s hope these players are successful in their campaign.