Cleveland Browns tight end Ben Watson is an absolute beast. Last week, we were lucky to see the man in action with his off-season trainer, Tim Slominsky, at Euphoria Health and Fitness in Cleveland. Watson's workout consisted of several high intensity circuits, including some exercises we'd never seen before, leaving little wonder how this unique athlete dominates the field.
First, Watson ran about a mile on a treadmill set at a slight incline. Then he lay down for a series of dynamic stretches with a resistance band. After moving his legs through their entire range of motion—hitting his quads, hamstrings, hips and groin—he was ready to move to his first circuit.
Slominsky said, "We do a Resistance Band Series, which consists of Squats, One-Legged Lunges, Squat Thrusts and Jump Squats." Watson's heart rate stayed elevated as he exploded through approximately 15 reps for each exercise. [We envisioned him powering off the line and introducing his defensive opponent to a world of pain. We do not envy that defensive opponent.]
His second circuit also focused on building strong, explosive legs—including Weighted Lunges down a hallway, immediately followed by Frog Jumps back to the start. When working with Watson, Slominsky keeps in mind the four quarters of a football game, believing the best way to prepare for the rigors of the NFL season is to challenge endurance and conditioning early in the off-season.
Watson shifted over to work on his already powerful chest, using exercises we'd never seen before. First, he did an Incline Bench Press using kettlebells attached to resistance bands to challenge stability. Slominsky thinks this simulates a defender trying to rip the ball away. Next, Watson worked on his grip and ball-holding ability by performing Lat Pulldowns with a resistance band. Slominsky had him pulling the bar as close to his chest as possible and holding for three seconds. This prepares Watson for those body-crunching hits he'll absorb while squeezing the ball into his body.
"He's an extremely well-rounded athlete," said Slominsky, "one of the best I've trained here in terms of doing everything that you ask." He predicted the coming season will be one of Watson's best, a Pro Bowl year. Luckily, the NFL lockout is over,and the beastly tight end from South Carolina is back at training camp where he belongs.
Stay tuned for exclusive video content on STACK TV featuring Ben Watson's in-depth interview and workout.
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