Robert Griffin, III is a larger than life figure to most people who live in the Washington DC area. Many people can recite his football statistics and injury status but what most people don’t know is that he was a military kid.
Raised as a military brat by noncommissioned officers, Robert Griffin III, nicknamed RG3, learned discipline early. It’s just one of many military-related qualities instilled by his mom, who served 12 years as an administrative supervisor before separating as a sergeant, and his dad, a petroleum specialist who retired as a sergeant after 21 years of service.
RG3′s mother, Jackie Griffin, is a remarkable woman. Like other military spouses, she worked double time to take care of her son and nurture his passion for athletics while her husband was deployed to Iraq. She attended every practice and game for Robert’s entire youth career.
Jackie is a woman I can relate to when she says, “My philosophy is once you have a child, you need to devote your life to making that child successful.”
You can read the full story of the Redskins star and his great mom/military spouse here. You can also watch the video of RG3 talking about how the values instilled in him by his parents have helped make him the man he is today.
I recently got a behind the scenes tour of The Washington Redskins Training Facility in Ashburn, Virginia. The facilities are cutting edge and the medical and training teams are beyond stellar.
A team can’t succeed if it isn’t healthy, so the players have every piece of training equipment and weights imaginable. They even have under water treadmills to help players continue to train when they need to keep weight off of an injury.
The treadmill moves underwater, keeping weight off of the player’s legs while the water provides resistance for additional training.
The team management takes the team’s health very seriously. The staff includes, but is not limited to: athletic trainers, orthopaedists, primary care physicians, neuro trauma consultants, and chiropractors.
Physical health is not complete with food to fuel it. The Redskins’ dining facilities cannot be called a team cafeteria. The place is more like a fine restaurant. Executive chef Antonio Orlando teams up with team staff to provide wholesome and healthy menus. Gone are the days of heavy meat and potatoes. The kitchen includes a fryer but it has never been used! Players even have constant access to bags of prepared frozen fruit to be combined with protein powders for smoothies made is top of the line blenders. There are no softdrinks available. Fresh bread is made daily and soup stock and pasta sauces are all made from scratch with healthy, often local, ingredients.
All work and no play is not a successful strategy, so the team also has what, as a mother to four boys, I’d call a playroom. The place has every video game console on the market, large screen televisions, snacks and comfortable sofas and chairs.
The tour of the facility showed me that the Redskins players, including, but not limited to, RG3, work hard and are well taken care of.
Hail to the Redskins!
Erin Henderschedt writes the blogs The Deployment Diatribes.