CBD and Sports


CBD’s therapeutic value has a good reputation in the health-and-wellness industry. Known for its calming and relaxing effects, many people want to get their hands on CBD products.

Sports enthusiasts, including athletes, are turning to CBD to relieve muscle soreness and post-workout discomfort. While there are prescription medications to ease the discomfort that comes with training and competitions, they often cause unpleasant side effects.

For this reason, athletes are turning to natural products, including CBD sports products, to relieve the discomfort and improve their overall well being. The CBD industry is growing exponentially, and companies are becoming more innovative every day, with some companies manufacturing CBD engineered specifically for athletes.

Perhaps you’re wondering what CBD is, and what are the benefits to athletes of CBD. Take a look!

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, popularly known as CBD, is one of over a 100 already-identified cannabinoids that occur naturally in the cannabis plant (marijuana and hemp). While many people dread hearing the word marijuana, it is important to know that CBD is non-psychoactive. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), another well-known cannabinoid, is the compound responsible for the high associated with marijuana. 

CBD and the Endocannabinoid System

The human body has a complex cell-signaling system called the endocannabinoid system that regulates the body’s essential functions, such as pain, inflammation, sleep, mood, and appetite.

The process of ligand binding to the receptor.

The endocannabinoid system (ECS), present in vertebrates (mammals, birds, reptiles, and fish) and invertebrates (leeches, mussels, nematodes, and others), is no exception. It consists of the enzymes that synthesize and degrade cannabinoids, the cannabinoids as ligands, and the cannabinoid receptors (Silver, 2019).

The term cannabinoids in this case refer to both the endocannabinoids and the phytocannabinoids. The primary purpose of the ECS is to provide homeostasis for many metabolic functions, such as neurotransmission, inflammation, and energy modulation (Jarvis et al., 2017). There are two main cannabinoid receptors – the CB1 and CB2 – which differ in their location in the human body as well as in the effects they trigger. CB1 receptors are primarily present in the brain and central nervous system, but can also be found in smaller amounts in other tissues.

They modulate mood, appetite, memory, motivation, and pain. The CB2 receptors are more abundant in peripheral tissues, especially in various immune cells, hence they are mainly associated with a role in immunity (Mackie, 2008; Reekie et al., 2018; Figure 8).

When you’re not feeling well, the body is unbalanced. Experts believe that using CBD gives an extra push to restore the body’s balance. 

CBD in Sports

The use of CBD products in sports is increasing. Trainers, athletes, and other sports enthusiasts are discovering the benefits that CBD can offer when it comes to performance and recovering from sports activities. In 2018, the World Anti-doping Agency (WADA) removed CBD from its list of controlled substances. The agency allowed professional athletes to use CBD oil because of its beneficial properties. Unlike over-the-counter pain relievers and opioids, CBD has little to no side effects and doesn’t cause addiction. A 2018 report from the World Health Organization (WHO) shows that CBD exhibits no abuse or dependence effects, unlike THC and opioids. Since athletes are subjected to regular checks and tests for drugs, CBD shouldn’t test positive for THC, especially if you choose a CBD product that has been tested for its potency and is labeled accurately. Read on to learn more about the benefits of CBD in sports.

Benefits of CBD in Sports

There are several benefits of CBD for athletes and sports enthusiasts in general, including:

Relief from discomfort

CBD has relieving properties that can potentially help sports enthusiasts ease and relax their muscles. When active sportspeople use CBD it interacts with their body by binding to cannabinoid receptors responsible for managing the discomfort. The receptors receive signals from different stimuli and respond accordingly. This engagement creates relieving effects that allow rapid recovery. This means CBD oil products could be useful for those involved in sports who want a rapid recovery after their activity using a natural product.

Promotes muscle relaxation

In most cases, athletes experience muscle soreness due to intense training and competition. CBD oil’s relieving properties helps to relax the muscles while easing soreness. Interestingly, CBD oil also promotes muscle growth by boosting protein synthesis.

Speeds up recovery

Typically, sports enthusiasts suffer injuries caused by intense training and competition. While regular painkillers relieve pain and inflammation, they often come with adverse side effects and can lead to addiction. Thankfully, cannabidiol can potentially relieve pain with little to no side effects. And again, it’s fast-acting, providing faster results.


It is important to remember that CBD oil hasn’t been approved as medication, and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Instead, it should be used as a wellness and personal-care product. However, before using any form of CBD as a sportsperson, be sure to consult a doctor.