Obesity is rampant across the entirety of the US population. Epidemic is one word often used to describe the increasing weight that is creeping in on more than half of our citizens. For as sexy as they can look in those sailor suits, and physically demanding their jobs can be, even the members of the US Navy aren’t immune. The National Institutes of Health reported in November that 15.1% of male US Navy personnel are obese. However, for the confined space they often live in on submarines, the obesity rate “remains below U.S. nonmilitary comparison data.”
Posted on the Navy Times today, the problem is something that they’re asking for crowd-sourced support in alleviating, even if that means from civilians. The publication posted that, “A recent audit of the Navy’s fitness program revealed that many commands do not take fitness seriously, and that there’s too little accountability at the top.” In a business where fitness is everything, much like law enforcement or firefighters, the physical fitness should be a priority to everyone.
Navy Times is asking people to email their thoughts on both personal experiences regarding fitness in the Navy (for instance, “are you allowed time to work out?”) and how to improve the fitness of the Navy. While they’re likely looking for answers primarily from their own men and women, they’ll no doubt hear from anyone who stumbles across the article who want to share their two cents. Like us!
We’ve got ten tips for the Navy to improve the fitness of its personnel. When people are fitter and healthier, and encouraged to be so, they think clearer, have fewer days off work, are more productive, not to mention generally have better overall morale. We’re sure all of this would be appreciated by everyone in the Navy, from the top down.
Be Accountable. Enact a buddy system where each person is accountable to another for their workouts, diet habits, and even other health changes like smoking. This shouldn’t be a commanding officer, but a peer, that way you eliminate any fear. The relationship should be supportive and mutually beneficial.
Stand Up. Get rid of the space-eating standard office desks and install standing desks. This will get your personnel up out of their chairs and on their feet, which promotes more movement, better posture, and overall better fitness.
Promote Personal Training. Certifications, that is. The NESTA personal training certification is now covered under the GI Bill tuition allowances. It can help individuals not only prepare for a career after the Navy, but help them keep themselves and their peers in shape during.
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