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important leadership training experiences that may be equally critical for future Rangers in combat settings. Perhaps a goal of limiting weight loss to not more than 10 % during the 64-day training period should be considered.

  1. Since measurements of abdominal girth were shown in the Ranger II study to correlate well with percent body fat in individuals, it is recommended that abdominal girth measurements be used as a standard tool by Ranger trainees within their own groups to monitor health risk due to rapid change in body composition.

  2. During cognitive testing in Ranger II it was apparent that trainees were aware of the decline in their performance. However, they may not have been fully cognizant of the degree of this decrement or its implications for performance in a combat setting. To enhance the self-awareness component of Ranger leadership training, the CMNR recommends that immediate and direct feedback on level of performance be given to trainees during the course of training, and that more extensive discussion of this aspect of function take place at the conclusion of training (structured debriefing). Further, because the range and severity of decrements have not been fully identified and characterized, it is recommended that assessment of cognitive and other psychological variables relevant to performance be formally incorporated into future Ranger training.

  3. The data collected on sleep, cognition, and nutrition during the Ranger studies should be used to develop recommendations that can be directly given to incoming Ranger trainees to help them minimize the stressors of Ranger Training and be more effective in their goal of gaining leadership qualifications. Trainees would thus begin training armed with strategies that they can employ to maximize their opportunities for learning including the knowledge beforehand of the potential impacts of food and sleep deprivation on their own performance.

AREAS FOR FUTURE RESEARCH

The areas for further research can be divided into three components:

  • general research issues,

  • questions that can be answered through further analyses of the existing data, and

  • questions that can be answered by additional studies.



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Committee on Military Nutrition Research: Activity Report important leadership training experiences that may be equally critical for future Rangers in combat settings. Perhaps a goal of limiting weight loss to not more than 10 % during the 64-day training period should be considered. Since measurements of abdominal girth were shown in the Ranger II study to correlate well with percent body fat in individuals, it is recommended that abdominal girth measurements be used as a standard tool by Ranger trainees within their own groups to monitor health risk due to rapid change in body composition. During cognitive testing in Ranger II it was apparent that trainees were aware of the decline in their performance. However, they may not have been fully cognizant of the degree of this decrement or its implications for performance in a combat setting. To enhance the self-awareness component of Ranger leadership training, the CMNR recommends that immediate and direct feedback on level of performance be given to trainees during the course of training, and that more extensive discussion of this aspect of function take place at the conclusion of training (structured debriefing). Further, because the range and severity of decrements have not been fully identified and characterized, it is recommended that assessment of cognitive and other psychological variables relevant to performance be formally incorporated into future Ranger training. The data collected on sleep, cognition, and nutrition during the Ranger studies should be used to develop recommendations that can be directly given to incoming Ranger trainees to help them minimize the stressors of Ranger Training and be more effective in their goal of gaining leadership qualifications. Trainees would thus begin training armed with strategies that they can employ to maximize their opportunities for learning including the knowledge beforehand of the potential impacts of food and sleep deprivation on their own performance. AREAS FOR FUTURE RESEARCH The areas for further research can be divided into three components: general research issues, questions that can be answered through further analyses of the existing data, and questions that can be answered by additional studies.