Austria: Dacia Vikings QB Jake Sullivan coping with COVID-19 crisis

The global Covd19 crisis has changed the lives of everyone on the planet.

The key to coping has been to stay resilient and adjust to the situation – a fact that is also true for pro athletes.

With gyms closed and team practices canceled, professional athletes have been forced to stay fit and active at home by themselves. This is especially challenging if your body, your shape, and your athletic skills are your livelihood.

Dacia Vikings quarterback, pro US import Jake Sullivan,  opens up to Kiki Klepsch about the two past extraordinary months and about the impact that the stay-at-home order, the public restrictions and the lack of team practices have had on him.

Do you notice any overall changes regarding your conditioning or strength? 

Jake: My condition has greatly increased due to my newfound love of running. I have always dreaded running, but recently it has been my favorite form of exercise. It’s hard to tell if my strength has changed with not being able to work out with weights, but I have become more balanced overall (strength, endurance, balance).

What’s the latest about your throwing skills? 

Jake: Throwing a football is something I have been doing for 20+ years, so it’s a skill that fortunately will not be forgotten after a month. With that being said, I have found ways to still do footwork drills and work on the mobility of my upper body to decrease chance of injury.

In 2018 Jake Sullivan broke several records at his College (, he was named Division II Quarterback Of The Year (DivII-Leader in Total Offense, Passing Yards per Game & Points responsible for per Game). “I’ve never had a quarterback play at the level Jakeb Sullivan performed at in 2018. He put together a season for the ages,” commented Hardrockers HC Tinker on the accomplishments the Dacia Vienna Vikings playmaker achieved during his college career. Photo (c) Rapid City Journal

Did yoga somehow make you or parts of your body more flexible? 

Jake: Yoga has helped my overall physical flexibility as well as my mental stability. It has sharpened my mind just as much as it has my body. It may seem silly, but I never understood how important your breathing is to your movement and mobility.

Are there any other changes you notice about your body or shape? 

Jake: Considering yoga and running long distances is relatively new for me, my body has responded very well. I have noticed that I am beginning to form a lot of lean muscle and my mental clarity is at an all-time high.

“Yoga has helped my overall physical flexibility as well as my mental stability”, says Vienna Vikings QB Jakeb Sullivan. Photo (c) Jake Sullivan Private

What about your nutrition or sleeping habits – Did you notice a change within the past eight weeks? 

Jake: Initially I had a tough time falling asleep, but as the quarantine progressed, I developed a good routine and have been getting a solid 8 hours of sleep each night. Nutritionally, I tried to experiment with new dishes and meals, but I have decided to stick with what I’m good at: eggs, oatmeal, rice bowls, and lots of vegetables and fruits.

So did your weight change? 

Jake: My weight has increased by a small amount (1-2 kg).

Today, Monday, May 18, the Dacia Vienna Vikings will start on-field team practices in small groups again – following all government guidelines as well as health & safety regulations. 

Interview: Kiki Klepsch
Pictures: Hannes Jirgal, Jake Sullivan Privat, Rapid City Journal