National Guard and the Air National Guard are in every zip code in America ... Looking toward the future, I will tell you it is critical we keep you engaged, we keep you in uniform, and we keep you bridging that gap between military service and American society.
- Secretary of the Army John McHugh, shares the military leadership's concern about the divide between society and the less-than-1-percent that serve in uniform, during the National Guard Joint Senior Leader Conference, Nov. 9, 2011, at the Gaylord National Hotel & Convention Center in Maryland.
McHugh says Guard remedy for military, civilian divide
I've had a challenging career and loved every minute of it, and I would do it all again. And it all stems from veterans. They were the ones that inspired me when I was a young man, and continue to do so to this day.
- Retd. Sgt. Maj. Ray Moran, a veteran of more than 60 years, at age 82, makes his mark on the military as the oldest and longest-serving recruiter
Veterans inspire longest-serving recruiter
Minimalist Running Shoes
What is it?
One of the biggest changes to hit the running world in the last few years has been the advent of the minimalist running shoe (MRS). After several years of seeing running shoe manufacturers put more cushioning into their shoes - from gel to air to springs - we are now seeing many of these same companies begin to manufacture the MRS which have little or no cushioning.
There are no exact specifications as to what makes a MRS, however, most MRS specifications include shoes that are lightweight, low to the ground and flexible. They have very little to no cushioning in the heels. Additionally, there is little or no slope from the heel to the toe of the shoe - called the heel-toe drop. That lack of cushioning and the low heel-toe drop encourages the runner to land on the front of the foot rather than the heel when running.
What has the Army done?
The Army recognizes that MRS are not for everyone and neither endorses nor opposes their use among its Soldiers. The Army has not identified any published research studies that examine injuries and performance by comparing traditional running shoe wear to MRS. Therefore, most claims of increased performance or reduced injuries with MRS are based on expectations due to the biomechanical effects of the MRS rather than scientific evidence. What's known is that changing from traditional running shoes to MRS requires a slow and deliberate training period. Foot and leg musculature strength is essential as is proper running form. The Army is currently working on a transition program for those Soldiers who desire to change from traditional running shoes to MRS.
What efforts does the Army have planned?
The Office of the Surgeon General (OTSG) is partnering with the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine (USAREIM), the Army Institute of Public Health (AIPH) and military experts in the field to determine the way ahead. Further research is required in order to know what impact MRS will have on injury surveillance and performance in Soldiers using these shoes. Watch for informational posters and flyers from OTSG in the future that will address transitioning tips, MRS Do's & Don'ts and tips on running in MRS.
Why is this important to the Army?
While the Army recognizes that many Soldiers are using or are considering switching to MRS, the health and readiness of our Soldiers is of utmost importance and we want to ensure that we maintain both.
U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine
External Links Disclaimer - The appearance of hyperlinks to external sites does not constitute endorsement by the Department of the U.S. Army of the linked web site or the information, products or services contained therein. For other than authorized activities such as military exchanges and Morale, Welfare and Recreation sites, the Department of the U.S. Army does not exercise any editorial control over the information you may find at these locations. Such links are provided consistent with the stated purpose of this DoD web site.