Sunday, November 16, 2014

PT and Leadership

Runway "Fun Run" in Battle Rattle at Kirkuk Regional Air Base, proof that if you are deployed
long enough something like this seems like a good idea :-)

On Nov. 7, Wright-Patterson Air Force base posted a commentary from 88th Communications Group commander Col. Donald Grannan entitled, "How did we lose this young Airman?" He described a number of ways that leadership failed to take care of an otherwise stellar Airman, and leadership that only paid attention when this Airman failed a PT test.  The story was picked up by the Air Force times and has gathered more momentum.  I think Col Grannan makes an excellent point, "Today, more than ever, as our ranks continue to decline, we must retain the best and most highly motivated Airmen. To do that, we have to lead them, be in the fight with them and focus on what's truly important and not become hyper-focused on marginal or anecdotal issues."  

So how to do I feel about the Air Force PT program?  On the one hand, early on during the renewed focus on PT, I liked seeing the crowds at the gym, and the squadrons running together.  But that enthusiasm soon faded, as leaders and commanders focused on other things.   

What we want (my opinion) is focused and motivated Airman, and having a fit population reduces overall stress, susceptibility to illness, and increases resilience.  But I am not sure if that is what the AF PT program is measuring.  Your thoughts? 

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