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About HPRC

Discover more about the Human Performance Resource Center

About Us

What is HPRC? What is HPO?

A downloadable PDF of this page is also available.

What is HPRC?

The Human Performance Resource Center (HPRC) is an online, one-stop source of evidence-based information and key resources to help Warfighters and their families achieve total fitness and, ultimately, human performance optimization (HPO).

Optimal performance is more than just being physically active and eating well; it’s a merger of psychological, social, familial, behavioral, nutritional, physical, and environmental fitness—or Total Force Fitness. That’s where the Human Performance Resource Center comes in.

HPRC is the educational arm of the Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP) at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS). HPRC can help you on your quest for total fitness and performance optimization.

HPRC translates general and cutting-edge information and collects resources, strategies, tools, and apps/videos for the following domains:

Family & Relationships includes topics such as family relationships and resilience, deployment phases, and family fitness, geared towards the specific needs of military families.

Physical Fitness covers topics such as physical training and exercise, injury prevention, weight management, fitness tools, and gender-specific resources.

Dietary Supplements will help you learn about dietary supplements and how to choose them wisely, with a special section: Operation Supplement Safety.

Nutrition has topics such as nutrition basics, alerts, resources, interactive tools, and “Fighting Weight Strategies,” as well as details about combat rations.

Mind Body addresses subjects such as mental focus/toughness, resilience, relaxation, stress management, getting the best sleep, and alcohol, tobacco, and drugs.

Environment contains information that will help you perform optimally in extreme conditions of heat, altitude, aerospace, water, and more.

Total Force Fitness highlights brings together all the above domains with information and resources on total fitness to help Warfighters develop resilience and optimize performance. TFF includes integrative performance enhancement programs and practices, plus detailed strategies for pain management.

What does this mean for you? You can go to any HPRC domain and find pertinent information—anything from short “Bottom Line Up Front” (BLUF) articles to postcards, information sheets, and longer articles that focus on specific topics. Each domain has unique information related to its subject area, with many resources related specifically to the military.

And if you can’t find an answer to your question on the website, submit it to HPRC via our “Ask the Expert” feature, and we will do our best to answer it for you.

What is human performance optimization?

 “Human performance optimization”—HPO—refers to the process of enabling each person to reach his or her optimal level of performance, become part of a successful team, and accomplish the team’s mission. HPO as presented by HPRC enables warriors to function at an optimal level of well-being and resilience to face challenges with minimal risk and stress through the use of the Total Force Fitness model. The diagram below illustrates this relationship.










DOD Mandate for the HPRC: The Human Performance Resource Center will function to:

  • Translate and disseminate timely, accurate, scientifically based HPO information to commanders, warfighters, medical personnel, and researchers.
  • Facilitate communication and collaboration for all Human Performance Optimization (HPO) communities of interest.

DoD-Established HPRC Focus Areas:
The HPRC online content is mapped against the following focus areas outlined in the 2009 HPO Conops. Any information request that cannot be mapped directly against the focus areas requires approval by the HPRC Director or Senior Scientist/Educator before any resources are allocated toward it.

  • Physical resilience attained through physical training, physical health, and other adaptation interventions
  • Preventive medicine measures, including immunizations and drug prophylaxis, dental health, occupational and environmental health
  • Nutrition and dietary supplements
  • Performance assessment
  • Rapid recovery and return to optimal performance
  • Health promotion (alcohol abuse, tobacco use, stress management, relaxation, weight control, etc.)
  • Psychological resilience attained through cognitive training, behavioral health, and other adaptive interventions
  • Ability to function in environmental extremes, including hypo/hyperbaric extremes, temperature and humidity extremes, high/low G’s
  • Medications for performance enhancement
  • Management of sleep, fatigue, alertness
  • Biomarkers of exposure and effect
  • Human Systems Integration as it relates to the health sciences


Key HPO Definitions:

  • Human Performance Optimization: The process of applying knowledge, skills, and emerging technologies to improve and preserve the capabilities of military members, families and organizations to execute essential tasks.
  • Resilience: The resources to withstand, recover, and/or grow in the face of stressors and changing demands.
  • Total Fitness: A state in which the individual, family, and organization can sustain optimal well-being and performance.
  • Health: A state of complete physical, mental, social, and spiritual well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.


Patricia Deuster, PhD, MPH, CNS
Dr. Patricia Deuster, PhD, MPH, CNS, is a Professor and Director of the Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP) in the Department of Military and Emergency Medicine, and for the Human Performance Resource Center (HPRC), at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD. She was the author of the first U.S. Navy SEAL Nutrition Guide sponsored by U.S. Special Operations Command and, because of its success, was commissioned to update the nutrition guide for the United States Special Operations Commands (USSOCOM).

