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Air Force Alpha Warriors prepare for ‘Final Battle’

By Steve Warns | AFIMSC Public Affairs | Oct. 20, 2017

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO, Texas —

A celebration of fitness and tradition will be on display during the first Air Force Alpha Warrior Final Battle Nov. 11 in San Antonio.

Fifty athletes from U.S. Air Force installations worldwide will compete over a grueling obstacle course at Retama Park Alpha Warrior Proving Ground.

Maj. Gen. Brad Spacy, Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center commander, will deliver opening remarks to commemorate Veterans Day; the Air Force Band of the West and the Joint Base San Antonio Color Guard will present the colors; and there will be a swearing-in of new Air Force recruits.

The event is free to those with a Department of Defense ID.

“It’s going to be a great show,” said Jim Anderson, Air Force Services Activity (AFSVA) business and recreation branch chief. “Our Air Force athletes are going to show the benefits of working on the battle rigs and battle stations. The event allows you to get behind competitors that you resonate with and cheer for them to do their best.”

An interesting aspect of Alpha Warrior is it allows spectators to follow athletes as they complete each obstacle, said Dan Devine, Alpha Warrior chief operating officer.

“Our course is the only one in the United States that exists where family members and supporters actually walk with the competitors and cheer them on,” Devine said.

Fifteen regional competitions started in September, with the Air Force top male and female qualifiers from each region advancing. Ten male and 10 female competitors with the fastest times across the Air Force will also join the 30 regional champions to compete on Alpha Warrior’s 32-obstacle proving rig, Alcatraz.

AFSVA teamed with obstacle race specialists Alpha Warrior last year. The partnership demonstrates AFSVA’s commitment to building ready and resilient Airmen at home and in a deployed environment by strengthening the four pillars of Comprehensive Airman Fitness – physical, mental, social and spiritual. The activity’s Recharge for Resiliency program funds Air Force Alpha Warrior program.

Over the last seven months, AFSVA and Alpha Warrior delivered state-of-the-art fitness apparatus, similar to those seen on television’s American Ninja Warrior, to 41 installations. Eighteen battle rigs and 23 stations were rolled out to 32 stateside and nine overseas installations from April to October. Other Air Force installations are expected to receive equipment in fiscal year 2018, Anderson said.

During local and regional competitions, Airmen conquered obstacles such as the “Broken Bars” where competitors traverse across the Battle Rig using a series of monkey bars placed in different angles, and the “Devil Steps,” where competitors “climbed” steps with their hands.

“The daily and sustained use of this equipment sharpens our Airmen’s abilities,” Anderson said. “Maintaining that functional fitness is important because it enables them to face physical and mental challenges.”

David Nolan, Alpha Warrior chief executive officer, said Alpha Warrior is a unique way to maintain that fitness.

“What’s interesting about Alpha Warrior is it brings a fun value to working out,” Nolan said. “It’s a fun way of constantly moving around and augmenting your training.”

And the Airmen will show off their long hours of training during the Final Battle.

For more information on Alpha Warrior, visit www.myairforcelife.com.