By Staff Sgt. Lewis HilburnMarch 26, 2013
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - The senior enlisted advisor to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine Sgt. Maj. Bryan Battaglia, visited Joint Base Lewis-McChord March 11-14 to talk to key leaders and service members about total force fitness, a priority of the chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff, and bridging the basics.
Total force fitness is a methodology for understanding assessing, and maintaining the fitness of the armed forces, according to chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Instruction 3405.01.
The total force fitness framework consists of eight distinct domains whose interrelated functionality is formed by five overarching tenets. The design of this framework is to keep service members resilient in the current environment of sustained deployment and combat operations Battaglia said.
The concept of this total force fitness is not just for the service members though.
During brief to approximately 700 JBLM service members Battaglia said, "Total fitness extends beyond the service member. Total fitness should strengthen resilience in families, communities, and organizations."
This reinforces what the instruction details in that a service member's family health plays a key role in sustained success.
According to Battaglia the best thing about total force fitness is that it has the latitude to fit into family plans and unit plans. It is an overarching concept and each service can tailor it fit their plan as long as it meets the DoD concept of total force fitness.
With operations in Afghanistan drawing to an end Battaglia feels there is a need to get back to the basics while in the garrison environment. He understands the basics from his generation are different from those of this generation, a generation that has been involved in combat for more than 12 years.
"We're concerned of how today's generation force will cope with this heavy garrison environment when it was so high tempo," he said during a brief to senior leaders.
He asked the question, "How do you bridge the basics across a multigenerational force?"
"Through innovation and ingenuity," Battaglia said.
To explain his answer he spoke of a scenario that happened on an Army installation, "During a promotion board for sergeant to staff sergeant, the sergeant walks up and the CSM (command sergeant major) is the senior with his senior enlisted and they're ready to grill this guy to see if he passes the sniff test for promotion. The CSM says, 'Let me see your unit leader's binder.' The sergeant had it, he passed it to the CSM, proud as anything, and beaming with 'inspect me because I'm ready' and it was an IPAD. There was a moment that the CSM had no idea how navigate or maneuver this thing but figured it out and all the information was there."
"It just shows you how to bridge the basics instead of going back to the basics," Battaglia commented.
He says it is a matter of reshaping the basics to narrow the gap between the generations using the technology of today and the innovative thought processes of the younger generation coupled with the basics of the older generation.