Q2 2023: Updates from On-site


Our science-backed human performance programs are delivered through in-person training, virtual resources, assessments, and analysis. The newest initiative in providing O2X’s world-class training involves the integration of a Human Performance Specialist at the core of a department or unit, implementing programming designed to improve the mental, physical, and emotional health of its members.

Check out what some of our On-site Specialists have been up to below, and check out https://www.o2x.com/approach/ to learn more about this unique O2X service.

Massachusetts National Guard (MANG)—

Devon Smith, On-site Specialist with Massachusetts National Guard:

The MA National Guard Warrior FIT team had a busy quarter as we transitioned to warmer weather and increased training opportunities. In April, we held two customized seminar events with both hands-on and classroom education. Senior Enlisted Airmen from the 104th Fighter Wing were offered two seminar options hosted by the Warrior FIT team during a professional development event at Barnes ANGB. The two seminar options focused on “Principles and Strategies of Developing a Successful PT Program” as well as “Operational Nutrition”. The performance team was invited to Camp Myles Standish by the 79th Troop Command leadership for the second installment of an ongoing seminar series. The Injury Prevention and Human Performance Specialists led Soldiers through a running seminar highlighting the importance of preparation, proper run pacing, as well as actionable running and breathing drills. In addition to customized resources for Units, we are beginning to schedule our H2F seminars for the remainder of the summer season. These seminars are part of an educational program designed to provide leadership with structured ways to implement H2F initiatives.

FY23 ½ Day Seminar Tracks

-Foundations of H2F (Entry-level overview of H2F)

-Pillars of Human Performance

-Optimization of Human Performance

-Mental and Sleep Readiness

-Nutritional Readiness 

-Physical Readiness

In a continuing partnership with the MANG Officer/Warrant Officer Candidate School, our performance team has provided ongoing support through Phase 0 of the incoming OCS class. At the May drill, candidates participated in a nutrition discussion with the Warrior Fit Dietitian. This was a follow-up event to an April PT session and resource brief for OCS. As a result of the support to OCS, Phase 0 candidates are participating in virtual and in-person consultations with the Warrior Fit program to help improve physical and nutritional readiness. Two OCS candidates were unable to pass the Standing Power Throw event in the ACFT and reached out to work with our strength and conditioning specialist. The specialist and SMs had 1:1 consultations at two locations across the state to improve technique and receive training recommendations. Both SMs passed the event and avoided being recycled through the school. 

Members of the deploying 126th Cyber Protection Battalion had a 75-minute presentation from the Warrior FIT program at their Yellow Ribbon event in June. This presentation covered Nutrition, Physical, Mental, and Sleep Readiness with an emphasis on the impact each domain has on the other. The upcoming deployment will challenge SMs in the transition to a new routine including overnight work shifts and schedule changes along with relocation within CONUS. Highlights of the discussion included how each domain of H2F can be leveraged to ease the transition to deployment and assist in improving wellness and performance both during work and around work shifts during personal time.

The end of June brought the start of our Warrior FIT Tier 1 Workshop Weekends beginning with our “Foundations” curriculum. We opened with an introduction from State CSM Campbell highlighting the importance and relationship between the 5 foundations of Holistic Health and Fitness (FM 7-22). In the coming quarter, we will be completing our Tier 1 series and continuing to support the force. 

Washington D.C. Fire Department

Conner Freeland, Program Manager with DC Fire & EMS:

The Integrated Specialist Program (ISP) at the D.C. Fire and EMS reached unprecedented success in the second quarter of 2023, setting new records across various key areas. With a focus on return to work and community engagement, the OSS team achieved remarkable outcomes, including work with 70+ new members, over 500 manual therapy/strength training sessions, and involvement across each battalion.

In the last 3 months, the ISP conducted an impressive 220 individual therapy sessions and nearly 300 individual strength training sessions, specifically tailored to support light-duty or injured members. As a testament to the program’s effectiveness, 8 members successfully returned to full duty. These outstanding results demonstrate the ISP’s commitment to facilitating a successful rehabilitation process and restoring members’ ability to perform their essential duties.  A proactive approach to injury prevention has played a crucial role in its achievements.  By working closely with the Police and Fire Clinic, along with the National Rehabilitation Hospital, the team has been diligent in providing quality care and to date, has seen 0 re-injury cases.  The constant communication between staffers, direct reporting, and 1-on-1 care has significantly reduced the number of injuries and improved the overall health and fitness levels of the workforce. Notably, members have continued to report the highest of remarks following program completion.

“I feel like I have made more progress with Steve in 2 months than I did with other therapists. Steve and O2X really helped me and I can’t recommend them enough. My recommendation is that every injured member should be informed about the program and evaluated by O2X. I fully endorse the program and feel like I am finally able to put my injury behind me.”

          DCFD officer on Light Duty

Across the department, The ISP made significant strides in equipment upgrades for the entire department, with finalized quotes and renderings submitted for 2 brand new builds for houses in SE DC The customization of equipment for each shift ensures that the training needs are met effectively. Furthermore, plans are underway to construct an expanded training facility at the Training Academy, enabling simultaneous Recruit Training and Return to Work programs. With state-of-the-art equipment, this upgraded facility will provide a comprehensive training environment for members.  These projects will in turn provide more equipment across the department through a reallocation process until funding is acquired to successfully equip all houses with the proper gear.

