Pro Water Polo Player Ben Hallock Hosts Reddit AMA

On May 2, 2024, Ben Hallock participated in a Reddit AMA, addressing questions about his professional water polo career, experiences with Team USA, and personal life. Get a brief summary of the AMA and some of Hallock’s top responses here.

Who is Ben Hallock?

Ben Hallock is the current captain of the 2024 USA men’s Olympic water polo team. He’s a 26 year old, 6’6, 250 pound center forward that has been playing water polo for quite some time at the highest level of competition – winning 2 consecutive Champions League titles with his club team.

  • Attended Stanford and won the NCAA championship.
  • Made his olympic debut in Rio in 2016 with team USA.
  • Currently plays as a professional water polo player on the Italian team, Pro Recco.
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Reddit AMA Summary

Hi! I’m Ben Hallock @ben_hallock

u/nbcOlympics May 2nd @ 2pm EST Ask me anything!

Ben answered a ton of questions in the AMA thread, commenting on his experience in water polo, giving advice, and sharing his thoughts on upcoming competition. He’s most excited to play against Italy this summer because a lot of his teammates at Pro Recco play for the Italian National Team. A matchup against Croatia would also be exciting for him as they’re the reigning world champs.

He’s also excited for the future of water polo, writing that he’s been fortunate enough to play with some incredible young players like Ryder Dodd on Team USA and Francesco Condemi on Pro Recco.

Hallock offered a lot of advice on playing the set position and shooting technique. Regarding set, Ben emphasized, ‘Low man wins—always win the fight for leverage,’ and advised to ‘focus on using your shoulder/back/arms as your second pair of eyes to feel the defender so you can anticipate his movement as the ball is coming.’ When it comes to shooting, he noted, ‘I think it’s all about intention. You have to put yourself in the mindset that you’re in a game so you can emulate those emotions’ and emphasized ‘repetition’.

Overall, Ben is starting to feel the pressure to perform at the upcoming Olympics. The team is putting in the work and preparing for the games. Ben noted that, ‘We have lots of plays to run that can take the pressure off of the center and help us get good looks or draw exlcusions!’

To wrap up the AMA Hallock jokingly promised to avoid getting another brutality call this summer.

Check out the schedule for the water polo games at the 2024 summer Olympics.

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Hallock’s Top Questions and Answers

Here are some of the most popular questions and answers from Ben Hallock’s Reddit AMA.

u/Thepacifist4191 asked: “My impression is that you’re one of the few Americans playing pro in Europe. Why do you think more Americans don’t make the jump after college? Or do I have it wrong, and do a lot more than I realize play pro in Europe now? And I’m a big fan – good luck in Paris!”

Ben replied: “I think this year we have about 15 guys playing in Europe!! Typically guys who want to make an Olympics will be the ones to go abroad, but I think everyone should its been an experience of a lifetime.”

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Check out dryland workouts from Team USA.

u/drinkicedcoffe asked: What out of water training helps most with your game?

Ben replied: “Personally, core is the most important part of my dry land training. There is so many movements in the water that rely on your abs being strong.”

u/obvious_bot asked a few questions:

  • Who is the set defender that’s given you the most trouble in your career? What did he do that made it so tough?
  • What’s your favorite goal you’ve ever scored?
  • Who was best player you’ve ever played with or against?

Ben’s response:

  • Alexander Ivovic–and thankfully he plays on my team in Europe! He is just a beast physically and it just always feels like I was pushing against a wall that wouldn’t budge.
  • My favorite goal that I’ve ever scored was probably the game winning goal against USC in the NCAA semi finals.
  • See my answer to number 1.
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u/Ghosthost2000 asked: “How old were you when you started playing? I’m the parent of two young water polo players. What’s your training routine like? What’s the best training advice for young players?”

Ben said, “I believe I was 9 or 10 years old when I started playing! Now my training routine consist of 4 double days a week with at least two games and then hopefully an off day worked in somewhere. My best training advice wouldn’t be something to do inside the pool but to be a student of the game outside! Watch all the great games on YouTube from the olympics etc!”

Check out our favorite YouTube channels for water polo.

u/l339 asked, “Who pays for your salary and how much do you earn on average with Waterpolo?”

Ben’s response: “It depends who owns your team! In Pro Recco we have an owner who sponsors us and covers all expenses and salaries. Other teams are part of a bigger sports clubs or have private company sponsors. I am not sure how much the average water polo player makes–I just know my own experiences!”

u/cawin asked, “What drills do you do to shoot harder/more accurate?”

Ben’s response: “When practicing shooting I think it’s all about intention. You have put yourself in the mindset that your in a game so you can emulate those emotions.”

See how fast water polo players shoot.

u/airwatertea asked, “What’s the hardest swim set that you had to do?”

Ben said: “20 x 100 best average on the 1:30. Extremely painful.”

Read the full AMA here

Hi Reddit! I’m professional water polo team captain and Team USA Olympic hopeful Ben Hallock. I’m excited to be here so Ask Me Anything!
byu/nbcolympics inolympics

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