Why CBD Is Quickly Becoming a Recovery Tool for Athletes
As the acceptance of cannabis continues to grow, CBD oil is becoming a go-to for athletes due to the cannabinoid’s impact on muscle recovery and inflammation.
Published on June 11, 2019

Athletes who maintain vigorous workout schedules are prone to bouts of pain and inflammation in both the muscles and joints. Inflammation, either caused by the wear and tear of strenuous exercise or injury, can put a damper on both the ability and motivation to maintain a stringent workout regimen, so many successful athletes develop a system of pain and inflammation management. Commonly, many athletes, including ultrarunner Todd Hockensmith of San Diego, California, turn to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen for relief.

“If you’re doing 80- or 100-mile weeks, ibuprofen is kind of a way of life,” Hockensmith says.

NSAIDs can provide relief, but they also carry risks. The FDA warned in 2005 that NSAIDs increase the chance of having a heart attack or stroke. And research has shown that these over-the-counter drugs can cause kidney problems and damage to the gastrointestinal tract. 

Today, many people are looking for more natural remedies for pain and inflammation, and are turning to CBD products such as Xwerks CBD Oil for pain relief. 


CBD Oil for Pain Management

Cannabidiol, or CBD, was first isolated from the cannabis sativa plant in 1940 and was originally thought to be biologically inactive. It’s one of more than 100 chemical compounds from the plant known as cannabinoids. The most well-known cannabinoid is delta-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the psychoactive compound largely responsible for the feeling of euphoria, or high, often experienced when using cannabis.

But unlike THC, CBD is non-intoxicating. In fact, cannabidiol is said to lessen the euphoric effects of THC.  Because CBD can be used without experiencing drugged-out effects, it is a better way to integrate the medicinal benefits of cannabis into new cannabis consumers’ lives. Through selective breeding of marijuana varieties, strains of cannabis have been developed to have high amounts of CBD with little or no THC at all. Products made from full-spectrum hemp extracts, such as Xwerks CBD Oil and CBD Oil Capsules, can provide CBD and other phytocannabinoids that can positively affect health and wellness.

Research shows that CBD oil benefits the body by reducing pain and inflammation. Additional studies have shown that CBD is well tolerated and causes few side effects. Hockensmith finds that using CBD oil immediately after a run or workout helps him avoid and treat inflammation and the pain it causes.

“It definitely helps with inflammation,” he says of the benefits of CBD oil. “I do a lot of running. I’m training for a 100-mile race right now. You can’t just keep hammering in ibuprofen and all that stuff. I don’t want to rot my gut. And CBD gives me the same benefits.”


Other Benefits of CBD

CBD oil can also benefit athletes by slowing the breakdown of muscle mass and help athletes to build more muscle. Preliminary research published in by the Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research suggests CBD works directly with the endocannabinoid system to interfere with cortisol, a hormone that reduces protein synthesis and actively inhibits tissue growth. The same study also found that CBD has a sedative effect, an advantage not lost on Hockensmith, who says that CBD oil benefits his recovery from tough workouts by helping him to sleep well and get the rest he needs.

“I can take the CBD tincture and just crash,” he says. “And wake up completely rested and ready to hammer again.”


CBD in Sports Gaining Acceptance

The use of CBD oil by athletes is gaining acceptance in the world of sports. In 2017, the World Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from its list of substances banned for use by athletes. And in 2018, North American Premier Basketball and the Big3 basketball league both announced that athletes would be permitted to use CBD. Hip-hop legend Ice Cube, co-founder of the Big3, told Forbes that allowing CBD was the right thing to do.

“We look at the use of CBD as compassion for our players,” said Ice Cube. “These guys put their bodies on the line for us and the fans to entertain us with their talent. And as they’re hurting and in pain and there’s something out there that can help them, that doesn’t enhance their performance or intoxicates them…. To me, it’s simple compassion.”

When Ice Cube says CBD is compassion, who are we to say otherwise? Athletes deserve the right to take care of their body however they see fit — just like everyone else.


This article was created in partnership with Xwerks CBD. For more on the company, visit their website here.

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A.J. Herrington
A.J. Herrington is a freelance writer focusing on cannabis news, business, and culture and has written for publications including High Times, Sensi, and HEMP. When he's not banging away at the keyboard, you'll probably find him tending to his plants in the garden.
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