Athletes and cannabis are an increasingly common combination. One such athlete is Rob Van Dam, a professional wrestler who has been active since 1991.
Professional wrestling takes elements of athletic competition and achievements, theatre, and live-action television in order to produce a very unique product. I had the pleasure of growing up during the Attitude Era of wrestling, and as a child I absolutely loved it.
Rob Van Dam has always been a fan favourite within wrestling. His amazing athleticism combines well with his down to earth personality. Additionally, RVD consumes, and advocates for, the personal use of cannabis as medicine, therapy, and for recreation.
Van Dam has many fans across the world from many different age ranges and walks of life.
Athletes and Cannabis – The Early Career of Rob Van Dam
After training in kickboxing and other martial arts, RVD started wrestling professionally in 1991.
After being signed to WCW (World Championship Wrestling) from 1992-1993, Van Dam wrestled independently until 1996, when he signed with the legendary ECW. From 1996-2001, Van Dam’s popularity rapidly rose within ECW and he was definitely one of the all-time greatest from the company.
In 2001, he joined WWE, after ECW was bought out. While in WWE, RVD continued to be a fan favourite and wrestled with the company until 2007 when his contract expired. Then, RVD went back to the independent wrestling circuit until 2010 when he signed with third-string wrestling company TNA.
RVD returned to the WWE for one pretty uneventful run in 2013-2014. Van Dam then headed back to the independent circuit. RVD is scheduled to make appearances on TNA during 2019.
RVD has also invented a weightlifting technique, known as the “Van Dam Lift” which has been approved by the International All-Around Weightlifting Association as well as the United States All-Round Weightlifting Association. He has starred in several movies from 1995-2016 and his shoot-interviews about wrestling are great to watch.
Rob Van Dam Becomes A Wrestling Superstar – Athletes and Cannabis
In 2006, Rob Van Dam and another wrestler, Sabu, were pulled over by police for speeding. Van Dam was found to be in possession of 18 grams of cannabis hashish, as well as pharmaceutical medicine which he later produced a prescription for. Both were arrested and posted bail.
At the time, Rob Van Dam was the both WWE and ECW Champions, experiencing one of the biggest pushes of his career. After this incident, WWE wrote into their script that he would lose both titles on consecutive nights. This act by the company was seen as punishment for violating their wellness agreement and Van Dam was also suspended 30 days without pay.
The footage of the arrest is widely available.
It is widely believed that the arrest of RVD and Sabu for cannabis possession is what lead to their contracts not being renewed the following year.
RVD – Athletes and Cannabis Advocation
Rob Van Dam is just one athlete who uses cannabis and advocates for the legalization of marijuana across the United States. He has also appeared on MSNBC where he debated former War on Drugs Tzar Barry McCaffrey.
Advocating for cannabis further, Van Dam, claimed that it (marijuana) was an athletic enhancer for him. Helping him with the tough life of a professional wrestler.
It is not so much the wrestling that is the hard part, some professional wrestlers work 5 days a week in different parts of the country. This requires a lot of travelling and the road lifestyle has to lead many wrestlers down roads of serious drug addiction and other problems. Not to mention, pro wrestler’s training regiments are absolutely insane.
Rob Van Dam has always been an interesting athlete to examine because his experiences as a wrestler provide insight as to why people turn to other, more harmful, drugs.
His successes in the wrestling, weightlifting, martial arts world and movies/television give Rob Van Dam a very unique profile and life-story indeed.