Jeff Martone coined the term Tactical Athlete in 2001 to help change the fitness paradigm of police officers and soldiers from bodybuilding or long distance running to that of a professional athlete. Most bodybuilders can’t move, punch, jump, run, or throw like athletes can and most endurance athletes are woefully lacking in total physical capacity.
Ideas have consequences. If you think of yourself as being a professional athlete then, chances are, you’re probably not training like one. I know I didn’t, until my orthopedic surgeon made that comparison crystal clear to me, after a job related ACL reconstruction, back in the late 90’s. Proverbs 23:7 states “For as he thinks within himself, so he is…”. This truth is confirmed by modern behavioral scientist, which claim:
“How you think, determines how you feel.
How you feel, determines how you behave (activity level and habits).
How you behave, affects your choices (i.e. strategy) and your performance (i.e. tactical skill).”
If you knew you were going to be in a fight for your life tomorrow, would it change the way your train today?
Good tactics depend upon sound technical skills. Technical competence is built through quality training and repetition. Proficiency in these skills enables us to move, shoot, and communicate with an effective combination of speed and accuracy. It is only by consistently improving the physical attributes of strength, stamina and flexibility that will enable you to take appropriate action, in any environment, at anytime.
The word “athlete” derived from a Greek word, which means, “to contend for a prize.” Athletes train for contests involving physical agility, stamina, or strength. An athlete trains on a regular basis for competition with one purpose in mind – to win. They know the rules, the duration and how to train to maximize their performance both in-season and out-of-season.
The Tactical Athlete must train for the unknown and the unknowable. He must have the ability to perform on demand. He doesn’t know when, where, how long or how many he may contend against. All he knows for sure is that second place will most likely result in serious bodily injury or death – his own. You can’t fake performance or endurance. There is no substitute for physical preparation. Your goal is not only to survive but also to thrive in the ever-changing, dynamic environment of the tactical arena. It’s about performance on demand. You must be “ready in season and out of season” because in our world, there is no off-season.