JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas -- The Air Force is continuing its rollout of the Alpha Warrior program with the launch of the 2018 Alpha Warrior Meet and Greet Tour.
It stops at Eglin July 30-31. Alpha Warrior, built around a unique apparatus, challenges Airmen as they tackle the various obstacles or stations.
“We launched the service-wide Alpha Warrior Program last year as a new, dynamic way for our Airmen to build on their Comprehensive Airman Fitness,” said Col. Donna Turner, Air Force Services Activity commander, “and we’re excited that more installations will have the equipment in 2018 and discover the benefits of this type of fitness regimen.”
The program is designed to enhance functional fitness training by incorporating the four pillars of Comprehensive Airmen Fitness -- physical, spiritual, mental and social – to help Airmen build and maintain resiliency at home station and while deployed.
“Functional fitness focuses on improving overall core stability and muscular development by incorporating exercises that replicate typical muscular-skeletal movements and contributes to daily functions rather than specific muscle groups,” said Jim Anderson, AFSVA Alpha Warrior program manager.
First Lt. Nicole Mitchell, currently stationed at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, was introduced to Alpha Warrior last year and walked away with a first place trophy at the service-wide 2017 Final Battle competition in San Antonio.
“I had never done this type of training before Alpha Warrior came to the bases,” Mitchell said. “It was really fun and is a great way to help people get into a different workout routine.”
The Alpha Warrior obstacles are demanding but attainable, Anderson said.
“They build physical strength, provide a sense of personal accomplishment, challenge Airmen to overcome stress, and promote individual and group fitness goals to achieve optimal performance,” he added.
Mitchell said the Alpha Warrior equipment may seem a little daunting for some but encouraged people to not “let your physical ability, strength or lack of physical ability sway you … it's a mindset and just like any other new activity or task, go after it full force … don’t let it psych you out.”
“It wasn’t smooth sailing for me the first time,” she added, “but I kept practicing.”
This year’s meet and greet tour, managed by the Air Force Services Activity, introduces the fitness initiative to Airmen at 27 Air Force installations around the world.
Tour stops are typically two days – day one is focused on setting up equipment and familiarization and day two features an installation competition.
Installations are receiving either a battle rig (a 27-foot competition rig) or battle station (a 12-foot by 12-foot training rig) based on the desires of local leadership.
In addition to individual fitness, Alpha Warrior offers Airmen a new way to hone their skills, build confidence and improve unit cohesion. “When Airmen are at their peak performance across the four pillars of Comprehensive Airmen Fitness, they are combat-ready and resilient. The lethality of our Air Force is improved,” Turner said.
In conjunction with the 2018 meet and greet tour, AFSVA is also conducting a newly developed fitness training course, specifically for the battle rig and battle station.
The course, conducted by Alpha Warrior coaches, will teach unit physical training leaders and fitness center staffs how to use Alpha Warrior equipment in concert with their routine squadron physical training programs.
The training is expected to launch next month and take place at 35 installations.
At the end of the meet and greet tour, the annual Air Force Final Battle will be held in November 2018 at the Alpha Warrior Proving Ground at Retama Park, Selma, Texas.
For more information on Alpha Warrior, visit www.myairforcelife.com.