Archive for the ‘Army’ Category

COMBAT SWIMMER STROKE: MOVEMENTS, DEMO & PROGRAM   Leave a comment

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Stew Smith (Navy SEAL) published a great article on learning the Combat Swimmer’s Stroke that ncludes a breakdown of the movements, video demonstrations, and a 5-day program for training. This is a great swimming stroke to learn for people who are training to pass physical fitness screening tests that involve swimming (e.g. PST for BUD/S slots), or someone who is just looking for an effective and fficient swimming stroke that can be used for a sustained period of time, including in open water. Check it out the ful article and videos HERE!

RANGER SCHOOL TEACHES RESILIENCE   Leave a comment

size0“Two of the things I learned [at Army Ranger School] is that you can always take another step … that’s more of a figurative idea for me than literal, but the concept still applies,” he said. “I can always push further than I am right now, regardless of how cold, wet, tired or hungry I am … more in this case, injured. The second takeaway I got from Ranger school was that most failure is between the ears, and that is to say, really the only thing that can stop me is me … from an internal perspective, that’s what has helped me keep the positive outlook and the forward momentum that I have at this point.” Learn something from the incredible story and indomitable spirit of CPT Edward “Flip” Klein. Read the full story HERE.

STEW SMITH (NAVY SEAL) WORKOUTS – MAY 13, 2013   Leave a comment

swimpt1-300x300Here are Stew Smith’s (Navy SEAL) recommended workouts for today. Choose a workout in preparation for your fitness test or goals:

Navy SEAL
500yd Swim
Push-ups 2 min (max)
Sit-ups 2 min (max)
Pull-ups 2 min (max)
1.5 mile Run

AFPJ PAST
500m Swim
1.5 mile Run
Push-ups 2 min (max)
Sit-ups 2 min (max)
Pull-ups 2 min (max)

Army Ranger
Pushups 2 min (max)
Sit-ups 2 min (max)
Pull-up 2 min (max)
5 mile Run

– or –

Upper Body Round Robin

1 minute of pushups (min 40)
1 minute of sit-ups (min 40)
Pull-ups (min 6) not timed
Dips (min 6) not timed
Bench press 80% body weight (min 6) not timed
20 ft rope climb in body armor or weight vest (just 1… pass or fail event)
1 minute kip-ups (min 6) (pullup with a kip)
4 x 25 m shuttle run (max 24 seconds)
5 mile run (max 40 minutes) or 5 mile ruck march (75 min max, 45lbs dry weight)

ROPE COIL & CARRY   Leave a comment

Knot tying is an important skill for everything from outdoor sports and spec ops to moving grandma’s mattress on the roof of your car. One of my personal goals is to revisit and improve my knot tying skills by reviewing the examples in Basic Seamanship, which you can also review HERE. ITS Tactical has been running a very good “Knot of the Week” series for a couple of years and this week’s feature covers how to coil and carry rope for climbing or rappelling.

MOTIVATIONAL MOMENT #3: T-11 PARACHUTE JUMP VIDEO   Leave a comment

Awesome motivating vid from XVIII Airborne Corps of a paratrooper making his first jump with the T-11! Hoo-aaaaahhhhh!

LEADERSHIP IN THE LEANING REST #2 (GRTFC LEADERSHIP SERIES)   1 comment

The Center for Complex Operations within the National Defense University (Washington DC) publicized U.S. Army Doctrine 2015 today. The Mission Command Center of Excellence at the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center states “Doctrine 2015 captures the essential lessons learned from 10+ years of persistent conflict,” and has made the series of Army Doctrine Publications (ADP’s) publicly available and accessible HERE. One of these is ADP 7-0, Training Units and Developing Leaders. I consistently find lessons in reviewing theoretical and applied leadership models, and reviewing ADP 7-0 was no exception. Here are a few key points on leadership development that I took away from looking at ADP 7-0:

1. “Self-development is as important as institutional training and operational assignments. Self-development is a personal responsibility. Self-development enhances qualifications for a current position or helps prepare an individual for future positions. Individuals are responsible for their own professional growth and for seeking out self-development opportunities. Soldiers and civilians sustain their individual strengths and address gaps in their skills and knowledge. However, for self-development to be effective, all Soldiers and civilians must be completely honest with themselves to understand both personal strengths and gaps in skills, knowledge, and behaviors—and then take the appropriate, continuing steps to enhance their capabilities.”

2. “The self-development training domain is planned, goal-oriented learning that reinforces and expands the depth and breadth of an individual’s knowledge base, self-awareness, and situational awareness; complements institutional and operational learning; enhances professional competence; and meets personal objectives. Within this domain, Army leaders expect Soldiers and Army civilians to fill in their skills, knowledge, and behavior gaps from institutional training and operational assignments.”

3. “Effective leaders understand that change is inevitable in any operational environment. The time to react to change can be short. Adaptability comes from training under complex, changing conditions, with minimal information available to make decisions.”

4. “Training prepares units and individuals to be resilient. Training must prepare units and Soldiers for the stress of operations. Unit training plans must incorporate programs that improve individual and collective mental and physical fitness.”

