Is Marijuana A Performance Enhancing Drug?
Does consuming marijuana make you a better athlete? Biologically speaking, no. Maybe it provides a sense of focus that you don't get without consuming marijuana, but whether that focus is 'better' or not is highly subjective. From a biological standpoint, marijuana slows down reaction times at the very least, and therefore is an athletic hindrance more than an enhancer. Don't get me wrong, I don't think marijuana is bad (obviously!) for athletes, and certainly shouldn't be a banned substance. I'm merely trying to highlight the ridiculousness of the policies that say marijuana should have the same penalty as steroids when it comes to drug testing in sports.
If a mixed martial arts fighter wants to deal with his or her aches and pains with cannabis instead of pain killers, I'm in full support of that. If a MMA fighter wants to relax after a long workout with some cannabis, I think he or she should have that right. I don't see how marijuana could provide any 'edge' in any sport except competitive hot dog eating contests (if you consider that a sport!). It seems that Dana White from the UFC agrees. Below is video footage of a very passionate conversation about the topic. Marijuana comes up about 8 minutes into the video: