When you think of marijuana, “athletic” probably isn’t the first word that comes to mind. The drug is far better known for its tendency to induce sloth and depress motivation than it is for its ability to spark drive and fuel determination.
But that perception is wrong much of the time. Many pro athletes smoke up, some during the season. And while they are occasionally caught and sanctioned for violating league rules, their use of the drug has little real impact on their physical or mental abilities.
Now two big players in the cannabis game, including a former NFL player, are teaming up to bring pot and its athletic potential together in one place: Power Plant Fitness in San Francisco.
Power Plant Fitness
The business is a health gym dreamed up by cannabis entrepreneur Jim McAlpine, one of the biggest names in the marijuana industry, and retired NFL star Ricky Williams, a player known for his many pot-related suspensions.
McAlpine, who got his start in the snowboard industry many years ago, recently went into cannabis and founded the 420 Games, an annual series of competitions focused on the legal marijuana market in the United States, including California. The drug is allowed as medicine in the Golden State, and voters are expected to legalize it fully in November.
McAlpine announced on the 420 Games website that he was joining with Williams to open Power Plant Fitness within the next few months. The facility would require “cannabis performance assessments” of members to determine how much THC they should use before working out. Edibles and vaping would be allowed on the gym floor, McAlpine said.
Launch planned for fall 2016
The opening is expected in the fall of 2016, he said.
Williams, a running back, won the Heisman Trophy at the University of Texas; went on to play for the New Orleans Saints, the Miami Dolphins, the Toronto Argonauts, and the Baltimore Ravens; and retired after the 2011 season.
He was suspended repeatedly for marijuana violations during his career with the NFL. He said he retired in large part because he feared the repercussions of another positive drug test.
Williams suffers from several serious mental health issues, and has said he uses cannabis as a form of “psychotherapy.” He briefly worked marketing a popular antidepressant but later said marijuana worked better than any medication he had tried. Williams has occasionally announced intentions to quit weed but has stressed that he supports people who benefit from using the drug.