5. Principles of Leader Development
– Lead by example.
– Develop subordinate leaders.
– Create a learning environment for subordinate leaders.
– Train leaders in the art and science of mission command.
– Train to develop adaptive leaders.
– Train leaders to think critically and creatively.
– Train your leaders to know their subordinates and their families.

These are principles of leadership development that may justifiably be generalized to business, community work, family life and personal conduct. You can use this short list from my notes to review your own current status as a leader in development — and leaders are ALWAYS in development. If you or your team want to experientially engage with learning and applying these principles for purposes of leadership development, contact me – Tom Delaney – at greatriverfitness@gmail.com. You can access the original copy of ADP 7-0 HERE.

S.E.R.E. READING LIST   Leave a comment

My approach to tactical fitness training has four key components: physical fitness; land and riverine navigation; team leadership; and situational awareness. This is different from what you will encounter in many other tactical fitness programs which focus solely on physical training at the expense of developing mental fitness and leadership skills. My goal is to develop a trainee into a someone who can assume a leadership role in crisis situations, whether in the field or in the office. The physical dimension of training is matched with an equally important (if not more important) mental dimension of training. Being able-bodied is not enough! A leader must be able-minded in crisis situations, for her or himself, and especially when others are not and are counting on the leader for a survival or success strategy.

The United States Air Force’s Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape program recently publicized a reading list of the books most read and referred to by SERE Specialists. SERE Specialists train special operations teams on methods for surviving in a variety of wilderness environments with minimal (if any) equipment, how to evade capture, hot resist captors if taken prisoner, and how to escape captors. The mental challenge of these types of situations is off the scale. One Navy SEAL commented that BUD/S (SEAL training selection) was tough, but that there were experiences in SERE that he was glad he only had to get through once. All of this is to say that this reading list is HIGHLY VALUABLE INFORMATION, not only for anyone who aspires to a special operations career, but also to anyone who wants to cultivate the self-confidence, attitude and perspective required of a high performing team and its leader. Here is the list, I am placing two asterisks “**” next to the texts I have read and personally recommend! For more info, contact me, Tom Delaney (Tactical Fitness Trainer) at greatriverfitness@gmail.com!

SERE BOOK LIST
by RC DeLano

A. GENERAL

1. Be expert with Map & Compass, The Orienting Handbook** by Bjorn Kjellstrom. Joline Press, Any Edition.

2. Map Reading and Land Navigation, FM 21-26 (1987), FM 3-25.26, (2011)** by Headquarters Department of the Army.

3. The Basic Essentials of Map & Compass by Cliff Jacobson. ICS Books, Inc., 2007.

4. A Comprehensive Guide to Land Navigation on GPS by Noel J. Hotchkiss. Alexis Pub; 3rd edition, 1999

5. GPS Made Easy by Lawrence Letham. The Mountaineers Books, 2008.

6. AF Regulation 64-4, Vol 1, Search and Rescue Survival Tree by Department of the Air Force, 1985.

7. The SAS Survival Handbook** by John Wiseman. William Morrow Paperbacks, 2009.

8. Staying alive in the Arctic, A Cold weather Survival Manual by Frank Heyl. American Petroleum Institute. 1976.

9. How to stay Alive in the Woods by Bradford Angier. Collier-Macmillan LTD, Any Edition

10. Fieldbook, Boy Scouts of America** by Boy Scouts of America. Older versions discuss more primitive skills.

11. Tom Brown’s Field Guides: Wilderness Survival; Edible and Medicinal Plants; Nature &ampSurvival for Children; Nature Observation & Tracking. By Tom Brown. Berkley Publishing Group

12. High Angle Rescue Techniques, A Student guide for Rope Rescue Classes by Tom Vines and Steve Hudson, Mosby-Year Book, Inc. 1992.

13. River Rescue by Les Bechdel and Slim Ray. Globe Pequot Press.

B. FLORA & FAUNA

1. Field Guide to Medicinal Plants by Bradford Angler. Stackpole Books, 1978.

2. Best-Tasting Wild Plants of Colorado and the Rockies by Bob Seebeck. Westcliffe Publishers, Inc., 1998.

3. Edible and Medicinal Plants of the Rocky Mountains and Neighboring Territories by Terry Willard Ph.D. Wild Rose College of Natural Healing, Ltd., 1992.

4. Plants of the Southern Interior, British Columbia by Ray Coupe, Roberta Parish, Dennis Lloyd. Lone Pine Publishing, 1996.

5. Deer from Field to Freezer by John & Geri McPherson. Ag Press, 1995

6. Step-by-Step, Brain Tanning the Sioux Way by Larry Belitz. Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, 1995.

