Chapter 4 Total Force Fitness Throughout the Fleet Readiness Training Plan“So in this total fitness, total health, how do you get at theintegration of the spiritual, the mental, the social, the physical,etc,? What does it mean to us and what does it mean for families? Itis a readiness issue because, if you are not successful in that, youare not ready to carry out your mission individually, as a unit, etc.”Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, ADM Mike Mullen, December 9,20091. Purpose. Service members are the most valuable asset in themilitary for accomplishing the mission of defending our country. Abalance between Mission, Family, and Sailor is critical to overallreadiness. To attain this balance, it is insufficient to train onlythe uniformed force. NECC affirms its commitment to educate, inform,and train the family members who support, sustain, and motivate itsSailors as well. This chapter outlines two concepts critical tounderstanding how optimal family readiness is achieved – the FleetReadiness Training Plan (FRTP) and Total Force Fitness (TFF). The FRTPprovides the framework to understand activity within a command frominitial organization to post deployment and TFF provides 8 distinctperspectives to consider when addressing readiness of Sailors andtheir families.2. Execution. Engaging families as a part of the command is aconcept that requires thorough planning to ensure that their needs areaddressed in every phase of a command’s life cycle. Outside of pre-deployment briefs, welcome home celebrations or a “Family Day” picnicmost commands fail to develop the Military Family as an asset fortheir Sailors and command mission. By incorporating families into thefour phase of the FRTP (maintenance, basic, integrated, sustainment)COs will develop families under their command umbrella as they wouldany other asset – through classes, training events, and vigilantmaintenance.3. Fleet Readiness Training Plan (FRTP). The FRTP is the operationallifecycle of a command. The FRTP dictates the operational tempo of acommand and what Sailors devote their talents and resources to duringany specific period of time. The FRTP consists of a four phaseoperational cycle which includes Maintenance, Basic, Integrated, andSustainment. Since commands gain and lose personnel throughout thecalendar year, Sailors and families may join a command at any phase ofthe FRTP. For this reason the CPFRP must be robust and responsiveenough to address the unique needs of individuals and families thatmay temporarily be out of sync with the readiness of the command.
Integrated Readiness FRTP Template TIMELINE Active Component: 18-24 Months Reserve Component: 48 Months Integrated/ PHASES Maintenance Basic Sustain >> Deployment << Advanced Operational Personal Readiness Redployment Psy First Aid Leadership Transition INTEGRATED READINESS Ethics Command Family Event Operational Orientation Pre-deployment Fair Command Event Operational Family Readiness Family Event Family Event Networking Shipmate Return & Reunion4. Total Force Fitness (TFF). TFF is a model of eight humanconditions which must be considered and addressed throughout thephases of the FRTP. No condition is more important than any other andmost issues of family readiness will include aspects of more than onecondition simultaneously. An effective CFRT will consider ways thateach condition might impact family readiness when developing a planfor each FRTP phase. Throughout the entire FRTP Cycle Sailors andtheir families are faced with multiple challenges that could be“categorized” under one or many of the domains of the TFF model. TheTFF model is a planning tool that CFRT’s may use to assist itsdevelopment of a holistic, comprehensive, and effective approach toFamily Readiness.To support the mission of a command, the Department of Defense hasdeveloped a TFF model which applies to service members. NECC hasmodified the model to apply to family members. The key to TotalFitness is to provide Sailors, families, and CFRT’s with knowledge,skills and tools from which health, resilience and optimal performancecan emerge:
a. Physical Fitness. Physical Fitness is the ability tophysically accomplish all aspects of day-to-day requirements whileremaining healthy and uninjured. Physical fitness can be split intofour components: endurance, mobility, strength, and flexibility.Examples: developing a healthy lifestyle with a hectic schedule. b. Environmental Fitness. Environmental Fitness is the awarenessof and ability to adapt in any environment and withstand the multiplestressors of a military lifestyle.Examples: change of duty station and geographic location, cost ofliving. c. Medical Fitness. Medical Fitness is a condition of mental andphysical well-being as determined by medical standards.Example: Exceptional family member support. d. Spiritual Fitness. All individuals are spiritual beings.Spiritual fitness refers to the ability of individuals to connect andthe command’s ability to address the variety of needs within a diversecommunity.Example: Family access to spiritual programs.
