COVID-19 delays didn’t deter the 40 participants from completing a 4-Day O2X workshop in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where they learned concrete, actionable ways to optimize individual performance, as well as create positive and effective cultural change within their departments. This event was hosted by the Grand Rapids Fire Department, which received a federal grant to hold the programming.
According to one participant, the training “was very different from any other training I’ve done. Was a breath of fresh air and very needed. Something I think could benefit first responders as part of their lifestyle.”
The workshops in Grand Rapids started in March, prior to the COVID shut downs, and have been brought back now that in-person training can be done. Over the course of four weeks (one in March and three in September), O2X specialists will put more than 100 members of the Grand Rapids Fire Department, as well as members from the surrounding communities, through the O2X program.
Everyone in attendance so far has agreed that O2X could make a positive difference in the overall health and wellness of their unit. “It was insightful to see how these [mental performance] strategies can help performance and the variety of ways in which they can help,” one participant said.
For this workshop, first responders and support staff came from all over Michigan to take part in the training. Participants included: Grand Rapids Fire, Grand Rapids Police, Department of Corrections Probations Officers, City of Wyoming Fire, Southfield Fire, and Detroit Fire.
As part of the programming, the participants were put through a body composition analysis and received access to the O2X Portal for ongoing training and access to the experts after their workshop.
O2X team members and specialists in every lane were present. Participants had access to specialists in several arenas, including: injury prevention, strength and conditioning, mental performance, resilience, sleep and fatigue management, and nutrition for tactical athletes.
The participants were grateful for the opportunity to have access to valuable resources and training. The programming and support offered by O2X is always important, but with so much happening in the world right now, it is especially critical. “Really appreciate the insight on how to change mindset. I find that it is becoming increasingly difficult to not focus on the negative as I get towards the end of my career which is frustrating in and of itself. I intend to work on these techniques to hopefully change the negatives into positives. Again, appreciate the insight,” one participant said.