High Prevalence of Cannabidiol Use Within Male Professional Rugby Union and League Players: A Quest for Pain Relief and Enhanced Recovery

Andreas Kasper, Andy Sparks, Matthew Hooks, Matthew Skeer, Benjamin Webb, Houman Nia, James Morton, Graeme Close

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Rugby is characterized by frequent high-intensity collisions, resulting in muscle soreness. Players consequently seek strategies to reduce soreness and accelerate recovery, with an emerging method being cannabidiol (CBD), despite anti-doping risks. The prevalence and rationale for CBD use in rugby has not been explored; therefore, we recruited professional male players to complete a survey on CBD. Goodness of fit chi-square (χ 2) was used to assess CBD use between codes and player position. Effects of age on use were determined using χ 2 tests of independence. Twenty-five teams provided 517 player responses. While the majority of players had never used CBD (p < .001, V = 0.24), 26% had either used it (18%) or were still using it (8%). Significantly more CBD use was observed in rugby union compared with rugby league (p = .004, V = 0.13), but player position was not a factor (p = .760, V = 0.013). CBD use increased with players’ age (p < .001, V = 0.28), with mean use reaching 41% in the players aged 28 years and older category (p < .0001). The players using CBD primarily used the Internet (73%) or another teammate (61%) to obtain information, with only 16% consulting a nutritionist. The main reasons for CBD use were improving recovery/pain (80%) and sleep (78%), with 68% of players reporting a perceived benefit. These data highlight the need for immediate education on the risks of CBD, as well as the need to explore the claims regarding pain and sleep.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)315-322
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism
Volume30
Issue number5
Early online date30 Jun 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jul 2020

Keywords

  • CBD
  • cannabis
  • DOMS
  • supplement
  • Cannabis
  • Supplement

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'High Prevalence of Cannabidiol Use Within Male Professional Rugby Union and League Players: A Quest for Pain Relief and Enhanced Recovery'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this