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Alexandria firefighter recruits get training on staying mentally and physically well

Alexandria firefighter recruits get training on staying mentally and physically well. (O2x)
Alexandria firefighter recruits get training on staying mentally and physically well. (O2x)
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Firefighters are dying from heart attacks, suicide and cancer at alarming rates.

Since 1995, nearly half of all on-duty fatalities have been linked to sudden cardiac death.

Starting today, the Alexandria Fire Department will hold 4-day training clinic for 27 new recruits to focus on mental and physical wellness in order to achieve peak performance on the job. The department has brought in O2x Human Performance to work with the new recruits.

They are a training and education company founded by former Navy SEALs. As tactical athletes, first responders risk their lives daily to keep their communities safe. They endure physical and, more importantly, mental stress throughout their careers. As a result, it’s become critical that they train their bodies properly to stay healthy, but also maintain their mental health.

This workshop is part of an ongoing contract with AFD to assist and support both Fire and EMS personnel who stand to benefit from the overall health and wellness curriculum provided by O2X certified professionals across a variety of fields germane to promoting physical and mental agility and longevity.

From Sep 28th – Oct 1st, dozens of new recruits will participate in this innovative mental and physical health, wellness, and resilience training workshop.

During the sessions, participants will learn about nutrition, strength training, sleep, stress management, and resilience. The O2X team consists of hundreds of specialists, including U.S. Special Operations veterans, strength and conditioning coaches, mental performance experts, PhDs in nutrition and psychology, as well as sleep scientists – all dedicated to helping first responders elevate their human performance.

The pandemic and economic hardship is causing widespread mental health issues.

In many nations, suicide and substance abuse rates are on the rise.

It can be hard to spot the signs of mental ill-health in friends, colleagues, and relatives. 7News is on your side with some things to look for.

  • Behavioral change
  • Signs of withdrawal
  • Watch out for physical changes
  • Be aware of life situations
  • Check in with the person
  • Be empathetic

O2X Human Performance has successfully trained thousands of first responders and collaborated with hundreds of public safety agencies nationwide to provide state-of-the-art training and education aimed specifically at helping first responders finish their careers as strong as they started.

“We’re excited to bring our programming back to Alexandria, Virginia” said Paul McCullough, Co-founder at O2X Human Performance. “This four-day workshop in September will act as a foundation for these firefighters to keep their physical health and mental wellness a part of their daily lives, in order to stay prepared for the demands of the job.”

The workshops will be held from 8 am to 4 pm at the Joshua Weissman Professional Development Center 1108 Jefferson Street, Alexandria, VA 22314.

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