What is the Impact of Load Carriage on Measures of Power & Agility in Tactical Occupations?

Research Paper Title

The Impact of Load Carriage on Measures of Power and Agility in Tactical Occupations: A Critical Review.

Background

The current literature suggests that load carriage can impact on a tactical officer’s mobility, and that survival in the field may rely on the officer’s mobility.

The ability for humans to generate power and agility is critical for performance of the high-intensity movements required in the field of duty.

The aims of this review were to critically examine the literature investigating the impacts of load carriage on measures of power and agility and to synthesise the findings.

Methods

The authors completed a search of the literature using key search terms in four databases.

After relevant studies were located using strict inclusion and exclusion criteria, the studies were critically appraised using the Downs and Black Checklist and relevant data were extracted and tabled.

Fourteen studies were deemed relevant for this review, ranging in percentage quality scores from 42.85% to 71.43%.

Results

Outcome measures used in these studies to indicate levels of power and agility included short-distance sprints, vertical jumps, and agility runs, among others.

Performance of both power and agility was shown to decrease when tactical load was added to the participants.

Conclusions

This suggests that the increase in weight carried by tactical officers may put this population at risk of injury or fatality in the line of duty.

Reference

Joseph, A., Wiley, A., Orr, R., Schram, B. & Dawes, J.J. (2018) The Impact of Load Carriage on Measures of Power and Agility in Tactical Occupations: A Critical Review. International Journal of Environmental Research and Health. 7;15(1), pii: E88. doi: 10.3390/ijerph15010088.

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