At the 10th Mountain Division (LI), everyone climbs together. The unbreakable warrior program, designed to mitigate and rehabilitate preventable injuries to Soldiers, is an embodiment of that ethos and has been adapted to the additional pressure from COVID-19.
“Once we identified the requirement to provide the Soldiers a source of cardiovascular conditioning over the possible longer duration of the COVID pandemic, Garrison, Family Morale Welfare and Recreation, and the division staff worked together to create a course of action,” said Lt. Col. Jonathan Lesher, the 10th Mountain Division Holistic Health and Fitness program director. “We had to rethink every facet of the program and reconfigure to optimize the fitness facility and ensure safe social distancing.”
In addition to reworking the program, Soldiers from each brigade were selected by their command teams to be instructors and implement the program.
“They are essentially the ones making the program happen,” said Sgt. 1st Class Greg Lamecker, a senior UBW program instructor for Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 10th Mountain Division. “They guide the participants through the program and relay participant's concerns to me so I can send it up as necessary.”
This allows for constant evaluation of Soldiers’ needs and adaptation of the program as the environment changes to continue expediting Soldiers recovery and keep them on the path to readiness, said Lesher.
While the COVID-adapted version UBW program is still new it is evident that participants have high hopes for the program.
“I want to be able to maintain my physical ability without injuring my leg anymore and learn new effective exercises,” said Spc. Brandon Winfield, an air defense battle management systems operator in HHBN, and participant in the UBW program. “The amount of support and people who want to help out is awesome and I get a great workout from it too.”