The Stronghold Transition Program, an initiative by the Best Defense Foundation, unites special operations veterans and former NFL players in a retreat setting to address their transition experiences after their military or sports careers. The event took place in Utah and provided participants an opportunity to bond, share their struggles, and gain insights from various experts. Activities ranged from hiking, sharing memories of significant events such as 9/11, to discussing challenges faced in their respective fields.
- Stronghold Program’s Objective: Initiated by the Best Defense Foundation, the program aims to help special operations veterans and former NFL players navigate the transition from their high-intensity careers.
- Activities and Environment: The program, held in a massive log cabin in Bruin Point, Utah, offered participants various activities including hiking, shooting, and ATV rides. The setting allowed participants to bond, especially during fireside chats where they could share their experiences and feelings.
- Shared Experiences: Both special operations veterans and NFL players found parallels in their respective careers, like dealing with high divorce rates or feeling isolated after leaving their teams. This common ground fostered deeper understanding and support among participants.
- Expert Consultations: Throughout the program, participants had access to doctors specializing in neurophysiology, naturopathic medicine, and psychology. These experts addressed prevalent issues in both communities, such as traumatic brain injuries and mental health.
- Program’s Impact: Participants, including former Navy SEAL Alex Buggy, emphasized the value of the program, noting how it facilitated understanding and provided tools for navigating post-career challenges.