DELRAY BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 13, 2017) – Physical health and wellness training is only a small part of recovery for warriors returning to civilian life. At a recent fitness workshop hosted by Team Red, White & Blue (Team RWB), warriors learned how to overcome their physical limitations through weight lifting, plyometrics, and stretching. And for one of the veterans served by Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP), the challenge of returning to civilian life included a social component, too.
“I was very nervous when I first arrived,” said U.S. Army veteran Tifani Wood. “I didn’t know anyone except the Wounded Warrior Project staff member who coordinated this event. I didn’t know what I was getting into.”
For many veterans, the experiences they had in the military were some of the best of their lives, filled with fellowship, meaning, and direction. But upon return to civilian life, the isolation they face can be one of the most significant struggles wounded warriors deal with. It can be difficult to know how to overcome that challenge. For Tifani, the solution was in the environment at the fitness event.
“As much I was hesitant to open up, I really appreciated that it was a small group,” Tifani said. “With only a few faces there, I wasn’t anxious and overwhelmed. We stayed busy, and the staff made sure I was comfortable and relaxed.”
WWP program events support the long-term recovery needs of warriors by reintroducing them and their families to the unique bonds experienced during military service. In a WWP survey of the injured warriors it serves, more than half of survey respondents (51.7 percent) talked with fellow veterans to address their mental health issues, and 29.6 percent expressed physical activity helps.
Tifani is studying exercise science, so she knew a lot about proper workout methods going into the event, but she still walked away with a new perspective on her training – both technically and relating to her life goals.
“They had us doing timed interval training, so it was intense and challenging,” Tifani said. “It was very rewarding to have support from the coaching staff, who gave us all feedback as we pushed ourselves. And modifications were available if the exercises were too difficult. Later in my life, I would love to own a facility or be a part of a team that helps veterans and their families cultivate an active lifestyle – in an accessible way.”
For years, WWP has partnered with organizations like Team RWB that share its mission to honor and empower Wounded Warriors. WWP is committed to putting injured veterans’ needs first and building stronger relationships with other VSOs, which will dramatically improve services for wounded warriors and their families.
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Contact: Mattison Brooks – Public Relations Specialist
About Wounded Warrior Project
Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) connects, serves, and empowers wounded warriors. Read more at https://newsroom.woundedwarriorproject.org.