The Army H2F Initiative: Training Soldiers Physically, Mentally and Spiritually

Army Soldiers training in the mud for ACFT

Professional soldiers will soon get the kind of mental and emotional support and training that professional athletes receive, as the Holistic Health & Fitness (H2F) program picks up momentum. 

According to the U.S. Army, “H2F is a comprehensive, integrated, and immersive health and fitness system that generates lethal soldiers who are physically, mentally, and spiritually ready to engage with and overmatch the enemy in multi-domain operations.  The system accomplishes this by addressing the physical and non-physical components of fitness through performance professionals, programs, facilities, equipment, and education. H2F improves both individual soldier readiness and unit cohesion by enhancing unit integrity.”

This program in following closely on the heels of the introduction of a more rigorous fitness test - The Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT)             

Rally Fitness Has a Long History of Improving Military Fitness

Rally Fitness has developed an Army Combat Fitness Test Equipment Package. For more information on the ACFT package, just click here. 

Training for More than “Beach Muscles” 

While preparations for rolling out the new ACFT in October 2020, the Army Forces Command has selected 30 battalions to train with a select group of health and fitness professionals, to see what kind of support units it will need not only to implement a new PT test, but to build combat effectiveness and reduce injuries to the degree the Army is looking for with its this H2F initiative.

“In the Army, we all like to train our beach bodies," Maj. Gen. Malcolm Frost, head of the Center for Initial Military Training, said at the AUSA annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

For example, the ever - popular chest and arms.

“What we do not train is the posterior muscle groups and our core, and that’s why so many soldiers have shoulder injuries, knee injuries, lower back and hip injuries — because we have not trained our bodies for the life of a soldier,” he added.

According to this article “Ideally, over the next decade, the Army hopes to build Soldier Performance Readiness Centers, complete with an ACFT field, a terrain run park and facilities to practice with weights, kettlebells and medicine balls.

Working out with Rally Fitness equipment for ACFT
“Those centers will also have experts on site to support soldiers in a diet and exercise plan.”

In order to ensure that leaders from the bottom to the top are in synch with these fitness principles, professional military education at every level will include more advanced instruction on health and fitness.

The article concludes, “For example, a soldier will learn the basics of healthy behaviors and movement in their basic training or basic officer courses, then work their way up. Exercise science will be part of the curriculum at the Basic Leader Course for future sergeants, while officers at the Pre-Command Course will learn to plan, budget and assess their own H2F programs.”

The Research Component of H2F is Critical

On April 30 - May 1, 2019, Rally Fitness and other well-known suppliers of Army fitness equipment participated in the first “H2F Industry Day and Exposition,” held at Fort Eustis in Newport News, Virginia. This two-day event featured an Industry Day with speakers from The U.S. Army Center for Initial Military Training (USACIMT) and U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC), followed by an Exposition of related technologies fulfilled by Industry partners.

This Industry Day featured presentations from subject matter experts from each of the six categories of research 

The Six Categories of Research Include:

  • “Smart” Training Equipment
  • Performance Assessment and Data Analysis
  • Physical Equipment and Storage Solutions
  • Cognitive Enhancement
  • Injury Prevention and Mitigation
  • Nutrition/Dietetics

For more information on the Army’s H2F initiative, click here.

 

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