130. Operational Psych Research

Doc Bryan is a prior AF Psychologist. He currently is the Executive Director of National Center for Veteran's Studies at the Univ of Utah. He partnered with the AF Psychology Service to perform long term research on our Operators during OEF. The articles are posted on pjmed.com In this episode he discusses findings that have… Read more

Maximize Performance; Q&A with Team ST Coach Shawn

Sanderson Performance’s Coach Shawn; founder of Team ST, sits down with Specialtactics.com to talk workouts and maximizing performance. 1)    What were your primary goals when developing Team ST? When developing Team ST I first looked at what the requirements to graduate selection are and why so many applicants were unable to make it. I then compared that against my own experience and what I thought were the limiting factors that made selection more difficult. In the end it came to one of two things: 1- Mindset, most guys that didn’t make it decided, at some point, that this job wasn’t for them and they quit. The fact of the matter is, they were right, and there is nothing I can do or say to anyone that will change their perspective when they are confronted with that level of stress, other than take it in a little at a time and eventually you’ll be done. 2- Injury, those that did not quit, either washed out due to an acute injury, or developed a sustained injury from overtraining that lead to a failure to train (FTT). This is typically not due to a lack of fitness. Everyone that made it to this point successfully completed the PAST, some of them actually already met or exceeded grad standards before they even started. How is this possible? They trained to the test, in a low threat environment, and never built the foundation to survive the 10 weeks leading up to the test. Skipping crucial elements leads to failure. This is what drove my primary goals, which are: –  Attack limiting factors that cause trainees to fail –  Build a foundation in athleticism that will translate to efficient movement, both biomechanically and neurologically – Build resiliency and reduce risk of injury from the volume achieved during selection – Provide a “team like” setting for candidates to start holding each other and themselves accountable, because NO ONE graduates on their own.   2) The market is flooded with free and premiere workout programs.  How is Team ST programming unique and why have athletes chosen Team ST over the competition? At the end of the day, you get what you pay for; there are some decent free programs and some great premier programs. However, what I have found is that the majority of “pre-selection” programs are limited to a 6-12 week canned training plan and are composed of high volume work similar to what the candidate will see at selection. This sounds like it makes perfect sense; however, the issue arises when the athlete hits a plateau or sustains an overtraining injury and falls behind in their fitness levels. Even worse, if this is the only training they do prior to showing up at selection, they typically already have an ailment that is bothering them or they are to a point where 10 more weeks of high volume training will break them, literally. Additionally, there typically isn’t any kind of team atmosphere with these unless guys have a local network and they are able to run the same programs together. Team ST solves these problems by providing programming specifically designed to build a foundation that will aid them in withstanding the rigors of selection.  Additionally, the programming is constantly changing in order to prevent plateaus or regressions in performance. Finally, Team ST is truly a worldwide “team.” We have members from all over the world who are sharing their performance on the team leaderboard, discussing nutrition protocols and recovery techniques, and asking whatever questions they can think of regarding the team or training concepts. All of this is happening within the training app. The feedback that I have received so far, is that guys are feeling stronger, healthier and are having less complaints of chronic pain than when they were following other programs.   3) Who is Team ST designed for?  Is Team ST tailored for the athlete preparing for the PAST or for the athlete attempting to meet selection grad standards? Team ST is designed far anyone who wants to maximize there performance and increase there chances of surviving selection. We typically conduct the PAST  (or the operators PT test for phase 2 candidates) through the various training cycles. We won’t test the grad standards here as they aren’t applicable to building the athletes capabilities. If you have a strong foundation, you will keep up with the progression just fine throughout selection. Because of this, I can say with confidence, that an athlete who conducts consistent training with Team ST for at least 20-24 weeks will have a significant advantage physiologically than someone who simply builds up to a 6 mile run, 4K meter swim and high rep body weight calisthenics. As I stated earlier, I have seen guys enter with grad standard numbers and not graduate[…]

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107. Psych skills 2

In part 2 of this discussion regarding the value of psychological skills training, we continue the discussion of BTSF, Beat The Stress Fool.  We discuss the process and evidence supporting self Talk (instructional and motivational), visualization (See), and the use of a Focus word ( a go word, or trigger). Have a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah… Read more

106. Psychological Skills Training

In part 1 of psychological skills training we introduce the concept and discuss tactical breathing.  This article by med student and prior PJ Mike Lauria is in the Annals of Emergency Medicine Dec 2017. Vol 70 Issue 6, p 884. The research supporting this is presented and discussed in the context of special operations and… Read more

71. Shoulder injuries and management with Doc Paynter

Doc Paynter is an orthopedic surgeon and Flight Doc for the 212th RQS. He previously was a full time AF Orthopedic Surgeon at Elmendorf. In this first of a series of discussions, Doc Paynter discusses injuries of the shoulder and general management issues. Doc P has a unique perspective as both a FS and orthopedic… Read more

62. Human Performance discussion with KN Part 1

Doug Kechijian is a PJ who obtained a Masters Degree in Exercise Physiology and obtained a Doctorate in Physical Therapy, both from Columbia University. In part 1 of this talk Doug reviews why HPO programs are important, why sports medicine and performance training should be viewed as a continuum, and what are the limitations of… Read more