Can CBD help with DOMS? DOMS stands for Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness – and anyone who has ever done strenuous activity or sport is likely to have experienced it at some point.
When we exercise and put strain on muscles, it can cause a small amount of damage (but nothing as serious as a strain or tear) which needs some time to heal, which is why the soreness appears. The aches and pains don’t usually make themselves known until a few hours after the activity, or sometimes not until the next day.
Anyone who has had DOMS will know that this type of pain and soreness can sometimes be significant and can make normal daily activities really quite difficult as your body recovers. DOMS can last for between 3-5 days, with the most severe discomfort usually being felt during the first 1-2 days after exercise.
DOMS isn’t just an issue that people who aren’t used to a certain type of workout or activity suffer from; it’s something that professional athletes regularly deal with too. More and more elite-level athletes are turning to CBD as a tool to help them manage DOMS. Megan Rapinoe, the US Soccer Women’s National Team star and Olympic gold medalist famously incorporates CBD oil into her training routine 1 , along with a raft of NFL stars 2 and Olympic athletes.
How CBD affects the body?
CBD is a compound found in cannabis plants that is not psychoactive, so people who take it don’t experience feeling ‘high’. It can be separated chemically from the other cannabinoids contained in the plants, so that it contains very low or no levels of THC, which is the active ingredient in cannabis plants which causes the ‘high’ that cannabis the drug is known for.
CBD is thought to interact with the receptors that make up the body’s Endocannabinoid System (ECS), which are responsible for regulating everything from pain perception, immune system and stress response to the cardiovascular system and, of course, the muscles in the body. In the context of sport and athletes or those undertaking strenuous activity who are considering using CBD, reports do indicate 3 a range of potential physical, biochemical and psychological benefits could result from taking it.
Some types of pain relief, such as opioids, can be habit-forming and have significant side effects. CBD offers a potential alternative for those who wish to look elsewhere for assistance if they experience DOMS.
How can this help with DOMS?
Research suggests 4 that CBD could potentially support athletes in areas including pain management and reducing inflammation, which are the two main issues experienced with DOMS and the discomfort that can follow strenuous physical activity, no matter how physically fit you are.
With professional athletes, who need to recover quickly from DOMS because more high-level performances are needed within a short space of time, anything which helps with pain and has anti inflammatory properties can only be helpful. Whether you’re an athlete or simply someone who experiences DOMS after a strenuous workout or some other sporting activity.
Taking CBD could potentially make things more comfortable as your body repairs the microscopic muscle damage done. Relief from muscle pain can help support your normal lifestyle during recovery and minimize the negative impact that DOMS can have on your everyday activities.
How to use CBD for DOMS?
There are various ways to use CBD, so it should be possible for everyone to find a method or combination of methods that works for your personal preferences, routine and lifestyle.
Topical application of CBD
Applying CBD topically in a muscle rub is an option that many people using it for DOMS may wish to explore. The CBD muscle rub can be applied before or after exercise and the very act of applying the product can also aid circulation and recovery, aside from the other potential benefits of CBD on pain and inflammation.
Taking CBD oil
CBD oil is considered one of the most fast-acting methods of taking CBD, so if using it for DOMS, it can be taken before or after the activity in a number of different ways. Taking CBD oil drops under the tongue can help it get into your system quickly, and there are many different flavors available to choose from.
CBD oil can also be taken in drinks. That could be part of your pre-workout hydration routine or added to your post-exercise protein shake or smoothie. CBD oil can also be added to food if that is your preferred way to take it, with many people choosing to include it in anything from salad dressing to baked goods.
Taking CBD gummies
Another form in which you can take CBD for DOMS is gummies. Essentially a convenient and fun way to take CBD with highly accurate dosing (each gummy has a set amount of CBD included), gummies are often a great way to introduce CBD to someone who hasn’t tried it before.
As with the other forms of CBD, gummies can be taken before or after the physical activity which may result in DOMS. It’s important to source any CBD products from a known and reputable CBD source, to ensure accurate dosing and assurances of quality and safety.