O2X, a world leader in maximizing human performance based in Quincy, Mass., is “saving the lives of our members,” said Edward Kelly, the former president of the 12,000-member-strong Professional Firefighters of Massachusetts.
Kelly is now the general secretary treasurer of the International Association of Fire Fighters.
O2X has worked for more than a year with Boston firefighters, helping them combat the various health and wellness challenges that face all firefighters, including increased rates of cancer, cardiac disease and orthopedic injuries. Boston firefighters, for example, face 2½ times the rate of cancer as the average Bostonian. The O2X program also helps firefighters cope with the various mental health challenges that come with a high-stress job.
“I am convinced that the O2X Human Performance Program is transforming the Boston Fire Department into a much healthier, fitter and safer department,” said Dr. Michael G. Hamrock of Tufts University Medical Center. Dr. Hamrock is a former fire fighter and now an occupational physician for the Boston Fire Department.
On the heels of this success working with the BFD, O2X this week is rolling out its first regional human performance workshop for firefighters in 11 different communities on Boston’s South Shore. O2X then hosts a regional program for other Massachusetts firefighters in December and will begin working with Broward County, Florida fire fighters in 2017.
“O2X is not a wellness or a fitness program. It is a human performance program,” said O2X co-founder Adam La Reau, a former U.S. Navy SEAL and graduate of the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
“We provide a complete approach to performance built upon the five pillars of nutrition, sleep, stress management, resilience and physical conditioning that we summarize through our ‘Eat. Sweat. Thrive.’ methodology,” said La Reau.
Each O2X human performance workshop for firefighters and other first responders is a four-day program that begins with a morning workout led by a strength and conditioning expert, followed by a series of seminars, lectures and individual health assessments featuring national thought leaders in a variety of human performance disciplines. O2X follows up the workshops with an individualized online continuing education program for each participating fire fighter.
Among the experts from the O2X Team working this week with fire fighters south of Boston are strength and conditioning expert Matt Cady; Adrian Fitzgerald, a leading authority in injury prevention; runner and footwear expert Shane O’Hara, who analyzes each individual’s run technique and gait for maximum efficiency and performance; acclaimed yoga expert, author and speaker Rebecca Pacheco; Dr. Tracy Heller, a mental performance specialist; Maria Trozzi, professor of pediatrics at Boston University School of Medicine and national leader in mental health, bereavement and resilience who has worked on site at tragedies such as Columbine, Colo. and Newtown, Conn.; and Dr. Maria Urso, a U.S. Army veteran and marathon runner who will lead a full day of study on performance nutrition.
O2X, 1147 Hancock St., Suite 233, Quincy, Mass., 02169, 781-534-3660, www.o2x.com.