Do you believe it is important for UAMS Police officers to be in good physical shape?
Yes, I do, and for several reasons!
One) You might not be aware of it, but there is a long-overlooked law which mandates fitness for all law enforcement officers. Officers must train to achieve high levels of fitness or they can be subject to severe penalties. The law requires a total commitment from every street officer in the nation to achieve a level of physical fitness conducive to their survival, especially taking into consideration that they may be called upon to run in foot pursuits, overcome suspect resistance, fight to maintain control of their duty weapons, attempt physical rescues, engage in close-quarter combat, and provide effective backup for fellow officers. This law requires mandatory compliance and is uncompromising. It does not allow for appeals, invoking the phrase: “survival of the fittest”.
Two) If a police officer is struggling to overcome a suspect who is resisting arrest or is having to desperately fight for his or her life, that officer needs all the strength, endurance, mobility and flexibility they can muster. Officers can maintain and improve these skills by participating in physical fitness, or they can allow them to deteriorate by failing to keep up with their fitness training and tactical skills. It is important that officers remember that at this very moment all over the nation there are people—in and out of prison—training as hard as they can in fitness and tactics in order to kill officers. The officer should always be fit for duty.
Three) Police officers who don’t work out and watch what they eat risk obesity, which is at an all-time high in the United States and can lead to health issues such as heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, some cancers, gallbladder disease, gallstones, osteoarthritis, gout, breathing problems and sleep apnea or asthma.
Personally, I work out at the gym with friends and family which helps keep accountability to the routine each week as well as makes it fun or puts a competitive nature to the fitness side of things. I love to take my two kids Lilium who is 15 and Elijah who is 11 bike riding on the weekends at Two Rivers Park or play some basketball on our basketball court in the backyard. The Kiddos and I like to run a lot of fun runs such as Warrior Dash, Gauntlet, Color Run, Glow Run, Jingle Bell Run, or Dragon Boat Racing which I have done with the Silver Monkeys running group that the kiddos and I are a part of. We did also run the Country Run which the kiddos and I did with some of our Department Employees here from UAMS which just adds to our comradery while building our fitness up as well. I have ADHD so hyper is just a part of my energy side and why not put that energy to good use with finding fun ways to use fitness via be with family or friends and staying healthy all at the same time.
Physical fitness boosts energy levels and mental clarity.
Physical fitness promotes a professional law enforcement image.
Physical fitness enhances faster response times and suspect apprehension by improving officer involvement with the officers endurance, mobility, strength and flexibility.
Physical fitness strengthens the officer to preform maneuvers that protect both themselves and the citizens they serve.