Dr. Deuster, a Certified Nutrition Specialist, has conducted research in the area of sports and warrior nutrition for over 25 years and has published well over 100 peer-reviewed papers relating to stress, nutrition, and physical performance in the military. She has been a tennis professional, nationally ranked marathoner, qualifier for the First Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials, triathlete, skydiver with over 100 jumps, and world-wide scuba diver. In addition, she is an invited speaker throughout the country on sports nutrition and performance.

Meet Our Team

Our team draws on the experience of professionals from a variety of areas to bring together, filter and publish the best and most recent information on human optimization.


Sheryl Hoehner, MS, RDN, LDN
Sheryl Cottrell Hoehner is the nutrition content lead for HPRC. Sheryl received her Bachelor’s degree in Home Economics and Business from Adrian College, MI, and her Masters of Science in Food, Nutrition, and Institutional Administration from the University of Maryland before conducting nutrition research at USDA’s Human Nutrition Research Laboratories in Beltsville, MD. Sheryl brings a variety of experiences to HPRC: clinical pediatric dietetics at Johns Hopkins Hospital, dialysis center renal dietetics, and clinical dietetics for the U.S. Army at Walter Reed Medical Center and other army facilities. She has taught nutrition seminars/classes at community colleges and schools across Virginia and served as chief dietitian at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. She also maintains her own dietary consulting business. Her latest project involved teaching better shopping and eating behaviors to customers at inner-city Baltimore stores, which won the owner a National Retailer’s award. Sheryl grew up in a U.S. Navy family and then served for 23 years in the U.S. Army Reserves before retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel. Growing up, she swam on the Andrews Air Force Base swim team, which instilled a love for sports and the outdoors. She is also the proud mom of three grown “kids” who also value sports: two are alpine ski-racing coaches, and one is a modern dancer.

Tammy Irelan, BS
Tammy Irelan is Web Administrator for the Human Performance Research Center. She received her bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Computer Information Systems from Simpson College in Indianola, IA. Her experience in information technology includes System Administration and Software Development. Ms. Irelan is a military spouse whose avocational interests include yoga and plant-based nutrition.

Lorne Merriett, BA
Lorne Merriett is the social media specialist for Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP). He previously served for 4 years as CHAMP administrative assistant. He received his bachelor’s degree in Business Marketing from Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA, and has worked in the fields of finance, sales, and customer support for a combined 12 years.

His duties with CHAMP focus on all aspects related to social media for HPRC, OPSS, and Go for Green®.  In addition to social media, Lorne dabbles in other marketing aspects of CHAMP such as briefs, focus groups, and conference exhibit booths.

Lauren Messina, PhD, LCMFT
Lauren Messina is Senior Family Fitness Scientist for the Human Performance Resource Center. She holds a master’s degree in Couple and Family Therapy and a doctorate degree in Family Science from the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland, College Park. Dr. Messina’s research interests include family health behaviors, child and adolescent social and emotional development, family fitness and resilience, mindful approaches to wellness, and evaluating family and parenting programs.

At the Human Performance Resource Center Dr. Messina is the content lead for the domains of Family & Relationships and Total Force Fitness. With her clinical and research experiences in these areas, she is the subject-matter expert in optimal family functioning and holistic approaches to health and wellness. Dr. Messina also teaches at the University of Maryland and also works with families in private practice. She is a licensed couple and family therapist. 

Christiane Minnick, BA, MA, L.Ac.
Christiane Minnick is the Lay Editor and Graphic Designer for the Human Performance Research Center. She received her bachelor's degree in Communications Arts and Design from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, and has worked in the fields of graphic design, corporate identity, advertising, and marketing for over 20 years.

Christiane has a long-standing interest in how a person can influence his or her own health and well-being. In 2003, she enrolled at Tai Sophia Institute for the Healing Arts and graduated in 2007 with a Master's degree in acupuncture. She is a licensed acupuncturist and practices in Takoma Park, Maryland.

Chris Niewinski
Chris Niewinski is HPRC’s Multimedia Specialist. He is a graduate of the Art Institute of Philadelphia, specializing in Computer Animation. He also attended The Kubert School, which is one of only a few schools in the world focusing entirely on comic book illustration and cartooning.

