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Army Studying Trailblazing, ‘Hyperfit’ Women Soldiers

Army study
Army study
Washington Report

Medical researchers are taking a closer look at some of the Army’s trailblazing women as part of a voluntary study, according to the Associated Press.

The study will include women who have passed the nine-week Ranger course and those who have completed other special operations training. The goal, officials said, is to identify the attributes — mental physical or psychological — that have helped the women succeed in hopes of helping other women compete for the same jobs.

In the four years since combat jobs were opened to women, at least 30 women have earned the Army Ranger tab, two have graduated Marine infantry school and three have passed the assessment phase for Special Forces training.

Some of those same women will now travel to the Army Soldier Systems Center in Natick, Massachusetts. There, they will undergo a barrage of tests over three days to identify biological and psychological markers that help define them as hyperfit.

The tests will include a measure of how much oxygen their body uses along with others on their blood, calcium and iron levels and bone density, according to the report. Written tests and interviews will be used to evaluate mental toughness and psychological resilience.

The study was approved earlier this month, officials said. Participation is completely voluntary and more women may be added as others pass the Ranger course and other military schools that had previously been closed to women.