Mental Fitness & Physical Health

  • The laws of nature demand balance! In corrections outside interests and hobbies are vital to the health and wellbeing of an officer. It is critical to the physical and mental health of an officer that there are active interests in their lives. From coaching to woodworking, masonry or enjoying the outdoors these activities are important!
  • Much of the work in corrections is spent in a state of “arousal”. This has much hormonal impact on your brain and body. Prioritizing the hormonal balance of stress is vital to having a healthy career, home life and ultimately retirement.
  • Happy Hour is NOT a hobby! It is crucial that correctional professionals take time to engage in relaxing/restorative activity to counteract the internal stress responses triggered in the body during the work day.
  • The best thing an officer can do for their overall health is exercise! A workout is the most effective way to healthfully regulate the stress hormones produced in the specialized circumstances that officers are presented with.
  • While there isn’t necessarily a physical altercation in every shift worked there is always a need to be vigilant and ready to respond at any moment. This is chronic stress on the body and brain.
  • According to the American Psychological Association When the body is stressed, muscles tense up. Muscle tension is almost a reflex reaction to stress — the body’s way of guarding against injury and pain. With sudden onset stress, the muscles tense up all at once, and then release their tension when the stress passes. Chronic stress causes the muscles in the body to be in a more or less constant state of guardedness. When muscles are taut and tense for long periods of time, this may trigger other reactions of the body and even promote stress-related disorders. For example, both tension-type headache and migraine headache are associated with chronic muscle tension in the area of the shoulders, neck and head”.

For complete information on the impact of stress on the body check out the American Psychological Association – Stress Effects on the Body