Pittsburgh, PA, Dec. 29, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — What’s the secret to a more productive 2022 for some of pro football’s best athletes?
It isn’t more time in the gym. Professional athletes already spend ample time staying fit. Nor is it better nutrition, seeing that most football stars are finely tuned machines who already obsess about what they put in their bodies.
The answer is less non-essential time on screens, phones and social media platforms and more time to focus on themselves.
The average American spends more than five hours each day on their mobile device, with teenagers spending more than seven hours connected to screens during the pandemic. Some studies even suggest that humans may spend decades of their lifespan looking at a screen, either via TV, laptop or mobile device. These issues extend to what young people are doing on those screens. According to Instagram’s own internal data, one-in-five teens say that the social media platform makes them feel worse about themselves.
In one locker room, its team leaders are doing something about it the best they can, even as pro football moves meetings online to combat the omicron variant.
T.J. Watt, currently pro football’s sack leader and a candidate for the league’s Defensive Player of the Year award, is leading the charge for less non-essential screen time among players on his team. Watt has committed to putting his phone and other screens down for a week, starting December 29th, as his team finishes the regular season with games against Cleveland and Baltimore. This does not include essential team meetings, which have been moved online as pro sports battles the pandemic like the rest of us.
Watt’s brother Derek is joining the effort, as are at least five other Pittsburgh teammates (Chukwuma Okorafor, Devin Bush, Trai Turner, Joe Haden and Diontae Johnson) all of them committing to less screen time, while raising awareness to screen and social attention in 2022 through the #TwentyYOU campaign. Players will post a static post on Instagram notifying their followers that they’ll be logging off for a bit and why, encouraging their followers to do the same as they head into 2022.
“We know that it’s impossible for us to detach completely, especially with team meetings being moved online and needing to study game film, but that’s it,” T.J. said. “We’ve all seen the dangers of screen and social media addiction, especially during the pandemic. We’d like to ideally be communicating more in-person, understanding each other face-to-face, and creating acceptance offline, instead of intolerance online.”
The Pittsburgh campaign is being championed by Watt’s supplement sponsor Six Star Pro Nutrition (www.sixstarpro.com), which keeps one of pro football’s best fueled with its award-winning line of proteins, pre-workouts and hydration products. In recent months, the brand has taken stances on where they’d like to see improvement in the sports world, including gender equality and Name, Image and Likeness rights for student athletes.
“Excess screen time has become a major problem in our society, whether it is tempting our ever-futile attention spans, showcasing unrealistic body images and cyberbullying – often with racial, homophobic or anti-semitic contexts,” said Jarrod Jordan, Chief Marketing Officer at Iovate Health Sciences International Inc., the makers of Six Star® branded products. “What T.J. and Pittsburgh’s football team is doing through the #TwentyYOU campaign is noble in an era where athletes are keenly aware of their self-marketing responsibilities and sacrificing that for their own and their team’s collective good will only benefit them going forward.”
In recent years, athletes from all sports have been subject to cyberbullying, a trend that has only increased with the growing influence of fantasy sports and sports gambling, including in Pennsylvania where it is legal.
“A lot of people can act like someone they’re not behind a screen,” Derek Watt said. “But the easiest thing you can do to shelter yourself from that abuse is to ignore the noise and focus on yourself. Staying away from screens is an easy start and one I hope we can stick to in 2022 and beyond.”
Six Star® products are available nationwide at Walmart®, Walgreens®, Amazon® and other fine retailers. For more information, visit www.sixstarpro.com.
About Iovate Health Sciences International:
Iovate Health Sciences International Inc. (“Iovate”) is a dynamic, leading-edge nutritional company that delivers some of the highest quality, most innovative and effective active nutrition products in the world with distribution in more than 130 countries worldwide. Due to our commitment to research, development and innovation, Iovate, through its Six Star Pro Nutrition® brand, is globally recognized as one of the leading sports nutrition brands in the industry and continues to be one of the elite brands redefining performance through cutting-edge products and high-quality ingredients. Headquartered in Oakville, Ontario, Canada, Iovate is a family of more than 300 employees, six leading nutritional brands and growing, with effective products that can be found across the globe.