e. Nutritional Fitness. Nutritional Fitness refers to theprovision and consumption of food in quantities, quality, andproportions to enable daily performance and to protect against diseaseor injury.Example: Establishing and maintaining healthy eating pattern. f. Psychological Fitness. Psychological fitness is theintegration and optimization of mental, emotional, and behavioralabilities and capacities to optimize performance and strengthen theresilience of Sailors and families.Example: Operational Stress Continuum Training. g. Behavioral Fitness. Behavioral health refers to therelationship between an individual’s behavior and their positive ornegative health outcome.Example: Children’s performance at school. h. Social Fitness. Social fitness is the establishment ofstable, cohesive families that are integrated into the largercommunity. Social cohesion is a strength multiplier.Example: Vibrant, active and collaborative FRG.5. TFF throughout the FRTP. The CFRT shall meet quarterly to discussthe command FRTP and consider the eight components of TFF and consciouslydecide how to integrate Family Readiness at each phase; keep in mind thatcommands may have multiple elements within the command on various phasesof the FRTP. In these instances, the CFRT will make every effort toinsure all Sailors and their families are informed and supportedappropriately. The following paragraphs explain the general actions of acommand during each FRTP phase and the offers a description ofconsiderations for a CFRT: a. FRTP Maintenance Phase. uring the Maintenance Phase the command(or detachment) refits from a previous deployment; organizes andidentifies gaps in critical skill that are required before the command iscompletely operationally ready. Commanding officers should use theMaintenance Phase to assess the CRFT’s readiness to support families andarrange training for new members and the CFRT as a whole. Availableresources are listed in Chapter 8. Some examples to consider in theintegration of TFF into the Maintenance phase of FRTP: Recruitment and Orientation training of Ombudsman and FRGL if one is not already appointed Publish CO’s Intent for CFRP Develop plan for periodic spouse/family orientation COMPASS (refer families to FFSC)
Selection Criteria and Planning Considerations for CFRT: (1) Family Readiness Officer (FRO). In addition to appointmentcriteria listed in Chapter Three, the FRO must be willing to communicatewith family members and official volunteers. They must be comfortablewith conveying the COs intent while being empathetic to the needs offamilies. The FRO will often be called upon to support family eventsafter the duty day concludes, and they may be thrust into a familydemographic different then their own. Some things to consider are: Experience in the Command Other Collateral Assignment Communication Skills with Civilian Personnel/Family Members Ability to empathize with Command Families and vet their concerns Willingness to “step up” in times of crisis or distress (2) Command Ombudsman: The Command Ombudsman must be chosen withgreat care. They must be willing to meet the needs of command familiesand explain/support the operational requirements of the command mission.An Ombudsman must be willing to listen to families without castingjudgment. Their conversations regarding requests for information shouldbe thorough as to not miss the root of an issue. An Ombudsman shoulddisplay a sense of “loyalty to the unit, the Commander, Sailors and theirFamilies”. The Command Ombudsman must also be willing to expressconcerns or complaints from family members to the CO. The Ombudsman isthe Commander’s Liaison and the families’ advocate. Some things toconsider are: Experience as a Navy/NECC Spouse/loved one Understanding the mission requirements and impact on command families Respect for all assigned personnel Communication skills Forward Leaning when caring for Command Families (3) Family Readiness Group Volunteers. Commands should foster asense of unity by encouraging family members and spouses to be involvedwith command functions and support organizations. The FRG is a separateentity from the command, but offers a unique opportunity forunderstanding and support. COs do not appoint FRG leaders. COs shouldmaintain oversight of FRG events and impact of the organization.Volunteers should be self-motivated, accepting of all loved ones, andwilling to work together with command families. The CO is encouraged todiscuss goals and mission statements with FRG Leaders or Board Members –as to promote a unified effort/understanding of Family Support. (4) Command Resource Center (CRC). A Command Resource Centerwill support both the CFRT and families within the command. Establish