7. Complete Guide to Game Animals by Leonard Lee Rue III. Grolier Book Clubs, Inc. 1981.

8. Catching More Freshwater Fish by Barney Rowe. Wellspring, 1993.

9. Tom Brown’s Field Guides, Wild Edible & Medicinal Plants: by Tom Brown. Berkley Publishing Group, 1983.

C. MEDICINE

1. Medicine for Mountaineering & Other Wilderness Activities by James A. Wilkerson, MD. The Mountaineers, 1992.

2. Wilderness Medicine, Management of Wilderness and Environmental Emergencies by Paul S. Auerbach, MD, MS, FACEP. Mosby-Year Book, Inc. 1995.

3. Hypothermia, Frostbite and Other Cold Injuries by James A. Wilkerson, MD. The Mountaineers, 1986.

4. The Outward Bound, Wilderness First-Aid Handbook by Jeffrey Isaac, PA-C. Lyons Press, 1998.

5. Emergency Care and Transportation of the Sick and Injured by American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. 7th Edition, 1999.

ARMY MAINTAINS 3-EVENT PHYSICAL FITNESS TEST   Leave a comment

After pilot testing a revised Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) with five events, the U.S. Army has determined to maintain the 3-event APFT for the near future. The maintained three events are: push-ups, sit-ups and the 2-mile run. In a report from U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC), Stephanie Slater states “TRADOC has determined that baseline Soldier physical readiness would be most effectively measured if linked to Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills, known as WTBD — tasks and drills determined over the last decade of war to be critical while conducting unified land operations…TRADOC will initiate a comprehensive study of Soldier fitness requirements to determine the best method to measure baseline Soldier physical readiness. The objective of the study is to select and recommend test events that have a functional connection to WTBD, and accurately measure baseline fitness against valid performance standards. The study is expected to begin in October 2012 and will include fitness experts from across the Army.” If you want a structured program to prepare for the APFT, contact me (Tom Delaney) at greatriverfitness@gmail.com. You can plan to prepare for the current APFT by reviewing TC 3-22.20, available for download HERE. You can read the full article from TRADOC HERE.

TECHNICAL vs. ADAPTIVE LEADERSHIP: TWO SIDES OF THE SAME COIN   Leave a comment

Yesterday I attended a book club session at my day job. The book we’re studying is Implementing the Findings of Research: Bridging the Gap Between Knowledge and Practice by Frances Wallace and her colleagues. Central questions for the discussion focused on the differences between authority and leadership, as well as the difference between technical and adaptive problems, solutions and leadership. For a short explanation of the latter, watch this vid with Dr. Ronald Heifetz …

I love this topic because it directly relates to asking oneself “Can I make good decisions when I need to? For myself? For others?” These are key questions anyone who is preparing to be a highly functional member of a team, or to be a highly functional leader of a team. I made a few points in our group discussion that I would like to share with you:

1. A highly effective team must always be adaptive because change is the fundamental nature of reality. It must be established as a norm for the team through good leadership.

2. There is no “or” — every technical problem also has an adaptive problem to look at as well.

3. Just because you have a technical solution, doesn’t mean you’ve fixed the adaptive problem.

4. Just becuase you have an adaptive solution, doesn’t mean you don’t need an immediate technical one.

5. A good system has a bridge between technical and adaptive processes, where every technical process includes time and space for thinking about the adaptive challenge.

6. The concrete simple example of a technical process for adaptive thinking is the Army After Action Review (AAR). See Army Training Circular 25-20 by clicking HERE. I would also note that the basic questions of the AAR work well at the personal level as well! The questions: What happened? Why did it happen? What did we (I) learn? What will we (I) do differently next time?

7. Paradox: Establishing team adaptivity and flexibility is supported by firmly established team identity, tradition and legacy.

We also discussed the times when a leader needs to “reset” a team and an operation. Coincidentally, I am reading a great book right now by Robert Needham (Navy SEAL) entitled Team Secrets of the Navy SEALs (a bargain at $6, mine is already filled with highlighting and notes). Our discussion of leadership nestles in well with page 5 of Needham’s book:

“If you [and your team] suddenly find that you’re in over your head, you had better sprout gills and come up with a way to complete the task properly [that’s adaptive]. If you need to reset, do so after careful consideration of the consequences and after developing other possible solutions. Simply throwing your hands in the air…like you, well, just don’t care is admitting defeat and quitting.”

Posted August 24, 2012 by Tom & Nicki Delaney in Army, Heroes of Tomorrow, Leadership, Navy, SEALs, Stew Smith

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LIVE LIFE LIKE A SPEC OPS MISSION! TRAIN FOR IT!   Leave a comment

What attitude do you bring to your life? Do you regard life as an important mission for yourself and others, involving no small amount of risk? Something to be approached with courage, planning, a well thought out strategy, and ideally with the loyal camaraderie of your team? Lots of people place Special Operations (“Spec Ops”) teams on a pedestal – SEALs, Rangers, Special Forces – but don’t apply the operating principles of these teams to the way they themselves approach their own lives. No matter who you are, there is plenty to learn and apply! Recently Men’s Health ran a pretty good short review of training principles and techniques across Spec Ops units, from physical training to mental training and back again. Check out the article and see if you pick up on a few good training ideas or a couple of principles to apply and improve your situational awareness and problem-solving ability. You can read the full article HERE.