Researchers Are Paying Weed Smokers to Get High and Exercise (for Science, Of Course)
You’ll be contributing the scientific findings on the very important subject of cannabis and sports. Plus, it’s paid.
Published on December 10, 2021

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Researchers are looking for people to join a study examining the effects of cannabis use on working out. There's just one catch: You need to live in the Boulder, Colorado area. 

As reported by Newsweek, the University of Colorado-Boulder is seeking men and women between the ages of 21 and 40 who “have experience using cannabis concurrently with exercise” for a “Study on Physical Activity and Cannabis Effects” [they’re using the sick acronym SPACE].

You’ll be paid up to $100 for your pains. Here’s all the information you need to sign up.

“We want to understand how varying levels of cannabinoids like tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) can impact factors associated with regular exercise, such as enjoyment, motivation, and pain,” states the call for participants.

Those selected for the study will have to visit the campus up to three times — and each time, they must come high. The first session will consist of a baseline survey and short treadmill run, and the subsequent sessions will feature more questionnaires, 30-minute treadmill runs, and blood draws. For the last two get-togethers, participants will even be picked up in a mobile lab and driven to the research facilities. 

Plus — and we know this is your utmost concern — conclusions from the study could serve a real purpose when it comes to cannabis science. Athletes have long been among the public figures most punished for their use of the drug. That’s beginning to change, as certain professional leagues announce significant changes to their policies surrounding use of the substance. In fact, the NFL stopped suspending players for positive cannabis tests in 2020, and even announced earlier this year that the league would be researching the effects of medical marijuana on its players. The more information we have on how cannabis helps our bodies pre-, during, and post-exercise, the more motivation pro leagues will have to remove penalties for athletes that are just trying to help their bodies make it through a brutal, physically high-impact career. 

As cannabis activism expands, those who utilize weed for physical activity have become ever-more visible, too. One early appearance of so-called “jock joint” efforts were California’s 420 Games. That series kicked off in 2014 with an inaugural five-kilometer run through San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park for cannabis consumers hoping to show the world that they weren’t (all) couch-locked. 

Nowadays, former pro athletes are among some of cannabis’ best advocates, capitalizing on their household names to dispel misinformation about the plant’s effects. NBA legend Chris Webber headed the team that opened an 180,000 square-foot Detroit facility in September that plans to train the next generation of cannabis entrepreneurs of color. And countless former players now have their own line of cannabis products — or lines, plural, in the case of former NFL running back Ricky Williams

Are you a cannabis-consuming athlete yourself, located in the general Boulder area? You might want to throw your hat into the research ring on how the plant affects our ability to triumph on the track, field, court, trail ... well, you get the picture. 

Sign up for the study here.

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Caitlin Donohue
Caitlin Donohue is a Bay Area-raised, Mexico City-based cannabis writer and author of She Represents: 44 Women Who Are Changing Politics and the World. Her weekly show Crónica on Radio Nopal explores Mexican marijuana culture and politics in the prohibition era. Follow Caitlin on IG @byrdwatch.
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