Westport did not have any future stars at this week’s NFL Combine.
But we did have EJ Zebro. And his work may have more of an impact on the game than any one of the 300-plus football hopefuls who put their running, jumping and lifting talents on display in Indianapolis.
Zebro owns TAP StrengthLab. At his downtown Westport center, the certified movement and performance coach shows people of all ages that intelligent, functional movement — coupled with awareness of their own bodies — can minimize, or even eliminate, pain they may feel from injuries.
It’s a message tailored for the NFL meat market.
Zebro was invited by Bill Parisi, Phil Simms’ personal trainer. He’s written a book about fascia training — exercises that improve the functioning of tendons, ligaments, joint capsules and muscular envelopes. One of Parisi’s chapters profiles Zebro.
The Westporter focused his talk on utilizing fascia training to help high-level athletes.
He also demonstrated an Optimal Human Motion machine. Developed by David Schmidt of Darien, and a key feature of Zebro’s TAP StrengthLab, it limits joint compression forces.
Once users become more “balanced,” they can focus on becoming more powerful. That appeals to the folks who swarmed the exhibit hall in Indianapolis.
One of Zebro’s first conversations was with Dan Dalrymple. He’s the New Orleans Saints strength and conditioning coach — and an NFL Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year.
He told Zebro about his own orthopedic issues — including difficulty moving his neck, and a bad knee. The Westport trainer worked on his fascia. Dalrymple hobbled over to the OHM machine. Ten minutes later, he finished his workout — pain-free.
Dalrymple raved about his experience. That sent other coaches flocking to Zebro.
Since returning home, Zebro has followed up with many of them. They may incorporate some of what he does into their own NFL routines.
Which means that in years to come, the stars you watch — or whom you pray stay healthy, for your fantasy teams — may owe a debt of gratitude to perhaps the only Westporter who attended the 2019 NFL Combine.