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Stretch Before Training…Are You Kidding?

Let me first start this post out with a question…Have you ever stretched before a fire department training as a group?  Prior to this past Saturday, my answer would have been, NO.

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We just got done setting up for a couple hour forcible entry training with the Jerusalem Twp. Fire Department when one of the Captains came up to me and asked if we could stretch the crew out before starting.  In my mind I was a bit confused at first as probably easily noticed on my face, however, I said sure let’s make it happen.  Lt. Frank Villarreal quickly volunteered to lead the group through a few minutes of stretching which included; rotating both arms forward and back, bending at the waist and touching your toes, rotating side to side, and a sprinters starting stance for the calfs.  

On the drive home, we chatted about the pre-training stretching and realized this was a great idea.  We are so used to going from 0 to 60 when the tone drops that we do the same when training.  I have no evidence that the stretching prevented any strains or sprains on a cool fall Ohio morning, but I would like to think it might have.  Kudos to the Jerusalem crew for thinking about one simple way to reduce firefighter injury.

As far as the training, the prop continues to provide a repetitive means to build forcible entry muscle memory.  With a few new recruits in attendance, we had the chance to go over the hand tools, techniques (GAP – SET – FORCE), and some basic saw operations.

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Chris Piepenburg

    Our department has been doing this regularly before trainings for the past couple of years. There has been a decrease in the number of training related injuries and I believe that stretching out is the biggest reason. This is one area of our job that we have direct control over and many do not use it to their advantage. If we plan on staying in this job for a while, we need to keep ourselves in the best shape possible.

  • http://www.firstduetackle.com firstduetackle

    Hey Chris,
    Do you have a set warm-up that your guys do?