UK Athletes to Receive Shorter Bans for Cannabis Use
Rules regarding recreational drug use are undergoing a full review by the UK Anti-Doping agency (or UKAD for short). Hence, athletes will no longer be banned from their sport for two years for testing positive for cannabis. In addition, testing positive for cocaine will also entail a shorter ban, according to the UKAD.
By doing so, the UKAD will effectively mirror the rules used by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), bringing these two closer together. This is all done in the hopes of giving performance-enhancing drugs a lengthier ban than that of recreational drugs; anti-doping agencies want to ensure that athletes are not enhancing their abilities through the use of illegal substances.
As a result, a professional athlete will no longer get punished (so severely) for using recreational, non-performance enhancing drugs.
Nevertheless, it’s worth noting that the ban for both cannabis and cocaine use is still in place, albeit for a considerably shorter time frame. Namely, according to the new rules, a positive drug test for said recreational drugs will only result in a ban of up to three months.
Moreover, although cannabis and cocaine are leagues apart from one another, they are both considered recreational drugs rather than performance-enhancing drugs — hence the change of policy.
All in all, this could be seen as a huge stepping stone for the pro-cannabis community (and the cannabis market in general), seeing how cannabis use is becoming more widely accepted across the different industries; particularly sport.