Some athletes use downtime for a beach holiday or training sessions.
Star quarterback Aaron Rodgers took a different approach, emerging this week from four days in a small underground room devoid of natural light.
The owner of Sky Cave Retreats told US sports network ESPN that Mr. Rodgers had stayed in a 300sq ft (28sq m) space – a bit smaller than an average American hotel room.
It has a queen bed, a bathroom and a meditation mat on the floor.
Although there is no sunlight, owner Scott Berman told the network the room is equipped with lights that can be turned on, along with a queen bed, bathroom and meditation mat. Guests are free to come and go and wander around in the surrounding woods in southern Oregon.
Mr. Berman says he checks on guests once a day, and that his retreat’s dark rooms are booked solid for the next 18 months.
Such retreats are listed online for $1,400 (£1,160) a week.
There’s been speculation that the 39-year-old Rodgers, who has played 18 seasons for the Packers and has won one Super Bowl, will retire or be traded to another team.
He has not confirmed whether he wants to continue playing, but before going into the retreat he explained his reasoning on a podcast.
“I think we could all use a dose of turning our phones off once in a while and unplugging from society,” he told The Pat McAfee Show.
“It’s an opportunity to do a little self-reflection in some isolation and after that, I feel like I’ll be a lot closer to that final, final decision,” he said. “I’ve had a number of friends who’ve done it and they had profound experiences.”
The quarterback has a reputation for unconventional, sometimes controversial, views on health and wellness.
In 2020 he went to Peru after the NFL season to take the psychedelic plant ayahuasca.
He was the most prominent American football player to refuse a vaccine against Covid-19, at one point saying he had been “immunised” against the disease. He later said he had taken a weakened form of the virus by mouth but was allergic to an ingredient in some Covid vaccines.
In one interview he blamed a “woke mob” and “cancel culture” for creating the controversy around his vaccination status.
In a 2017 interview, he said he supports civil liberties, human rights and addressing climate change, and he’s defended NFL players who kneeled as a protest against racial injustice.
On the playing field, Rodgers was voted the league’s most valuable player in 2020 and 2021, but had a relatively disappointing year in 2022, with the Packers failing to make the NFL playoffs.