Springbok star Kriel makes plans for life after rugby

Jesse Kriel (Getty Images)
Jesse Kriel (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Springbok and Bulls centre Jesse Kriel is relishing the life of a professional sportsman.
It's been a fine 2019 for Kriel, who has shone in midfield for the Bulls, helping the Pretoria-franchise finish as the best-placed South African outfit in this year's Super Rugby competition.

Kriel will now set his sights on the upcoming Test season with the Springboks, where he is expected to play a significant role in the team's quest for Rugby World Cup glory in Japan.

After the World Cup, Kriel will enjoy a stint of club rugby in Japan, but that should not stop him from adding to his 40 Test-cap resume, as the national team recently lifted the ban restricting overseas-based players from featuring for the Boks.

Kriel, however, knows that time at the highest level for a professional athlete is limited and has therefore already made plans for life after rugby, as he revealed in an exclusive interview with Sport24.

Kriel is renowned as one of the fittest players in the South African game and it's this passion for fitness that has helped put in place a career off the rugby field.

As a result, Kriel - along with Bulls conditioning coach Jacus Coetzee - founded Exalt Sport, a product that aids in muscle recovery.

"The whole Exalt idea was born when I found myself searching for a product in the market that would really help me get fully recovered and ready for the following day whilst also fitting into a 'usual day/life routine'," Kriel said.

"With myself being a professional athlete that competes at the highest level week in and week out, I needed something more than just your normal Epsom salt on the market. This is when myself and Jacus formulated Exalt. Our pharmaceutical grade salts are blended with carefully chosen 100% pure essential oils for ultimate recovery and relaxation."

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The burly midfielder, who can also operate at wing, added that the product has already been well received by other top-level athletes.

"Caster Semenya, Handre Pollard, Lood de Jager and Kevin Lerena are just a few to mention that are currently on board and using the product which shows that the best have confidence in Exalt."

At 25, Kriel no doubt has several years left as a professional rugby player, but he's confident that time constraints won't hamper his business on the side.

"We have great systems in place that see to the running of the business every day. I also find that it has helped to use the 'dead hours' between sessions during one's day a lot better.

"It's also been very stimulating being hands on and we have all learnt a huge amount about business and hiccups that come along with it," Kriel concluded.

For more on Exalt Sport, visit their website.

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