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Optimising Human Performance

How to unlock the full potential for those who work in high stress and high consequence environments.


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  • 9. The Green Room

    49:42
    EPISODE 9:  Maximizing Mental Fitness with Outdoor Wellbeing CoachingMartin and Jonpaul are joined by Emma Higginson-Smith and Martin Brennan from The Green Room, which provides outdoor well-being coaching, leadership, and organisational development to maximise mental fitness and prevent burnout. They discuss the importance of mental fitness and the role of wellbeing coaching and introduce the concept of the ‘green room’. Guest, Cast & CrewMartin Brennan was a police officer for 30 years and has represented UK Policing at the United Nations as an advisor to UN peacekeeping missions. He has led police teams during high-risk dynamic investigations. Today, he is an international expedition leader and an experienced outdoor wellbeing coach. Emma Higginson-Smith is a high-impact behaviour change coach and consultant. She is committed to personal and organisational wellbeing & is passionate about human performance, health, nutrition and the benefits of the outdoors.Hosted by Martin Jones & Jonpaul Nevin https://www.ophp.co.uk Edited by Bess ManleyProduced by Wavell Room https://wavellroom.com/ Resourceshttps://tgrcoaching.co.uk/emma@tgrcoaching.co.ukmartin@tgrcoaching.co.ukIf you enjoy this content, please like and subscribe so we can keep improving. Remember to visit Wavell Room for the latest articles, podcasts, and newsletters. Chapters02:00 The Importance of Coaching04:48 Inspiration Behind The Green Room13:50 Understanding Mental Fitness15:51 Challenges in Promoting Mental Fitness20:21 Societal Stress and Mental Health25:56 The Fascination with the Outdoors26:31 Rediscovering the Inner Child29:03 The Benefits of Nature on Mental Health31:59 Personalizing Your Green Space38:27 The Importance of Mental Fitness41:28 The Future of The Green Room46:08 Final Thoughts and Contact InformationUp NextNext week, Colin Espie, professor of sleep medicine at the University of Oxford, will join us. Colin is a world-leading expert on sleep and the treatment of sleep disorders, particularly the use of cognitive behavioural therapeutics to treat insomnia disorder.  

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  • 8. Feeding the Force - Tactical Nutrition

    47:24
    EPISODE 8:  Feeding the Force: A Tactical Dietitian’s Guide to Optimal Health & PerformanceIn this episode, Martin and Jonpaul talk to tactical dietician Dr. Will Conkright about the role of a dietitian in the military and the challenges he faces. We dive into the basics of optimal nutrition and examine how people working in high-stress, high-stakes environments can leverage good nutritional habits to positively influence physical and cognitive performance, rest, recovery and sleep. Guest, Cast & CrewDr Will Conkright is a registered dietitian and researcher with over 16 years of experience in clinical, academic and research settings. He primarily works with high-reliability populations, focusing on military operational stress, training and recovery. Hosted by Martin Jones & Jonpaul Nevin https://www.ophp.co.uk Edited by Bess ManleyProduced by Wavell Room https://wavellroom.com/ResourcesOperational Supplement Safety  https://www.opss.org/ Will’s email wrc16@pitt.edu If you enjoy this content, please like and subscribe so we can keep improving. Remember to visit Wavell Room for their latest articles, podcasts, and newsletters. Chapters00:42 Introducing Dr. Will Conkright01:35 Will's Background and Military Experience04:35 The Role of a Dietitian in the Military12:31 Fundamentals of Good Nutrition21:17 Challenges and Strategies in High-Stress Environments26:49 Holistic Health and Fitness in the U.S. Army30:06 Nutrition's Impact on Cognitive Performance and Sleep33:38 Supplements for Performance and Recovery40:15 Precision Performance Nutrition43:58 Future Trends in NutritionUp NextNext week, we’ll be joined by The Green Room, to talk about mental fitness and how wellbeing coaching, leadership and organizational development can help maintain and improve it.  
  • 7. Navigating Uncertainty

