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Campus Chronicles with Chris Forsman

Courtesy: Canisius College Athletics
Release: 09/29/2009
Junior Chris Forsman
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The Griffs are coming off a busy week. As mentioned in last week's edition of the chronicle, the hockey team had Army ROTC training led by members from the Canisius Golden Griffin Battalion.

Monday through Saturday was spent waking up at 6 a.m. to train with the ROTC members. We completed a number of activities that covered a wide range of skills, all meant to help in preparation for the upcoming season. Being part of the Armed Forces is just like being on any sports team, except being in the Army is like being on the ultimate team.

Sports teams participating in Army-based training is nothing new, professional sports teams do this all the time. For example, the Pittsburgh Penguins participated in a training session at West Point in 2007. Being in this highly-motivated environment helps teams build on the skills needed to be successful; communication, discipline, and teamwork, all of which were challenged during the week. Just like in the Army, if a team lacks these key components, they will not survive.

On day one and two, we were put through the basic Army PT (physical training) test, which consisted of push-ups, sit-ups, and a two mile run combined with other exercises in between to test our work ethic and teamwork.

On day three we were put through an hour-long exercise circuit, once again testing our motivation and drive. The goal of the exercise was to see how we would react as a team. Anyone can just go out and do push-ups, sit-ups and run on their own, but when you are with a team you have to do it together, making sure everyone completes the task no matter what.

On day four, it was a little lighter pace. With the emphasis on team, we were split up into three squads to compete against each other. The series of events were meant to see which team could work the best together, in order to beat the other teams. This is ultimately what competition comes down to - who has the better team and which team can find a way to win. Albeit this is not true all of the time, it is often what decides games.

Finally, on the last day of the training we played paintball, which was probably the most popular exercise we did. This culminating event tested all of the skills we built during the week. Running around in the bush tested teamwork, communication and discipline in a chaotic environment, much like a hockey game does at times.

Here we were in the bush, with paintball guns and we had certain missions we needed to accomplish. Besides a handful of guys, most of us were never in this sort of combat environment. It was completely new to most and this is why it was such a great test. Judging by the outcome of our so-called "missions," it was successful as we did everything well as a team and that was the main goal of the week. A special thanks to the members of the Golden Griffin Army ROTC Battalion, and until next time keep your stick on the ice.

Chris Forsman, #4

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