Good News: NCAA Easying Pot Policies for Athletes
Just recently, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) increased the THC threshold for a marijuana test by more than threefold.
The news came as a pleasant surprise, especially to college players that are avid cannabis consumers. Better yet, the change will retroactively affect tests performed since last fall!
Namely, the threshold for a positive test on tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — the psychoactive component of marijuana — went from 35 to 150 nanograms per milliliter of blood, which is the same threshold as the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
What’s more, WADA announced reviewing their ban on cannabis this year, after they banned the American sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson to compete in the women’s 100-meter race at the Tokyo Olympics due to a positive marijuana test.
NCAA’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Brian Hainline, explains that the organization is simply responding to the growing public awareness concerning the many health benefits of cannabis.
Meanwhile, an increasing number of athletes are taking cannabis as a way to reduce musculoskeletal pain post-workout. A recent survey even showed that no less than 80% of the NFL players used cannabis. Not only that, but scientists have also proved that moderate THC use boosts testosterone levels.
Last but not least, those who test positive will gave to undergo a “management plan and education” program under the new rules. For comparison, previous regulations required an NCAA athlete to miss half of the regular season.
In addition to that, the second positive test meant a one-season ban, compared to just sitting out a quarter of all games under the new proposal.