Morale: Working The Weight


September 25, 2007: Some soldiers are using the 30 pound protective vest as a physical conditioning aid, both in the gym and outside. Today's combat soldiers and marines are, like professional athletes, very much into physical conditioning. A little extra speed and strength on the battlefield can save your life. This is especially true now that the protective vest, with all the attachments, weighs in at 30 pounds. Troops headed for the combat zone, wear the vest during all their training. But other have found that wearing the vest in the gym, or while running, helps as well. The more you move about with the vest on, the more you develop the muscles, and lung capacity, that support the weight.

After the first rotation of combat troops came back from Iraq and Afghanistan, some noticed that they were in pretty good physical shape. Those who were deep into physical conditioning quickly figured out that the heavy protective vest was having the same impact as training weights, that are worn to build up certain muscles. Even soldiers who don't particularly like running or doing calisthenics with the vest on, realize that this will make life easier for them when they get back to the combat zone.


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