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  • by Nicola Boulton September 05, 2022 6 min read


    Early studies show that CBD may help with pain, inflammation, and sleep issues, hence why many athletes use the cannabinoid for recovery. Here is all you need to know about the role of CBD in recovery and related topics.

    People enjoy workout sessions until the muscles are sore and they can no longer help themselves, and for some, CBD seems like the answer. CBD studies are scarce, but the existing ones report that the cannabinoid is therapeutic and can help manage pain, inflammation, and sleep issues. Recovery from workout sessions comes with pain and inflammation, and for some, sleep is challenging. Since CBD promises to deal with these challenges, many people are after the cannabinoid for the same benefits. Here is all you need to know about CBD and how helpful it could be for your workout recovery. Learn more about why does cbd taste bad?

    What Is CBD?

    Although you can easily find CBD products (if the cannabinoid is fully legal in your state), you must know what CBD is and what it is not. Many are after CBD products but do not clearly understand what it is. According to Mascal et al. (2019), CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid in hemp and cannabis plants. Psychoactive means it does not cause the high effect in smoking weed, and whether you take its gummies, oils, or vapes, you will not get high from them. Watt & Karl (2017) reported that CBD is therapeutic, and many fans connect to CBD for this. Yet, there is a need for more studies on CBD to prove what it can and cannot offer.

    Why Do Athletes Use CBD for Muscle Recovery?

    Among the CBD fans are athletes who use CBD for post-workout recovery. CBD seems to be the answer for everything when it is not, and you care to know how it helps with recovery after a workout. Workout cones with inflammation and pain, which could translate to sleep issues. Some people also feel anxious when the pain during recovery is too much, and they have to be out of the gym for a day or more. Can CBD fasten your recovery and sore muscles? There are not enough studies to bank this. Still, CBD research points out that the cannabinoid can help with one or two things making recovery tough, as the next section explains.

    CBD for Pain

    Whether acute or chronic, pain will always come with workouts. The degree of pain differs from person to person, and so do the effects. Can you use CBD to manage pain while recovering? One of the commonest CBD uses is pain management; people use the cannabinoid for all kinds of pain. According to Vučković et al. (2018), CBD can reduce chronic and acute pain. The survey looked at CBD studies from 1975 to March 2018 and noted that CBD could manage pain from cancer, neuropathy, and fibromyalgia. Although it was not specific to workout pain, it suggests that the cannabinoid can help with many types of pain.

    CBD for Sleep

    Sleep also is a problem during recovery. Depending on the degree of the pain, you could find yourself turning a thousand times in bed and not getting a taste of CBD. Besides, sleep issues come when you become anxious because you cannot achieve as much as you did in the past during workouts. Can CBD help you boost sleep and make your recovery process more rewarding? According to Chagas et al. (2014), CBD can boost your sleep since it reduces the effects of the REM disorder in people with PTSD, helping them sleep better. Besides, García-Gutiérrez et al. (2020) noted that CBD could improve stress, anxiety, and depression, helping you sleep better. Nonetheless, more studies are needed to confirm the CBD sleep benefits.

    CBD for Inflammation

    Inflammation of cells, tissues, and joints can also make recovery for athletes more than challenge. Since it always accompanies pain, athletes suffer from it more often than not. Depending on the degree, it may leave one anxious, pained, and unable to sleep. Can you take CBD to improve inflammation and fasten the recovery process? According to Iffland & Grotenherman (2017), CBD may help with pain and inflammation. Nonetheless, we do not recommend athletes to take CBD to treat or cure inflammation since there are not enough studies to prove this true.

    Type of CBD for Recovery

    Regardless of the health concerns in CBD consumption, you may still want to take CBD for recovery after a workout. Thus, as the next section shows, you must know the right CBD products to go for and the formulations you need to focus on. There are three types of CBD, none of which is better than the other. You can enjoy CBD products in the following formulations;

    Full-spectrum CBD

    This formulation features CBD with THC, terpenes, cannabinoids, and other cannabis compounds. Many like it because of the many compounds and their unique flavor and taste.

    Isolate CBD

    This is one CBD extreme, featuring CBD in its purest form. It has no THC, terpenes, or flavonoids and makes your ideal CBD type if all you want is CBD and not the additional compounds or their taste.

    Broad-spectrum CBD

    This is more like full-spectrum CBD in composition but lacks THC. It is great for CBD fans who need many cannabis compounds but not THC.

    CBD Products for Recovery

    With information on available types of CBD and who they suit, you care to know which CBD products to go for. Like the CBD formulations, there are many products to tap into, and none is better than the other. Each has pros and cons, which you must contend with. Here are the available CBD product categories;

    1. CBD oils and tinctures; are the primary ways to take CBD, and you can administer them orally, sublingually, or add their drops to drinks and foods.
    2. CBD edibles; CBD oils are good for effective delivery, but they are bitter. If you find it challenging to take them, opt for CBD edibles like gummies and honey sticks which allow you to enjoy the taste and flavor of CBD.
    • CBD vapes are the fastest way to take CBD since they deliver the cannabinoid almost instantly.
    1. CBD topicals; Most athletes like creams and massage oils, among other topicals, since they let you enjoy CBD benefits without interacting with your blood.
    2. CBD caps are great at masking the bitter taste of CBD oil, although they are not flavored.


    There is not enough evidence to show that CBD will fasten recovery in athletes. Still, studies show that CBD can help with pain, anxiety, inflammation, and sleep issues, suggesting that it is great for managing workout challenges. Yet, we need more research to prove that CBD will help you recover. Peer into this article to know how CBD and recovery relate and how to explore CBD for the same. Learn more about how does cbd work in the body?


    Vučković, S., Srebro, D., Vujović, K. S., Vučetić, Č., & Prostran, M. (2018). Cannabinoids and pain: new insights from old molecules. Frontiers in pharmacology, 1259.

    Iffland, K., & Grotenhermen, F. (2017). An Update on Safety and Side Effects of Cannabidiol: A Review of Clinical Data and Relevant Animal Studies. Cannabis and cannabinoid research, 2(1), 139–154.

    Watt, G., & Karl, T. (2017). In vivo evidence for therapeutic properties of cannabidiol (CBD) for Alzheimer's disease. Frontiers in pharmacology, 8, 20.

    Mascal, M., Hafezi, N., Wang, D., Hu, Y., Serra, G., Dallas, M. L., & Spencer, J. P. (2019). Synthetic, non-intoxicating 8, 9-dihydrocannabidiol for the mitigation of seizures. Scientific reports, 9(1), 1-6.

    García-Gutiérrez, M. S., Navarrete, F., Gasparyan, A., Austrich-Olivares, A., Sala, F., & Manzanares, J. (2020). Cannabidiol: a potential new alternative for the treatment of anxiety, depression, and psychotic disorders. Biomolecules, 10(11), 1575.

    Chagas, M. H., Eckeli, A. L., Zuardi, A. W., Pena‐Pereira, M. A., Sobreira‐Neto, M. A., Sobreira, E. T., ... & Crippa, J. A. D. S. (2014). Cannabidiol can improve complex sleep‐related behaviours associated with rapid eye movement sleep behaviour disorder in Parkinson's disease patients: a case series. Journal of clinical pharmacy and therapeutics, 39(5), 564-566.

    Nicola Boulton
    Nicola Boulton

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