United States Army Special Operations Command

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At the request of the Command Surgeon from the United States Army Special Operations Command (USASOC), this research proposal supports development of USASOC's Tactical Human Optimization, Rapid Rehabilitation, and Reconditioning (THOR3) program to identify the priorities necessary for enhancement and change in the current physical training program. The Human Performance Research Laboratory was established at Fort Bragg, NC for this project in 2012. The overall objective of this research project is to scientifically develop an injury prevention and performance optimization program that is culturally specific and dynamically responsive to the unique tactical demands of the Special Forces soldier. This project will ultimately result in enhanced mission readiness and effectiveness, decreased time lost due to disability, personnel attrition, and financial burden associated with medical expenses and disability compensation. This research approach includes Special Forces-specific task and demand analyses to identify the operational and training-related tasks during which musculoskeletal injuries occur, laboratory tests designed to determine suboptimal parameters that increase the risk of training and tactical injuries while reducing the capacity for peak operating efficiency, and nutritional interventions to optimize physical readiness and wellness. The initiative with USASOC is funded by a $2.8 million grant from USAMRMC and TATRC. Funding for this project is provided by research grant USAAMRE/TATRC #W81XWH-11-2-0020. Opinions, interpretations, conclusions, and recommendations are those of the author and not necessarily endorsed by the US Army.