CBD & Yoga: A Guide to Get Started
Written by Jason Brett
Edited by Cathy Rozyczko on
November 5, 2021
CBD and yoga can – and should – go hand-in-hand. These two vitality boosters are the perfect complement to one another for many reasons.
People turn to yoga for relaxation, as a form of exercise, and to let go of the stress and anxiety of the day. CBD oil and other products can contribute to an overall feeling of wellness as well as to recovery after the session is complete.
Quick Facts About CBD
Cannabidiol, or CBD, is a cannabinoid that is naturally found in the hemp plant. There are actually many cannabinoids in these plants, but CBD and THC are the two that most people recognize. Most of the CBD oil that is on the market today is derived from industrial hemp which by federal US law contains only trace amounts of THC (specifically, 0.3% or less).
CBD comes in many different forms, although most people are most familiar with the oil. But it can also come in plant form (aka CBD hemp flowers), which can be smoked or vaped. CBD edibles, CBD tinctures, and other products have all grown in popularity over the last few years.
What is the difference between CBD and THC?
Both THC and CBD are the primary cannabinoids that are found in the cannabis sativa plant. While there are some similarities, they are really quite different as far as how they make people feel.
The main difference is that CBD does not get people high. The euphoric feeling that comes from using marijuana in one of its many forms is the direct result of THC, a psychoactive cannabinoid.
But there are other differences too, such as:
- CBD may be better at helping control inflammation and neuropathic pain than THC.
- THC can work well with reducing pain that is related to cramps or spasticity.
- Using too much THC can make certain types of pain worse instead of better.
- THC can have some unwanted side effects, which is generally not the case with CBD.
How does CBD work in the body?
The body has a special system called the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. It is highly involved in regulating a lot of bodily functions, such as pain, appetite, sleep, and immune system response.
There are many cannabinoid receptors within the ECS that are impacted when a person uses CBD. The results may include less pain, reduced inflammation, clearer thinking, and many other natural benefits.
The best part is that when you combine CBD and yoga, you may not have to wait long to see fitness results. You may be able to notice a difference in how you feel after your very first session.
What Are the Benefits of Using CBD Before and After Yoga?
CBD Yoga is a trend that has quickly caught on all over the world. A lot of health enthusiasts have started to recommend it and for good reason. But is CBD a miracle cure, or it is just another health fad? The fact is, when CBD is combined with yoga, it offers a list of powerful benefits, which may include the following.
1. Better Transitions
Yogic exercises can place a lot of physical demands on the body. Tendons and ligaments can easily become strained; especially if the exercises are not done correctly. The stretching that yoga is known for requires a certain degree of flexibility, suppleness, and fluidity.
CBD might be able to help with all of the above. When CBD oil is taken before or during yoga, it may help relax the muscle tissues in the body. Afterward, it can relieve muscle pain and lessen the severity of inflammation.
2. Better Connection Between Mind and Body
Researchers have found that CBD is actually a literal bridge between the mind and the body. When you take it before a session, it may help you feel more focused as you clear your mind from all distractions. This, in turn, puts you more in tune with your body.
3. Improved Concentration and Mindfulness
If you are like most people, the stresses of the day may seem like they constantly weigh on your mind. It can be so hard to let those things go, even if it is just for an hour or so while you work out. But if yoga is your favorite form of exercise, using CBD could help with that.
Everyone can benefit from being more mindful and focusing on what is happening in the present instead of what might happen in the future. CBD can help because it is involved with the functions of dopamine and serotonin in the brain and body. Both of them can help with concentration and mindfulness.
4. Less Inflammation
We touched on inflammation earlier, but we'd like to go into more detail about it here. Inflammation isn't always bad. In fact, a little is good, especially because it sends a message to the body's immune system that healing in a particular area is needed.
But too much inflammation can cause serious problems, and again…CBD can come to the rescue! The combination of yoga and CBD may reduce inflammatory markers, such as cytokine levels, which lead to pain. It can work really well to relieve chronic inflammation in the body. CBD can be used both before/during a workout and after to help with inflammation and recovery.
5. Improved Body Perception
Pain is the body's way of communicating that something is wrong. For yogis, they may feel pain before any real damage is done when they work out, and this should come as a warning. But sometimes those warnings are overlooked and people can easily hurt themselves because they lack adept body perception.
CBD can help to enhance body perception by helping you notice changes that are taking place in your body. In this way, it can serve as a method of protecting yourself from serious injury later on.
Best Ways to Take CBD: Advice for Yogis of All Levels
Yogis may want to experiment with taking CBD in several different forms to find out what will work best for them. A lot of people prefer to take CBD oil tinctures, and this is actually the most popular method. If you're not sure how to find your correct dosage, click this link to get more information.
CBD topicals can also be really helpful to reduce pain; especially for people who practice yoga. Massaging a CBD lotion or salve into sore muscles can relieve a lot of pain and inflammation and make you more comfortable during your recovery and in your subsequent sessions.
We love the combination of yoga and CBD! Have you tried it? We'd love to hear about your experiences. Please leave us a comment below.
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Malfitano AM, Proto MC, Bifulco M. Cannabinoids in the management of spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis. Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2008;4(5):847-853. doi:10.2147/ndt.s3208
Cash MC, Cunnane K, Fan C, Romero-Sandoval EA (2020) Mapping cannabis potency in medical and recreational programs in the United States. PLoS ONE 15(3): e0230167
Russo, Ethan B et al. “Agonistic properties of cannabidiol at 5-HT1a receptors.” Neurochemical research vol. 30,8 (2005): 1037-43. doi:10.1007/s11064-005-6978-1
“CBD: A Marijuana Miracle or Just Another Health Fad?” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 5 May 2019
Alger BE. Getting high on the endocannabinoid system. Cerebrum. 2013;2013:14. Published 2013 Nov 1
Vandergriendt, Carly. “What's the Difference between Dopamine and Serotonin?” Healthline, Healthline Media, 16 July 2020
“Understanding Acute and Chronic Inflammation.” Harvard Health, 1 Apr. 2020
“Pain.” MedlinePlus, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 6 Aug. 2021
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