Blended training: Best of both worlds
September 13, 2011
By By Lori Egan
COLUMBUS, Ga. - The inaugural Maneuver Conference kicked off Tuesday morning; its theme 21st Century Maneuver Training.
Maj. Gen. Michael Tucker, commander of 2nd Infantry Division in Korea, spoke about how the division uses live, virtual, constructive and gaming training to replicate its real-world mission.
The division uses blended training, Tucker said, because commanders must manage training resources, they must aggressively pursue cost-effective training techniques to meet combat readiness requirements. Using LVC-G, the division does this.
Every unit needs its own DA 350-1, Army Training and Leader Development, the general said. The division adapted DA 350-1 to meet its core competencies -- mission command, combined arms maneuver and precision gunnery.
Using staff rides, readiness exercises and technology, the 2nd Infantry Division maintains its mission readiness, Tucker said. Examples included Heartbreak Ridge and gunnery ranges -- and the speed armor companies can accomplish the Table 8 range using a digital multipurpose range complex for gunnery.
Another high-yield, low-cost training method is the staff ride -- professional development where Soldiers learn about the Army and unit by visiting historic battlefields. Staff rides were lost because of the optempo, he said, but 2ID uses it to teach unit legacy.
Readiness exercises are another low-cost, high pay-off training aid, Tucker said the division uses to maintain the edge.
It's imperative to train on the terrain you fight on, Tucker said, and to leverage blended training to maintain the edge.