Extending its impact beyond the department walls, the ISP has been busy creating more opportunities for members to get active through a variety of activities!  OSS Tiffany Batsakis is leading a series of summer events ranging from biking and hiking activities, to promoting fitness and exercise outside of the gym walls.  These activities will offer more ways for members to learn and interact with their OSS team, and hopefully gain active hobbies outside of the district. The OSS team is also giving back to the community through engaging with the ACTION Youth Summer, a D.C. high school program during a six-week camp.   Eleven students were immersed in the program’s offerings, including customized training sessions, nutrition lectures, injury mitigation strategies, and fun games around the Training Academy.  This initiative not only enhances their camp experience but also offers valuable insights into the world of recruits and cadets, promoting a healthy and active lifestyle among the younger generation.  Lastly, our annual fitness challenge has been presented and will kick off in 1 week!  This year’s Summer Step Challenge was created as an inclusive challenge aimed to engage members who may not frequently visit a gym. With a weekly updating leaderboard and rewards for winners in each weight group at the end of the six-week challenge, the ISP hopes to foster a different perspective on health and wellness by simply getting up and getting active!

Frederick County Fire Department

Nate Blair, On-site Specialist with Frederick Co. Fire Department:

Throughout the 2nd quarter of 2023, Frederick has continued running at full speed, training 3 recruit classes simultaneously. On campus, we currently have 81 recruits in session. Recruit training takes place 5 days a week with 3 classes running sessions back to back to back. 

OSS Kayla continues to present on building resilience through the O2X EAT SWEAT THRIVE methodology as a portion of continuing education for all recruits. 

In addition to the recruit training and educational sessions, OSS Nate has been visiting stations to conduct Probationary PT Assessments for RC 32 during the month of June. These assessments ensure that the probationary firefighters meet the required physical standards established by FCFR, contributing to their preparedness and readiness for active duty. The Training Academy gym continues to see high foot traffic, with career members actively engaging in daily workouts to enhance their overall fitness levels. This dedicated commitment to self-improvement is commendable, as it reflects their determination to excel in their roles. Furthermore, OSS Nate has been approached by several recruits and career members seeking assistance with lingering injuries. Recognizing the importance of addressing these concerns, OSS Nate has been providing guidance and support to help them manage and alleviate their discomfort. By offering advice on injury prevention techniques, appropriate exercises, and potential modifications to their fitness routines, they are set on the path aiming to aid their recovery process while ensuring their continued progress towards peak physical performance. This comprehensive approach fosters a culture of well-being within the Training Academy, promoting the long-term health and success of all individuals involved.

OSS Nate has successfully onboarded the latest recruit class, Class 35, onto the O2x app. As part of this process, they were guided through the app’s functionality and provided detailed instructions on how to navigate its various features and utilize the wealth of valuable resources it offers. By familiarizing the recruits with the app’s interface and demonstrating its capabilities, they are now equipped with a valuable tool to optimize their performance and well-being. Through the O2x app, recruits in Class 35 now have access to a wide range of useful resources that can enhance their physical fitness, mental resilience, and overall readiness, enabling them to excel in their training and future endeavors.

Berkeley Public Safety

Gary Heron, Program Manager with Berkeley Public Safety

After a first quarter of 2023 dominated by fire academies, the second quarter allowed for a focus on the day-to-day operations of Berkeley public safety.  With schedules freed up from the daily rigors of supporting the academies, it allowed Gary and Jacqueline to get out and connect with more people across both police and fire departments.  Gary had a large increase in the number of one-on-one and group training sessions while Jacqueline posted her highest number of station visits in a quarter to date.

The second quarter also allowed Gary and Jacqueline to showcase their combined impact by collaborating on a number of people dealing with injuries in the city.  Typically someone will reach out to Jacqueline with an injury and after an evaluation and the rehabilitation process is started Jacqueline will link the person up with Gary to help with their progression back to full status.  With Jacqueline’s guidance on where they are in their return to work status Gary can then craft a personalized strength and conditioning plan to help minimize performance loss with the rest of the body along with helping to build strength on top of the function that Jacqueline has restored.  These are the best examples of the impact that a unified performance team can have within the city.

There were also a number of events that O2X were able to attend and support. April saw the Berkeley Fire Department’s First in Fire Camp that Jacqueline was able to help support.  This is a free camp for women to learn about a career in the fire service through hands-on training. Participants learned basic fire ground skills and Jacqueline was able to share information about the O2X program as well as injury prevention strategies for performing the physically demanding work of a firefighter.  

In the middle of May Gary and Jacqueline attended the Sacramento Police Academy Family Night which is where the newest Berkeley Police Department recruits were training.  This was a great event that allowed the recruits to meet Gary and Jacqueline and learn about the O2X Human Performance and how it can support them as they begin their careers with the city.  It was also an opportunity to meet other local agencies and tell them about the O2X program.

Finally, Gary and Jacqueline have been able to get out and about in the Bay area as word spreads about the O2X program here in Berkeley.  They were able to attend the Sacramento Police Academy Family Night where they met the newest Berkeley Police Department recruits to share information about the O2X program and how it can support these new officers as they start their Berkeley careers.  They were also able to assist with a multi-day workshop for Alameda County that was sponsored by FirstNet which provided a free workshop to help local first responders learn about injury reduction strategies, how to properly fuel for performance, the importance of proper sleep hygiene, and foundations of movement.  Berkeley Public Safety serves as a great example of departments and a city committed to supporting their first responders and Gary and Jacqueline were honored to be able to represent both O2X and Berkeley.