Chris brings 16 years of experience working in 3D animation, motion graphics, and video in a variety of industries and products. He has used his skills to help technology, advertising, entertainment, military, education, finance, marketing, and sales organizations visualize their ideas. Previously, he worked for an augmented-reality technology company specializing in Google Glass software and other wearables, demonstrating the possible uses in military and consumer scenarios. Chris’s video experience includes creating TV spots for The Neat Scanner, CompUSA, DirecTV, and Dish Network. He also spent some time in Fayetteville NC creating 3D animated scenarios for language training at the JFK Special Warfare Center and School in Ft Bragg, NC. Chris also has worked with the 3D and animation teams responsible for The Simpson Ride attraction at Universal Studios theme parks.

Gloria Park, PhD, MAPP
Gloria Park is the Senior Mind-Body Scientist with the Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP), where she translates research in the domains of Human Performance Optimization (HPO) for service members and their families across all military branches. Prior to this role, she provided resilience and performance enhancement training for soldiers, DA civilians, and family members for 7 years, first with the University of Pennsylvania and most recently with the Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness (CSF2) program.

Dr. Park is a dedicated practitioner of sport, performance, and positive psychology. She spent her childhood as a competitive figure skater, which grew into her passion for helping others to strive for fulfillment and well-being. Dr. Park received her Master of Applied Positive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, where she has been part of the instructional staff for 10 years, and a Doctorate in Kinesiology/Psychology of Human Movement from Temple University. She is a proud Army spouse and a dedicated mom.

Ayanna Shivers, MPH
Ayanna Shivers is one of the HPRC’s Psychology Education Specialist and coordinator of the Mind Tactics section, focusing on cognitive and social aspects of human performance optimization. With an extensive academic background in psychology and public health, she has composed and implemented health research projects domestically and internationally. Her research interests include psychosocial variables of health and human performance. Also, Ayanna is an experienced research presenter and RIVA certified focus group moderator.

Dale Stephano, MS
Dale Stefano is Content Lead for the Physical Fitness domain of the Human Performance Resource Center. He also serves as the Deputy Director of CHAMP’s Human Performance Lab. He received his Masters of Science in Health and Exercise Science from Wake Forest University. He has more than 8 years of professional experience in both research and clinical settings in the area of exercise science. Dale joined the CHAMP team in 2012 after 5 years working as an exercise physiologist in a cardiac rehab program in Virginia.

Carol M. Stockton, MArch
Carol Stockton is a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles, with a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology; the Gemological Institute of America with a Graduate Gemologist degree; and the California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, with a Masters in Architecture. She is Technical Editor for the HPRC, with a background of 20 years as technical editor for an award-winning, international, peer-reviewed professional journal as well as copyeditor and technical editor for books, monographs, and other publications. She is also the author or co-author of numerous research and other professional articles in the fields of gemology and architecture, as well as popular articles. Now retired from 10 years as a research gemologist followed by 20 years as an architect, Ms. Stockton’s avocational interests include dance and equestrian sports.

Kimberly J. Stoudt, Ed.D., LAT, ATC, EMT, EMT-T
Dr. Kimberly Stoudt is a nationally certified athletic trainer and emergency medical technician (basic and tactical) with more than 16 years of experience diagnosing and treating sports-related injuries and conditions. As a professor of sports medicine, she has developed and delivered lectures and labs on the recognition, evaluation, and treatment of athletic injuries. Dr. Stoudt has served on medical teams at the U.S. Olympic Training Centers in Colorado Springs and Chula Vista, as well as at the Salt Lake Olympic Winter Games, Ironman U.S. Championships, Pennsylvania State University Beaver Stadium, New York City and Philadelphia Marathons, Special Olympics Pennsylvania, and the National Hockey Festival.

Dr. Stoudt is an experienced member of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Surge Medical Assistance Response Team and an American Red Cross Disaster Action Team. She has served as a faculty leader for study abroad trips to Greece, Australia, Ecuador, Vietnam, Taiwan, El Salvador, and the Dominican Republic.

Georgia (Gia) Torpey, BA
Gia Torpey is Senior Technical Editor for the Human Performance Resource Center. She currently provides editing support for HPRC. Gia has served as a functional expert in technical writing and instructional design for clients in the military, environmental, intelligence, aviation, and energy communities. She has 20+ years of experience creating user documentation, educational materials, and technical training media for multiple government agencies. Gia has also developed interactive courseware for numerous proprietary applications. She received a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Maryland.

Avi Walter, MS
Avi Walter is an Integrative Health Education Specialist at the Human Performance Resource Center. He has a Master’s of Science in Physiology & Complementary and Alternative Medicine from Georgetown University and has been trained in the scientific methodology of systematic reviews and the healing practice of Reiki (Level I). Avi has a special interest in how all forms of care can utilize placebo and placebo-like effects to improve performance and wellness.