    57:49
    EPISODE 7:  Navigating Uncertainty - Insights from Mission Critical TeamsMartin and Jonpaul speak with Dr. Preston Cline, co-founder and principal of the Mission Critical Team Institute.  They discuss the characteristics of effective mission-critical teams, how to improve cohesion and facilitate within-career transitions, both into and out of these high-stress roles.Guest, Cast & CrewPreston is the co-founder and principal at the Mission Critical Team Institute, where he also serves as the director of research. He co-founded the Mission Critical Team Institute to support the instructor cadres of small teams that compromise indigenously trained and educated experts who perform in high-pressure environments where the consequences of failure can be catastrophic. He has supported military special operations, emergency medicine, tactical law enforcement, aerospace, and urban and wilderness firefighting organizations.Hosted by Martin Jones & Jonpaul Nevin https://www.ophp.co.uk Edited by Bess ManleyProduced by Wavell Room https://wavellroom.com/ResourcesMCTI Resources https://missioncti.com/resources/MCTI Teamcast https://teamcast.missioncti.com If you're enjoying this content, please like and subscribe so we can keep improving. And remember to visit Wavell Room for their latest articles, podcasts and newsletters. Chapters01:57 Preston Cline's Background and Career Journey04:16 Defining Mission Critical Teams09:44 Characteristics of Successful Teams13:17 The Importance of Hardship and Adversity15:43 The Mission Critical Team Institute18:49 Navigating Uncertainty in High-Stress Environments27:30 Building Cohesion in Tactical Swarms30:14 The Importance of After Action Reviews32:50 Challenges with the Post-COVID Generation34:53 The Role of Introversion and Extroversion36:07 Training Environment and White Space40:01 Data Discipline and Technology Addiction42:50 Onboarding New Team Members46:44 Career Transitions and Mental HealthUp NextNext week, we talk to tactical dietician Dr. Will Conkright about the role of a dietitian in the military. We will dive into the basics of optimal nutrition and examine how people working in high-stress, high-stakes environments can leverage good nutritional habits to positively influence physical and cognitive performance, rest, recovery, and sleep.
  • 6. Mental Toughness & Resilience

    39:58
    EPISODE 6:  Resilience and Mental ToughnessMartin Jones and Jonpaul are joined by human performance expert Professor Daniel Gucciardi to explore resilience as an emergent outcome in high-performance settings. Guest, Cast & CrewDaniel Gucciardi is a professor at Curtin University. He is a distinguished expert on stress, resilience and mental toughness and has published more than 150 peer-reviewed articles.  His research focuses on personal and contextual factors related to high performance, health behaviours and wellbeing in contexts such as sport, education and the workplace. Hosted by Martin Jones & Jonpaul Nevin https://www.ophp.co.uk Edited by Bess ManleyProduced by Wavell Room https://wavellroom.comResourceshttp://www.danielgucciardi.com.au/ https://staffportal.curtin.edu.au/staff/profile/view/daniel-gucciardi-678a620f/If you're enjoying this content, please like and subscribe so we can keep improving. And remember to visit WavellRoom.com for their latest articles, podcasts and newsletters. Chapters00:42 Guest Introduction: Professor Daniel Gucciardi03:42 Defining Resilience07:54 Exploring Mental Toughness13:45 Measuring Resilience24:35 Reflection Techniques30:50 Team Resilience33:12 Future Research and Final ThoughtsUp NextNext week…Dr. Preston Cline, co-founder of the Mission Critical Institute, joins us to discuss the characteristics of effective mission-critical teams, and how to improve cohesion & facilitate career transitions in high-stress roles. 
  • 5. Tactical Physical Training for Peak Performance

    47:35
    EPISODE 5: Optimising Tactical Physical Training for Peak PerformanceIn this episode, Martin & Jonpaul are joined by Professor Rob Orr, director of the Tactical Research Unit at Bond University. They discuss optimising training for physically demanding tasks as well as sedentary working, the relationship between physical fitness and cognitive performance, and the value of an individualised approach to training. Guest, Cast & CrewProfessor Rob Orr served in the Australian Army for over 20 years as an infantry soldier, physical training instructor, uniformed physiotherapist and human performance officer. In his role at the Tactical Research Unit at Bond University, Rob provides research, consultancy and educational services for law enforcement, military and firefighters across five continents. With more than 300 published research papers and technical reports on tactical populations, Rob focuses on providing pragmatic research evidence to the tactical community.Hosted by Martin Jones & Jonpaul Nevin https://www.ophp.co.uk Edited by Bess ManleyProduced by Wavell Room https://wavellroom.com/ Resourceshttps://tru.bond.edu.au tru@bond.edu.au (email)facebook.com/TacticalResearchUnitlinkedin.com/in/rob-orr-41075870If you enjoy this content, please like and subscribe so we can keep improving. Remember to visit Wavell Room for their latest articles, podcasts, and newsletters. Chapters00:42 Rob’s Background05:11 Defining the Tactical Athlete07:44 Optimising Load Carriage Performance09:54 Training Strategies for Tactical Personnel13:00 Challenges in Tactical Training Programs18:28 Physical and Cognitive Demands of Tactical Roles24:00 Principles of Effective Training25:34 Specificity and Home Field Advantage26:50 Aging and Fitness Decline29:26 Challenges of Modern Recruits35:33 Biological Differences in Fitness39:44 Body Armor and Equipment Design44:33 Final Thoughts and AdviceUp NextNext week, we welcome eminent scientist Professor Daniel Guicciardi. Dan is a distinguished expert on stress, resilience and mental toughness. In our discussion, we scrutinise resilience - the personal factors that aid it, how it applies to teams and the practical strategies that can help people improve it.
  • 4. The Perfection Trap

