25th CAB implements overhauled physical readiness doctrine

| March 24, 2011 | 0 Comments
Soldiers of 2nd Sqdn., 6th Cav. Regt., 25th CAB, 25th ID, conduct the “v-up,” one of several conditioning drills described in TRADOC’s overhauled PRT doctrine, during PT, March 3.

Soldiers of 2nd Sqdn., 6th Cav. Regt., 25th CAB, 25th ID, conduct the “v-up,” one of several conditioning drills described in TRADOC’s overhauled PRT doctrine, during PT, March 3.

Story and Photo by
Staff Sgt. Mike Alberts
25th Combat Aviation Brigade Public Affairs, 25th Infantry Division

WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD — For decades, Army leaders have employed the mantra “train the way you fight — fight the way you train” in preparing Soldiers for war.

Recently, U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, or TRADOC, formally endorsed this training principle with a revised combat-focused physical training doctrine.

The overhauled Physical Readiness Training, or PRT, doctrine, is the first comprehensive change to the Army’s PT program since 1992, and Soldiers in the 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, are implementing the changes during daily PT.

The new PRT is a change for the better, according to 1st Lt. Austin Baker, executive officer, Troop E, 2nd Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment, 25th CAB.

“The new (system) introduces many new elements to include things like combat motions,” said Baker. “For instance, exercises that rotate your torso or replicate the need to quickly get off the ground are in the new PRT — the concept being that, on deployment, we will be exerting ourselves in ways that we have been conditioned.”

Training Circular 3-22.20, Army PRT, replaces Field Manual 21-20 and is part of TRADOC’s multiphase effort to use lessons learned from eight years of war.

Army leaders recognized that the effectiveness of Soldiers depends largely on their physical conditioning, and the new PRT is designed to mimic the realities of modern combat.

The PRT program has a systematic approach to training, consisting of ordered and comprehensive facts and principles and methods for training Soldiers and units for full-spectrum operations.

It provides a balanced training program that prepares Soldiers for successful task performances and other training conducted during the duty day. PRT also weaves injury control into the training fabric and recommends exercise intensity, volume, specificity and recovery within its progressive training schedules.

“Physical training is a very high priority,” Baker said. “We are deploying, and our Soldiers need to be combat fit, not only to do their jobs, but also to prevent injuries.

“Our Soldiers understand that PRT has a direct effect on them being mission-capable,” he said. “We must be able to do our job when it matters, and PRT (has) a direct impact on our mission capability.”

Among other significant changes, static stretching has been replaced with preparation drills like “the bend-and-reach,” the “rower” and the “windmill,” while simple sit-ups and push-ups — once a cornerstone of muscle strength and endurance training — have been replaced by new conditioning, climbing and strength-training drills like “side-to-side” knee lifts, “half-jacks” and the “supine chest press.”

“PRT is better than our old system in a lot of ways,” said Staff Sgt. Mario Thompson, utility equipment repairer, Troop E, 2nd Sqdn., 6th Cav. Regt., 25th CAB, and one of the PT leaders. “It demands a lot more discipline from Soldiers, and I can already tell that it is cutting down on injuries because we are (in better shape).

“Change is inevitable,” he said. “As the Army adapts, (Soldiers must) adapt with it, and that includes the physical demands of deployment.”

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Category: Health, News, Training

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