Army can help you achieve wellness in new year

In this Fort Benning file photo, a visitor to the Army Wellness Center consults one of the AWC’s staff members on nutrition. (U.S. Army photo by Patrick Albright, Maneuver Center of Excellence Public Affairs)

FORT BENNING, Ga. (Dec. 27, 2017) – Before you make your New Year’s resolution, consider one of the resources you have on hand at Fort Benning.

The Army Wellness Center (AWC) program helps Soldiers and retirees, their families, and Army civilians build and sustain good health.

It empowers them to set their own health goals and achieve them. It addresses lifestyle change in areas that affect both short- and long-term health, engaging people in their “lifespace” – the places where they live, work, relax and rest.

AWCs and Army units:

  • AWCs improve unit readiness and support physical fitness standards by targeting the physical fitness and performance of Soldiers.
  • AWCs help avoid overtraining and related injuries. The right amount of time exercising yields optimal results.
  • AWCs reduce lost- and limited-duty time due to injury.

AWCs and medical providers:

  • AWCs provide a tool to address lifestyle behaviors holistically and over time;
  • Programs are evidence-based and leverage technology to help clients succeed.
  • AWCs allow for medical provider direction and oversight of patient progress through AHLTA documentation and PCMH integration.

AWCs and you:

  • You set the goals; the AWC staff puts you on the path to achieving them and walks the path with you.
  • Programs are individualized to address your current needs, motivation and confidence level.
  • Programs are free. From private sources this testing would cost about $3,000.

How the AWC Program works

The AWC Program is a U.S. Army Medical Command Program overseen by the Army Public Health Command.

The program is staffed by health educators who deliver primary prevention programs.

Primary prevention occurs before disease, injury or disability occurs. Referrals can be made to AWCs by medical providers or unit commanders. Self-referrals are always welcome and can be made by contacting AWCs directly.

Core programs offered at AWCs

The AWC approach to service is holistic. AWC staff members take into account all of an individual’s physical, psychological and social circumstances when providing services. A holistic approach is important because a person’s health cannot be fully addressed unless we consider the whole person.

  • The health assessment review analyzes an individual’s health status, risk for disease and ability to increase physical activity safely.
  • General wellness education facilitates classes on topics such as healthy sleep habits, resilience, healthy lifestyles, preventing chronic disease through healthy living habits and self-care.
  • Physical fitness utilizes state-of-the-art equipment to assess physical fitness level and designs individualized exercise prescription to achieve health/fitness goals.
  • Health nutrition education administers metabolic testing to precisely measure individual’s resting metabolic rate and provide tailored strategies for weight loss, gain or maintenance.
  • Stress management provides biofeedback training and education to improve an individual’s ability to respond effectively to prolonged stress, build resilience and develop positive coping strategies.
  • Tobacco education assesses an individual’s readiness to change, explores options for tobacco-free living and provides general tobacco education.

To learn more about the Army Wellness Center program, visit www.benning.army.mil/mcoe/CommunityHealthPromotion/AWCP.html.

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