    55:02
    EPISODE 4:  The Perfection TrapThis week, Martin & Jonpaul are joined by Dr Thomas Curran, a world-leading expert on perfectionism. They break down perfectionism to understand what it really is and  challenge some of the myths that link perfectionism with high performance.  How we can prevent perfectionism from hindering our health, wellbeing, productivity and performance?Guest, Cast & CrewDr Thomas Curran is an Associate Professor at the London School of Economics. He's a world-leading expert on perfectionism whose work has been featured in Time magazine, the Harvard Business Review, New Scientist, and the Times of London, to mention just a few. In 2018, he gave a Tedmed talk that’s well worth a watch, entitled ‘Our Dangerous Obsession With Perfectionism is Getting Worse’, and just last year, he published his debut book, ‘The Perfection Trap’.  Hosted by Martin Jones & Jonpaul Nevin https://www.ophp.co.uk Edited by Bess ManleyProduced by Wavell Room https://wavellroom.com ResourcesFind Tom on Linkedin https://uk.linkedin.com/in/thom-curran ‘The Perfection Trap’ by Thomas Curran  https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/1847943861/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?ie=UTF8&qid=&sr= Tom’s TED talkhttps://www.ted.com/talks/thomas_curran_our_dangerous_obsession_with_perfectionism_is_getting_worse?language=en ‘Connected’ by John Spencer.If you're enjoying this content, please like and subscribe so we can keep improving. And remember to visit Wavell Room for their latest articles, podcasts and newsletters. Chapters 01:25 Introducing Tom04:07 Perfectionism and its Impact08:04 The Influence of Social Media and Secularization11:25 The Experience of Perfectionism12:48 Perfectionism and Mood Disorders20:48 Debunking the Notion of Healthy Perfectionism24:09 Perfectionism in Covert Environments26:00 Different Types of Perfectionism26:42 Other-Oriented Perfectionism33:25 Creating a Culture of Psychological Safety37:41 The STOP 5 Model for Reflection and Learning40:01 Perfectionists and Withholding Effort52:25 Reframing Perfectionism as a HindranceUp NextJoin us for an eye-opening discussion with Professor Rob Orr, director of the Tactical Research Unit at Bond University. We discuss the relationship between physical fitness and cognitive performance and uncover the value of an individualized approach to training.
  • 3. Leadership & Wellbeing; Lessons & Insights from a Policing Career

    35:01
    EPISODE 3Leadership and Wellbeing: Lessons and Insights from a Policing CareerIn this episode, Martin & Jonpaul are joined by Tim Jacques - former Deputy Assistant Commissioner at the UK’s Counterterrorism Policing HQ. They discuss health and wellbeing in high-stress positions and the role of senior leaders in optimising wellbeing and performance.Guest, Cast & CrewTim Jacques retired in February 2024 after 37 years in policing. He completed his service as a Deputy Assistant Commissioner in UK Counter Terrorism's Policing Headquarters based in New Scotland Yard.  Counter Terrorism Policing is an 8,000 people strong collaboration of UK Police Forces who work with the United Kingdom's Intelligence Agencies, His Majesty's Government, the Ministry of Defence and other partners to counter the threat to UK interests from all forms of terrorism. Tim had strategic responsibility for all counterterrorism policing Prevent and Pursue activities.  Hosted by Martin Jones & Jonpaul Nevin https://www.ophp.co.uk Edited by Bess ManleyProduced by Wavell Room https://wavellroom.com/ResourcesTim on Linkedin https://uk.linkedin.com/in/tim-jacques-50104423 The National Police Wellbeing Service https://www.oscarkilo.org.ukViktor Frankl ‘Man’s Search for Meaning’Martin Seligman ‘Flourish’Alan Cohen ‘Radical Contentment: The Power of Enough’If you enjoy this content, please like and subscribe so we can keep improving. Remember to visit wavell room for the latest articles, podcasts & newsletters. Chapters00:42 Introducing Tim Jacques: A Policing Career in Review01:09 The Importance of Well-being in High-Stress Roles05:09 Understanding Human Performance in Policing08:02 The Evolution of the Oscar Kilo Program18:35 Strategies for Personal Well-being and Performance29:58 Advice for Leaders on Fostering Wellbeing32:25 Final Thoughts and How to Connect with TimUp NextLook out for our next episode with Dr Thomas Curran, a world-leading expert on perfectionism. We challenge some of the myths that link perfectionism with high performance and discuss how we can prevent perfectionism from hindering our health, wellbeing, productivity and performance.