Army 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)
The Department of Defense Injury Prevention and Performance Optimization Research Initiative began in 2006 with the US Army 101st Airborne (Air Assault) Division at Fort Campbell, KY. The NMRL has been able to identify sub-optimal characteristics by identifying injury patterns and conducting laboratory tests to measure musculoskeletal, physiological, and nutritional aspects of the soldiers. Using this information and considering the tactical demands of the soldiers the Eagle Tactical Athlete Program (ETAP). ETAP has since replaced the traditional physical training activities for the Division. Division-wide implementation of ETAP began in May 2009 utilizing the "Train the Trainer" strategy. The ETAP implementation utilizes an Instructor Certification School (ICS), which is a 4-day school designed to teach Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) how to implement ETAP with their respective units. A systematic approach has been implemented to monitor daily training exposure, track injuries, and monitor performance adaptations with the research objective to evaluate the effects of ETAP on reducing unintentional musculoskeletal injuries.
Continued research with the 101st Airborne (Air Assault) at Fort Campbell, KY will include further ETAP implementation and injury surveillance, monitoring longitudinal effects of ETAP, and redeployment testing. Future projects at Fort Campbell, KY will include a weight management and performance optimization intervention for the 101st Airborne (Air Assault). The Weight Management / Performance Optimization Intervention project will address the specific nutritional needs of the overweight 101st Soldier with a comprehensive weight management and performance optimization intervention. The intervention will include innovative feeding strategies that merge weight management techniques, including motivational interviewing/counseling, and nutrition and dietary supplement education for the Soldier and their family.