Office of Undergraduate Research

Firefighter Health, Injury, and Performance - The Occupational Athlete

Firefighters are a unique occupational group due to the high physical and mental demands to successfully fulfill job performance responsibilities. The Fire Service Joint Labor Management Wellness-Fitness Initiative emphasizes a wellness approach to evaluation and development of programs resulting in fit, healthy, and capable firefighters. It has been suggested that in comparison to unfit firefighters, fit firefighters are likely to perform the job of a firefighter more safely and efficiently, resulting in decreased risk for injury to them and fellow firefighters. Recently, the literature has begun to utilize the term "occupational athlete" when referencing firefighters. However, current assessment practices are more related to fitness then athletic performance. This research opportunity is part of an on-going, long-term project with the Milwaukee Fire Department to examine measures of fitness, health, and performance in active duty firefighters, recruits, and cadets.

Tasks and responsibilities:

Primary responsibilities will include assistance with participant recruitment, data collection, and data entry. Additional responsibilities will include assistance with lab maintenance and review of the current literature. Students will several opportunities to participate in data collection at the Milwaukee Fire Academy. Students will be expected to be an active member of the Human Performance and Sport Physiology Lab and attend laboratory meetings generally held every other week.