Colorado Study to Explore Marijuana’s Effects on Workouts

December 6, 2021 / Athletic LeaderPlayer SafetySports Medicine
A University of Colorado Boulder study will look to examine the effects of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) on the body during athletic performance.

“Cannabis is often associated with a decrease in motivation. But at the same time, we are seeing an increasing number of anecdotal reports of people using it in combination with everything from golfing and yoga to snowboarding and running,” Ph.D. student in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience Laurel Gibson said in a report from CU Boulder.

coloradoAccording to the university report, previous studies in exercise neuroscience suggest it is not endorphins that cause the “runner’s high,” but cannabinoid-like chemicals the brain naturally produces. The CU study will look at whether supplementing cannabis during exercise will emulate the “runner’s high” effect.

The Study on Physical Activity and Cannabis Effects, or SPACE, is searching for volunteers who already use cannabis while exercising. The study consist of three sessions.

In the first session, participants will take a baseline cognitive and physical test and be assigned either CBD or THC strains. In the second, they will be observed working out sober. In the last session, the participants will workout using the strain they were assigned.

Those running the SPACE study hope to find other benefits as well.

“If cannabis could ease pain and inflammation, helping older adults to be more active, that could be a real benefit,” CU Boulder Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience Angela Bryan said in the university report.

To read the full article from the University of Colorado Boulder about the possible benefits of cannabis and exercise, click here. To learn more about the SPACE study, or volunteer, visit the study website.