Lafayette, IN— Leaders at the Lafayette Police Department in Lafayette, Indiana, strive to hire officers healthy and retire them healthy. Recently, in keeping with that goal, the LPD has partnered with O2X, utilizing the O2X Physical Fitness Test (PFT) and O2X Tactical Performance App, to give their officers the tools and resources they need to lead healthier lives and be fit for the demands of their jobs as first responders.
Earlier this year, when two members of the LPD went to an O2X course in Illinois, they saw first-hand that the content aligned with their values. One officer, LPD Sergeant Ian O’Shields, who attended the course, says he appreciated O2X’s holistic approach to wellness, performance, stress management, and sleep.
O’Shields says a lot of the content at that first event seemed similar to what they’ve pushed out to their guys before, but he appreciated how O2X presented the material. “You have the program in a nice package, you have the PT aspect, which we really like,” O’Shields says. “You know, it’s run by professionals, people that are credible.”
O’Shields and other department leadership recognized that it can be difficult to introduce new programs internally, and saw the value O2X could bring to their department, so they called on O2X to implement their physical testing. “This is something we’ve been working on for several years, as far as implementing a PT Test,” O’Shields says. “So I think it was good to have a third party come in and do the assessment and do the talk,” he said, recognizing that it is sometimes challenging to introduce changes to veteran officers.
On October 6 and 8th, O2X Specialists put 140 members of the Lafayette PD through the proven O2X PFT. The test, consisting of pushups, squats, pull ups, plank hold, and an aerobic capacity assessment, was named for a fallen Boston Firefighter, Scott Salman. Scott attended the first O2X workshop and held a plank for more than five minutes, outlasting every other participant. He was a veteran who served in the U.S. Army, and he proudly served over 21 years as a Boston Firefighter, before losing his battle with cancer at the age of 59.
O2X Specialists also did body composition analysis for everyone who came through. With that information, they will be delivering individual reports to each officer and a comprehensive overall report to the leadership that will cover body comp and PFT scores.
“The LPD officers really gave it their all this week, and it was an honor to work with them,” says Brice Long, experience director and lead instructor for the week. “The goal of these assessments was to establish a baseline for the individual officers and department as a whole. From here, each person knows what areas to focus on for improvement – that might be one event from the PFT, body composition, or a combination.”
“What I like about the O2X PT test is that it gives them a laid out format that’s been tested,” O’Shields says. “You know, the age based, gender based, so they have something to strive for, categories to strive for, versus us just coming up with our own test.”
This is just the beginning of the new relationship between O2X and the LPD. O2X will return for annual testing, and the department will receive on-going support from O2X, including the use of the O2X Tactical Performance App. “As far as the app, obviously it’s a great resource; I think it’s good for folks that need that encouragement, need those resources,” O’Shields says. “We’re going to utilize the whole package in some way, shape, or form, moving forward.”
While on site in Lafayette, one of O2X’s messages to the participants of the LPD is,“You train for the job you have, so you can enjoy the retirement you deserve,” very much in line with the department’s goals for its officers.