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CBD for Football and in the NFL

The National Football League (NFL) hasn’t outright endorsed CBD, but removing suspensions during the season, shortening the time players are tested, and significantly increasing the limit for testing positive for cannabis suggests they are invested in how it can benefit football players, as it benefits a variety of athletes in other sports. For football players, CBD can be a new tool to add to your training that provides nothing but benefits and an all-natural alternative to prescription pain-killers.

 The new NFL and NFLPA collective bargaining agreement (CBA) signed in 2020 will further reduce the testing period from four months to only the first two weeks at the start of training camp. A new threshold for a positive test has been put in place, raising the allowed amount of THC from 35 nanograms (ng) to 150ng.  This 150ng limit is the same limit enforced by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).  The new CBD limits are much less punitive to players.


Furthermore, in February 2021, the NFL & NLFPA Pain Management Committee (PMC) initiated a new study looking at  the impact and benefits of CBD in place of opioids, it’s impact on player performance and it’s role in pain management. The outcome of this report could be a real watershed moment for CBD in the NFL. 

Football players work through the pain, and it’s not just during the game.



Relying on pain medication can last long after the game is over, putting players and retired players at risk of overdose of opiods and significant liver damage. In fact, a study in the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine shows that 26 percent of retired football players still rely on prescription opioids. CBD can be used for the same reasons these study participants reported using prescription opioids: “for pain management, use "to function," to improve mood, to reduce stress, and to aid sleep.”


Legendary NFL Quarterback and C+L Athlete, says CBD has drastically transformed his life.



“Since my retirement, I’ve tried all kinds of treatments, including dozens of CBD products, looking for a solution to residual pain from my playing days while I also maintain an active lifestyle. I can now move better, recover faster and train harder. I use the Champions + Legends muscle cream or muscle rub after a hard workout or a round of golf with my wife, and I wake up the next day with no pain.”

   – C+L Athlete



James Harrison, a fellow retired NFL player and C+L Athlete, says CBD has changed the way he trains.



“As I get older, the recovery process is just as important as pushing weights and Champions + Legends products help me take my fitness to even higher levels.”

    - James Harrison, C+L Athlete



There are many reasons to add CBD to your training regimen, no matter what you are training for:

CBD is a safer alternative than regular use of pain medication. Unlike regularly using ibuprofen, naproxen or high dose aspirin, or even opioids, taking CBD won’t potentially put you at risk for kidney damage - or overdose. CBD works by interacting with your body’s endocannabinoid system, responsible for maintaining a sense of balance, which affects your mood and perception of pain.

CBD can help decrease pain from arthritis. Like any sport, football takes a toll on joints and tendons, and can cause the onset of arthritis, especially if you overdo it or are injured while still relatively young.  According to a study by Centers for for Disease Control & Prevention, almost 50 million (22.2%) adult Americans over 18 were diagnosed with arthritis in 2007–2009, most prominently osteoarthritis and the autoimmune disease rheumatoid arthritis. A projected increase to 67 million is anticipated by 2030.

CBD has been shown to help reduce inflammation. Studies show that consistent head trauma can result in brain inflammation that can last long after the season is over. Beyond concussions, long term effects are thought to include mental health and Alzheimer's. CBD can help reduce inflammation by inhibiting and reducing enzymes and molecules that activate the inflammatory response.

CBD may reduce anxiety and stress.Many athletes, especially football players, struggle with injuries, which can in turn result in stress and anxiety. CBD works to help manage stress by increasing serotonin levels in the brain, which is a chemical messenger that promotes feelings of calmness, happiness, and well-being.



The Champions + Legends lineup of CBD tools integrate seamlessly into any athlete’s training, with softgels or tinctures to get that pain and inflammation under control, and topical solutions including muscle rubs, creams and patches for targeted relief.



Our full-spectrum CBD products are well-rounded, addressing all aspects of training, giving you the tools you need to keep going. No matter what you’re training for.