Houston Texans take up MMA

Don’t expect to see  MMA coming to the Texans’ games, though. (Patric Schneider / AP)

NFL teams have been known to employ ballet, Pilates and yoga in offseason workouts, so why not mixed martial arts?

Craig Fitzgerald, the Houston Texans’ first-year strength and conditioning coach, came up with the idea and the Houston Chronicle found receptive players.

“[Thursday] is the first day we did that. It’s awesome, man,” Duane Brown, who was paired with guard Brandon Brooks, told the Chronicle. “Because the O-lineman, all we do is we strike people. You’re all about condition, but you like to hit people at the same time. So with the MMA training, you get to do a little bit of both. You get tired but you’re also working the muscles . . . I like it.”

But they’re only taking it so far.

“It’s not like we’re sparring with each other. It’s just like a heavy bag,” Brown said. “And we’ll sit there and we’ll punch for like, a minute straight. It doesn’t sound like a long time. But when you’re just punching continuously for a minute, it’s very tiring. It’s not some stuff where we would actually harm each other, but it’s just good conditioning.”

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.



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Cindy Boren · April 14, 2014