Q & A With Rian Lindell Kicker-Buffalo Bills.

Rian Lindell, a kicker for the Buffalo Bills, shares with us some of his background, current status, training, and also views about high school and college athletics. See what he has to say.

Q: Can you give us a little background on your road to the NFL?

    A: I started kicking in 8th grade and continued on through high school. I was an invited walk-on at Washington State University in the fall of 1995. I played at Washington State for 5 years. Dallas picked me up as a free agent in 2000.


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    I competed for the kicking position there and was released at the end of training camp. Week 5 of the season, I was picked up by the Seattle Seahawks where I played 3 seasons with them before signing a 4 year contract with the Buffalo Bills in March 2003.

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Q: What are your most effective workout routines during the season?

    A: I usually do a light pool workout (mostly doing mock kicks in the water), core and stability work, and running. I also do lower body weights along with 3 days a week of field work (IE: field goals, kick-offs).


Q: Mindset is crucial in athletics, what gets you psyched up for Sundays?

    A: Yes, mindset is crucial, but that comes in different forms. As a kicker, it is important to stay low key and calm, so I try not to get too psyched up for games. I just try to go through the same routines and mental checklists each and every game. It's very comparable to a professional golfer, I would imagine... getting too psyched up would absolutely throw off the mechanics of the swing... same thing with kickers.


Q: You have to handle unbelievable amounts of pressure in game situations, how do you stay focused?

    A: I have total trust in the routine that I've created for myself through the season and the off-season. Believe in the preparation.


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Q: What kicking drills keep your leg on target?

    A: When out on the field, I do one-step field goals. After warming up with that activity, I go on to normal approach field goals and kick-offs. Other than that, I do lower body weights 2 times a week and run 2 times a week.


Q: Do you think sport specific training is an effective method for high school and college students?

    A: I definitely think it's effective in college since most athletes at that level play only one sport. In high school, I think it's important to take advantage of playing as many sports as you want to, so sport specific training shouldn't be quite as much of a focus.

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    Plus as a developing athlete in high school, cross-training has great benefits, as many times skill sets and muscle memory and development transfer from sport to sport.


Q: What's your outlook on the recent accusations by Jose Canseco, and the allegations against Balco?

    A: As a fan, it's disappointing that these athletes have put doubts in people's minds regarding their ability to achieve certain accomplishments. I'm not sure I agree with Canseco's decision to bring everyone down with him. I don't believe his motives are with the best of intentions.


Q: Do you think that modern sports teach kids the discipline and teamwork that it once did?

    A: I think it depends on what type of coaching these kids get. I hate to give a two-sided answer, but it really does depend on that. I'm sure there are coaches out there that try to teach the kids to work hard and act as a team.

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    However, there are also coaches out there who want to win, not for the kids' sake, but for their own glory and will only play the best players.


Q: What are your most effective methods of injury prevention?

    A: Stretching and warming up are two of the most important aspects of any sport to prevent injuries.


Q: Have you ever used plyometrics, if so, what kind did you use?

    A: Yes, I have included hurdles and box jumps in my workouts.


Box Jumps
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Hurdles
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Q: Supplements are a valuable tool in personal fitness, what supplements do you use during the season?

    A: Mostly a good protein supplement, especially during heavy training periods. Other than that, I just try to eat right with the correct amount of carbs and protein and get the nutrition that way.


Q: How important is nutrition, and what program do you have to keep gas in the tank?

    A: Extremely. It fuels the body and prepares you to perform at peak levels. I try to get plenty of carbohydrates for energy a couple nights before the game. The rest of the week I try to eat balanced meals.

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Q: Who's the toughest player to compete against, anyone that talks serious trash?

    A: Since my job is a "solo art," I really only compete with the goal posts. And I don't hear much trash talking from them.


Q: Do you have a personal trainer, how important are personal trainers?

    A: No, but I do have access to several strength coaches at our facility. I do think that personal trainers are very effective in most cases as it certainly gives people the foundation to train properly and minimize the risk of injury and they make people keep their appointments!


Q: If personal trainers are unavailable, what are some effective alternatives?

    A: Magazines and the internet are good sources of basic workout programs. Also, I believe that calisthenics (ie sit-ups, push-ups, lunges, etc) are as good as anything in a pinch.


Q: What are some words of encouragement for the hopeful athletes of tomorrow?