The Warrior Research Center (WRC) works to improve performance, resiliency, and health and wellness while providing leadership through research, education, training, and implementation of new knowledge in order to better serve Warriors, Veterans, tactical athletes, families, and the community. Research conducted at the WRC focuses primarily on innovations that improve readiness through performance optimization, injury prevention, and training, as well as improvement of equipment and vehicles, and the human-machine interface. WRC also acts as a testing lab for military gear and equipment, and to assess current training protocols.

The WRC and the Auburn Fire Department have collaborated on research projects over the last five years to address firefighter safety, heat and musculoskeletal injury prevention, and occupational performance. Currently, they are recruiting participants for two survey studies. The Alabama Fire College (AFC) is proud to endorse the efforts behind these studies and we are encouraging fire fighters in Alabama’s fire service and beyond to participate.

The target audience for both surveys is current career and volunteer firefighters in the United States. Collaboration between Auburn University, Auburn Fire Department, and AFC will allow for larger scale studies to be performed that will be equally applicable to firefighters across the country. This collaboration will also facilitate the transition from research to practice, allowing for laboratory controlled and field studies to be conducted that will be relevant to fire department practices.

SURVEY #1: Investigation of Firefighter Exercise and Physical Activity Practices:
This survey evaluates the exercise and physical activity patterns of current firefighters. The findings from this study will be used to develop programs to improve occupational readiness, physical fitness, and reduce injury in firefighters.

SURVEY #2: The Impact of COVID-19 on Firefighters’ Ability to Perform Job Duties:
This survey investigates if firefighters who were diagnosed with COVID-19 experienced physical performance challenges with their daily tasks after returning to work. Findings from this study will be used to evaluate the need for specific rehabilitation regimes or return-to-work guidelines for these firefighters.