Health and Wellness

NFL star Russell Wilson spends at least '$1 million’ a year on his mind and body

Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks
Otto Greule Jr

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson says he is so determined to play football until he's in his mid-40s (like Tom Brady) that he employs a full-time "performance team," has high tech "toys" and spends seven figures a year on his health.

Wilson told sports analyst Bill Simmons on his podcast on Oct. 15. that a majority of the money he spends goes to his full-time "performance team." The team consists of a trainer who travels everywhere with Wilson and his wife, a physical therapist, a "mobile person" who makes sure Wilson is "moving the right way," a massage therapist and two chefs.

In addition to his performance staff, Wilson told Simmons that he has "all the toys" to boost performance.

"I got two hyperbaric chambers," Wilson said, which he said he uses up to four times a week.

(Athletes often use hyperbaric oxygen chambers, in which a person breathes pure oxygen in a pressurized setting, to aid in physical recovery and to improve sleep. According to the Mayo Clinic, the technique helps fight bacteria in the body and promotes healing, but there are also risks associated with the procedure.)

"I probably spend a million, if not more a year just on recovery," Wilson said.

Wilson, 31, who signed a four-year, $140 million contract last year, said he has been spending that much money for about the last five years.

But Wilson said his team and gadgets aren't the real secret to his success. "The biggest thing for me is the mental game," he said.

For over 10 years, Wilson has been working with Trevor Moawad, a mental conditioning expert (with whom Wilson owns executive coaching company Limitless Minds) to help him get in the right mindset before games. Wilson said Moawad has taught him not to be overly positive or negative in tough situations.

"[I]t's about being neutral in the midst of chaos. So when we're playing on Sunday night against the Vikings and things aren't going great and they just made an interception, unfortunately, and now our defense gets a huge stop on fourth and one, I go straight to neutral," Wilson said.

That allows him to slow down his thinking and execute a vision for how he and his team are going to win the game, he said. "[I]n the midst of chaos, while everybody else is moving fast and everybody's talking fast, I try to talk slow. And that's something that I've really captured, I think."

Wilson said consistency is also key: He said he works out 363 to 365 days a year, only taking off Thanksgiving and sometimes Christmas.

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