The decisions are made by WADA‘s executive committee after a meeting in Sydney on Friday and followed recommendations from the body’s advisory group on its list of banned substances.
“Tramadol abuse, with its dose-dependent risks of physical dependence, opiate addiction and overdoses in the general population, is of concern and has led to it being a controlled drug in many countries,” WADA said in a news release.
“Research studies funded by WADA have also confirmed tramadol’s potential to improve physical performance.”
Former England football goalkeeper Chris Kirkland said in July he was driven to suicide by his addiction and abuse of tramadol after using the opioid to treat back injuries.
WADA said the delay in implementing the ban until 2024 was intended to communicate its implications to athletes, their entourages and medical personnel.
The cannabis ban came into the picture last year when American sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson was barred from the Tokyo 100m Olympics after being banned for a month for using the drug in the wake of her mother’s death.
WADA had just reduced the ban on recreational drug use by athletes who tested positive out of competition from two years to one to three months.
However, at the request of some “stakeholders”, WADA agreed to review the cannabis ban, but decided to enforce it on Friday because the use of the drug “was contrary to the spirit of the sport”.
WADA said the level of cannabis’s active ingredient in a sample needed to cause a positive test in competition would require the user to be a “significantly disabled athlete or frequent user”.
“WADA is aware of the diversity of opinions and perceptions regarding this substance around the world, and even within certain countries,” said Director General Olivier Niggli.
“WADA plans to continue research in this area in relation to (the) potential performance-enhancing effects, the impact on the health of athletes and also in relation to the perception of cannabis by athletes, experts and others around the world. .”