a CRC to centralize information and resource material distribution.Update the information as often as possible and encourage Sailors andfamilies to submit information about resources they use. b. FRTP Basic Phase: During the Basic Phase commands emphasizedevelopment and mastery of individual skills required to complete amission. Unit self sufficiency and preparedness to integrate into amore, complex, challenging organization are key objectives. Focus shiftsfrom CFRT organization to outreach to Sailors and families in the BasicPhase. CFRTs work to establish a network that is capable of offeringsupport in any situation. The CFRTs are capable of developing the senseof community. CFRTs should take every effort to include family membersin organized command sponsored events. CFRTs should utilize commandMorale Welfare and Recreation committee, Family Readiness Group,Wardroom, Chiefs Mess, and First Class Petty Officer Association toencourage a partnership between command organizations and families. Someexamples to consider in the integration of TFF into the basic phase ofFRTP: Command Indoctrination – include the spouses Mentorship Programs (COMPASS and CORE) Families Overcoming Under Stress Workshop(FOCUS) Command sponsored social events Other additional information and resources Planning Considerations for CFRT: (1) Invite family members to Command morale events. Includethem in celebratory messages and ceremonies; educate family members onthe Navy Core Values. Encourage Sailors to talk about WHY they havechosen to take an Expeditionary path. It is much easier to respect adecision if you can understand the motivation behind it. Utilize MWR,FRG, Wardroom and Chiefs Mess to encourage a partnership betweenCommand organizations. Suggested events: MWR Events (burger burn, ultimate football, etc.) Family Day Command Olympics Retirements Promotions Awards Ceremonies (2) Mission Awareness. It is important to clearly communicatethe mission requirements and risks associated with the Commandmission. A family who is prepared mentally for extended absences dueto training or deployment can better prepare for the resulting stress.Knowledge can relieve some of this stress and anxiety. Commandsshould explain training requirements, Operational Tempo (OPTEMPO),living conditions, food and facilities available during deployment(OPSEC permitting). Families should also be made aware of normal
communication conditions during operations and following criticalincidents. Means of communication and availability should be sharedwith families to avoid high expectations being met with lowcapabilities. c. FRTP Integrated Phase: The command prepares for operationaltasking by developing advanced skills and exercising at operations/integration with other units. Pace and intensity of trainingincreases to challenge Sailors realistically. CFRTs should focus onusing the network established during the Basic Phase to ensure itsreliability. Command leadership should acknowledge the stress thatfamilies face as training demands increase. Addressing issues viaCFRT during this phase ensures a better capacity to handle mattersproperly during deployment. Commands should provide tools for Sailorsand their families to combat stress and the negative impact of highoptempo. Pre-deployment Briefing Quarterly spouse/family orientation Welcome briefs/Indoctrination Sailor and Family recall test Incorporate Family Preps into Disaster Preparedness Drills Pre-Deployment Briefs Family Resiliency Training Operational Stress Control Operational Readiness Testing Planning Considerations for CFRT Family “Fast Cruise”: (1) If a ship has been in port for an extended period, thecommanding officer may practice the underway routine while the ship isstill moored to the pier to ensure all hands know their roles. This eventis referred to as a ‘Fast Cruise’. The Intermediate Phase is a perfecttime for the CFRTs to make a dry run or ‘fast cruise’ for deployment.While the unit is away on exercises or training, the Ombudsman cancirculate information to the family, test the flow of communication, andensure the necessary resources for support are in place. This is also agood time to offer the Family Pre-deployment informational brief becauseit provides a long lead time for families to address issues rather thanwaiting until a few weeks before deployment.Test your network. It is far better to find faults in communication,support, or engagement during this stage than in the middle of a realdeployment while the unit is engaged in combat operations. Test yourFamily Readiness communications, network, and see what works and whatdoes not. Identify your strong members and who might need someadditional support during the deployment. See appendix (x) for achecklist of suggested items to accomplish during this phase.Command leadership should acknowledge the stress that Sailors andfamilies face when deploying and its impact. Commands should provide
