Firefighters did something a little out of the norm recently.
In March, Gibbons Fire Rescue held their first ever Yoga For First Responders (YFFR) session to help improve the health and well-being of its members.
Over 20 people from Gibbons Fire Rescue, with guests from the Bon Accord Fire Department as well as town councillor and former firefighter Jay Millante, took part in the session hosted by YFFR instructor Janine Mills.
"The need is clear. In one segment, emergency personnel may witness more trauma, loss, death and destruction than the average citizen will see in a lifetime. First responders have high rates of stress-based physical health problems and sleep disorders. In addition, numbers are rising for post-traumatic stress among all emergency personnel," said Mills.
Last year, Gibbons Fire Rescue responded to over 200 calls for service.
"For the type of responsibilities our firefighters go through, part of the relaxation and exercise that comes with yoga allows the firefighters to feel their wellness," commented Millante. "It definitely had that feeling of calmness in the room and that's something we don't usually have as firefighters."
The end goal of YFFR is to help members relax, reset and be ready to go home to their friends and families.
Millante added that they may look to bring back yoga to the department in the future.