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 November 26, 2010


ACS to offer resiliency training to
Family members, Civilians

A top Army priority is to deliver a holistic fitness program for Soldiers, Family members, and Department of the Army Civilians to enhance performance and build resilience.

Fort McCoy will support that effort by offering its first Master Resiliency Trainers (MRT) course for Family members and Civilians at Fort McCoy Feb. 1-2, 2011 from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. each day at the Army Community Service (ACS) Center, 2111 South 8th Avenue.

Resiliency Core Competencies

Self-Awareness — Identify thoughts, emotions, and behaviors and patterns in thinking and behaviors.

Self-Regulation — Regulate impulses, emotions and behaviors to achieve goals.

Optimism — Hunting for what is good, remain realistic, maintain hope and have confidence in self and team.

Mental Agility — Think flexibly and accurately, take other perspectives.

Strengths of Character — Knowledge of top strengths and how to use them to overcome challenges and meet goals.

Connections—Strong relationships, positive and effective communication, empathy, a willingness to ask for help and help those you lead.

Lorie Retzlaff, the Fort McCoy ACS program manager and a certified MRT, said one component of this new initiative is the development of an Army resilience training program built on concepts taught as part of an existing resilience course developed at the University of Pennsylvania. The University of Pennsylvania’s resilience instruction materials and format have been modified and tailored for use in an Army population.

MRTs are at the core of the Army’s resilience training program. Enlisted, warrant officer, officer, and Civilian MRTs are being instructed to reach all levels of America’s Army.

In August at the University of Pennsylvania, ACS staff were instructed in the critical-thinking skills that are proven to increase the core competencies of resilience: self awareness, self-regulation, optimism, mental agility, strengths of character, and connection. Retzlaff attended this training.

The fact remains that though people try to prepare for all kinds of challenges, they never really know when adversity will strike, Retzlaff said.

And, as is so often the case, people do not always know what form that adversity will take. The charge for people is, therefore, to train their minds and bodies to expect challenging events to occur across their lives and then understand how to effectively face the event in order to continue to function in both their personal and professional lives.

The topics taught in Master Resilience Training will allow attendees to do just that, Retzlaff said.

MRT teaches people to see that: challenges are temporary, not permanent; challenges are local, not global; and challenges can be changed by your own effort — people aren’t helpless victims.

Retzlaff, as a certified MRT, is qualified to address those core competencies for Family members and civilians.

Retzlaff said she is excited to offer this training as it “teaches individuals skills to not only get through a challenging situation or event, but to bounce back while growing stronger in the process.”

Participants in the Fort McCoy community may register for the training by calling 608-388-3505.
Registration preference will be given to Family members, but is open to the entire Fort McCoy Community.

(Submitted by Army Community Service.)

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