tools for Sailors and their families to combat stress and the negativeimpact of deployments/high optempo. The readiness of a Sailor isimpacted by the readiness of their family. (2) Integrated Training Events. Offer Spouse/FamilyOrientation Quarterly - regardless of expected participation levels.The CFRT should communicate the basic mission requirements and risksassociated with the mission (OPSEC permitting) during pre-deploymentevents and welcome briefs. Sailors shall be encouraged to communicateclearly with their spouses/family regarding risks and associateddangers related to their mission/tasking. (3) The Reality of Risk. It may be difficult for a Sailor toanswer their family’s questions regarding the risks associated withtheir service. The CFRT should foster a climate of support andunderstanding where Sailors are provided training on how best tocommunicate with their spouses. Commands should pursue facilitatedtraining for its Sailors and their families to afford a structuredapproach for Family Member education.Family Care Plan. Tragically, there have been instances of a Sailorlosing their civilian spouse during deployment. The death of theprimary care giver to military children while the service member isdeployed or out of the area can lead to additional hardships forsurviving children/dependants. The CPFRP Family Care Plan is for allSailors and should be aggressively marketed. The Family Care Plan andits components are beneficial to all Sailors and should not be limitedto those with children. The purpose of this document is to provide achildcare plan should something happen to the Sailors civilian spouseduring deployment or geographic separation from the family. d. Sustainment Phase: Commands or detachments will normally deployduring the Sustainment Phase. Regardless of deployment status, theSustainment Phase is the longest and most challenging phase of the FRTP.Commands must maintain readiness throughout in order to respond tooperational tasking. If a command deploys during this phase the CFRT isdivided and most rely on the communication paths and relationships builtduring previous phases. Focus should be on emotional preparation for thetransition from home to deployment, deployment, and return. Someexamples to consider in the integration of TFF into the Sustainment phaseof FRTP: Establishes the family routine Last minute family issue and maintenance Mid-Deployment Morale Event Warrior Transition Program Welcome Home Event Families Overcoming Under Stress Workshop (FOCUS) Family Resiliency Training
Operational Stress Control Identifies the unique aspects of the post deployment period establishing the “new normal” Planning Considerations for CFRT: (1) Our families should be in a similar state of readiness. Itshould come as no surprise to any family member if the unit is called todeploy early. All wills, powers of attorney, and pay issues should beaddressed and support people clearly identified. The Sailor and theirfamily should be prepared for an expeditionary deployment at any giventime. The goal is not just to have the families prepared with documentsbut they should also be emotionally, psychologically and spirituallyprepared. (2) The Sustainment Phase does not end when the deployment does,but only after the unit officially enters into the Maintenance Phase andbegins the cycle all over again. While it is not likely, some units havereturned from deployment only to be tagged to redeploy (USS BATAAN –Haiti 2011) or redirect to another mission because of their state ofreadiness. This is an uncommon reality of the expeditionary service.This phase focuses the FRTP on emotionally preparing Sailor’s andfamilies for the transition through the deployment cycle (pre-deployment,departure, deployment, and reintegration).6. Goal of an integrated FRTP/CPFRP. Ultimately, the goal is to get theCFRTs to see the issues related to Family Readiness as part of theirCommon Operating Picture. We want operators committed to FamilyReadiness by being aware of the need to support family readiness events,appointing the right people to the right positions, providing familiesthe right information at the right time during the FRTP, and ensuringthat there is a mechanism to assess how well the command supports itsfamilies and improves those deliverables. The end vision: FamilyReadiness integrated into Command Readiness. A ready command includes aready family.