You see it all the time in sports. Professional athletes getting suspended from competition because marijuana was found in their system. The question is why are they getting disciplined over this drug? Professional athletes should be allowed to use marijuana as a way to ease the pain of their injuries and relax after tough competitions. Whether it is the NFL, NBA , MLB, or any other professional or Olympic sport, athletes do use medicinal marijuana. Athletes are people too, and all they want is help without getting addicted to harmful painkillers or worse drugs.
One of the main sports where marijuana is used widely among its player is American football. Concussions are a big problem in the NFL. Many players are retiring early and some people are choosing not to play football at all because of the consequences that can come later in life after having too many head injuries. The non-psychoactive part of marijuana known as CBD has the potential to treat and even prevent concussions. Not only concussions but many other injuries such as sprains and many others. Medical marijuana can help soothe pain and stress among these players as they lay their bodies on the line every week during games.
In most leagues, prescription opioid painkillers are the preferred treatment method. Hundreds of former NFL players claim they never took painkillers in college, or at any time before they entered the league. Yet as professionals, they regularly used the pills to continue playing. This resulted in many devastating consequences as even in retirement, many former players became addicted to these painkillers which sent them through painful journeys. Randy Grimes, a former center, started taking Vicodin and Halcion, a sleeping pill, in his second season to get through full-contact practices. According to a study conducted in the NFL back in 2016, over 50 percent of players have known a teammate to be addicted to painkillers. Former NFL player, Calvin Johnson spent nine years on the Detroit Lions and said painkillers were handed out “like candy.”
People can be addicted to marijuana but due to thousands of studies and evidence supporting the health benefits of marijuana, it isn’t as life threatening as being addicted to painkillers. Marijuana is said to be an excellent muscle relaxer and effective in treating chronic pain.Their have been many advocates across the sports world who believe marijuana should be allowed as a medical alternative. NBA All-Star Blake Griffin supports medical marijuana specifically because “ he believes many guys would probably benefit from it and not take as many painkillers which have worse long time effects. NBA legend Phil Jackson and Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr spoke to the press about their own marijuana use and how they believe professional sports leagues like the NBA and NFL should change their marijuana policies in order to help athletes.
It is time for these organizations to allow their athletes to use marijuana as a healthier alternative as a medicine. There are way too many people who suffer from these painkiller addictions and it is important that players get better options for their own health. It is only a matter of time before professional sport leagues create more fair marijuana policies.