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MMA Fighters Turn to CBD For Pain Relief

MMA Fighters Turn to CBD For Pain Relief

Contact sports can be painful. Day in and day out, fighters engaged in mixed martial arts, boxing, and other fighting disciplines are exposed to crushing blows to their head, body, arms, and legs.

And though Road House martial artist Patrick Swayze notably dismisses such pain following a bar brawl when he says, “pain don’t hurt,” the fact is that sometimes after a long day’s work in the ring, you’re going to feel it.

Pain on this level is traditionally treated with massages, ice baths, ointments, and painkillers. In recent years, however, many fighters have added a powerful natural medicine to their daily relief regimen.

CBD may be just what the doctor ordered and is available over the counter in the form of broad spectrum CBD oil, softgels, edibles, and creams.

CBD, known in scientific circles as cannabidiol, is a hemp-based medicine that is extracted from the plant in concentrated form. Millions of people use it to relieve everything from stress and anxiety to everyday aches and pains.

Clinical studies show that it possesses nociceptive and analgesic properties, which may explain why those who take CBD regularly report lowered pain sensation and overall relief of pain. It also acts as an anti-inflammatory that may reduce swelling and improve muscle recovery.

In a study involving 800 participants, CBD combination therapies were found to reduce certain types of pain by up to 30%. The potential therapeutic effect is significant for those experiencing bumps and bruises after training.

CBD is available in several types of blends that have pain relief potential.

Full spectrum CBD oils are the most popular, as they contain active compounds known as cannabinoids and terpenes. CBD is a cannabinoid that, when taken orally, acts directly on endocannabinoid receptor sites in the central nervous system. These receptors interact with other systems in the body, including those responsible for pain management, stress response, and sleep cycles. Full spectrum CBD includes cannabinoids like CBN, CBG, and CBC, all of which may play a role in pain relief and anti-inflammation. THC, the psychoactive cannabinoid found in intoxicating marijuana, is also present in full spectrum CBD. However, THC levels must be maintained below 0.3% to be legal to purchase over the counter. This amount is low enough not to lead to psychoactive effects but sufficient to support CBD’s pain-relieving benefits.

Though marijuana and THC are no longer on the restricted list for many fighting leagues, some MMA pros prefer to keep it out of their bodies entirely.

Broad spectrum blends solve the THC issue by removing it entirely from the preparation. Broad spectrum CBD oil maintains a substantial cannabinoid and terpene profile, so users can still benefit from the “entourage effect” of all the hemp compounds working synergistically to relieve pain, but with 0% THC.

While CBD on its own can help, emerging research suggests that another cannabinoid found in both full spectrum and broad spectrum CBD oils may also contribute to natural pain reduction. The cannabinoid cannabigerol, also known as CBG, may have even more potent analgesic properties than THC. It can be isolated from the hemp plant into a pure CBG oil and taken as a stand-alone medicine or combined with CBD oils for even more pain relief support.

How long CBD stays in your system depends on several factors, including how much CBD you take and how you take it. CBD is available in topical salves and creams that can be applied directly to target areas. When rubbed directly into the skin, absorption can rapidly occur within 15 – 60 minutes. Most clinical studies into CBD’s pain-relieving properties involve oral ingestion of CBD. This method of dosing has high rates of bioavailability approaching 20%, reasonably quick absorption into the central nervous system, and peak effects that last 4 –to 8 hours.

CBD and CBG may not be miracle cures that eliminate pain entirely, but combined with a medically prescribed treatment plan may help to support the relief of everyday aches and pains.


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