In addition, Avi’s background in social psychology and music contribute to his ideas about self-care and stress reduction. With this skill set he provides a unique approach to helping our service members.

Caitlin Wong, MS, RD, LDN
Caitlin Wong is a Nutrition Education Specialist for the Human Performance Resource Center and a registered dietitian. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nutrition from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH and her Master of Science degree in Nutrition from Tufts University in Boston, MA. Though her background is in clinical nutrition, Caitlin has a strong interest in adult and childhood obesity, nutrition for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and chronic disease prevention.

Stacey Zeno, MS
Stacey Zeno is the Chief of Operations for HPRC, is a graduate of Hood College with a Bachelor of Arts in Management, and of American University in Washington, D.C. with a Master of Science in Health Promotion Management. Ms Zeno has authored two published manuscripts on the topics of cardiovascular disease and metabolic syndrome from her work in the Human Performance Laboratory (HPL) at Uniformed Services University.


Preetha Anna Abraham, MA
Preetha Anna Abraham serves as Research Associate at the Human Performance Laboratory, USUHS. She received her Master of Arts in Applied Psychology from the University of Kerala, India, in July 1999. Her field of specialization was in Clinical and Neuropsychology.

Preetha joined Uniformed Services University in July 2004 and has since served in various capacities in the Department of Psychiatry and Department of Military and Emergency Medicine. Her research involvement at USUHS has been primarily in post-traumatic stress, traumatic brain injury, electrophysiological evaluation of attention processing, effects of allostatic load on health disparities, and heat intolerance stress.

At the Human Performance Resource Center her work primarily relates to reviewing literature articles that account for various psychological factors that affect human performance and translating them into educational materials that would benefit warfighters, researchers, and medical professionals.

Lani Bernier, BS
Lani Bernier is a Research Assistant for the Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP) and a contributor to HPRC. She has been a research chemist in the Human Performance Laboratory at the Uniformed Services University for 30 years. Her research involvement at USUHS/CHAMP has been with measures of stress responses to exercise. These measures were performed using RIA, ELISA, Western Blot, and other research laboratory instrumentation. She has her BS in biochemistry from the University of Maryland.

Lani is a stroke survivor with left-sided hemiplegia. As such, she brings real-life experience to the issues pertinent to wounded warriors. She contributes material to HPRC’s website about topics that affect Warfighters with physical limitations.

Josh Kazman, MS
Josh Kazman is a research associate with Uniformed Services University (USU) Human Performance Lab. He has a masters degree in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis on research from Loyola College in Baltimore. Mr. Kazman has worked at USU since 2008, and has worked on a variety of projects and publications related to health disparities, heat tolerance, cardiovascular disease, and injury prevention.

Katie Kirkpatrick, MS, RD, LDN, CDE
Katie Kirkpatrick is a Research Associate Nutritionist at the Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP) and contributor to HPRC nutrition content. She completed her dietetic internship and Master of Science in Nutrition at Boston University.

Katie has worked in the nutrition field for nearly ten years. Most recently, she spent almost four years as part of the Integrated Health team in the Internal Medicine Clinic at Walter Reed-Bethesda counseling and educating service members, veterans, and their dependents on nutrition and healthy eating.

Katie’s nutrition interests include performance nutrition, plant-based eating, mindful eating, and diabetes.

Peter Lisman, PhD, ATC
Peter Lisman is a Research Associate with the Uniformed Services University (USU) Human Performance Laboratory. He has his PhD in Exercise Physiology from the University of Miami, FL, a master’s degree in Athletic Training, and is a certified Athletic Trainer. Dr. Lisman is part of a research team that is presently examining the usefulness of various functional movement assessment tools in predicting injury in military populations and the role of heat tolerance testing in determining heat intolerance for prevention and care of exertional heat illness.

For the center, Dr. Lisman contributes healthy tips on physical fitness and human performance related topics.

Media Center

Branding for HPRC can be found here. If additional information or sizes are needed, please send an email to


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HPRC PowerPoint Slides


HPRC Brochure [PDF]


HPRC Dietary Supplements Poster  [A compressed, high-resolution PDF]HPRC DS Poster Thumbnail

Click on the image to the right for a preview.




HPRC works to consolidate and distribute the best information about human performance optimization from military and civilian sources. We are glad to count the following groups among our partners in this effort.

Our Partners:

CHAMP_logo_small.jpgConsortium for Health and Military Performance
CHAMP is a Uniformed Services University (USU) and joint service effort that focuses on the health and performance of the warfighter. They are a joint medical resource for the Department of Defense for education, basic and clinical research, and clinical expertise in the area of military unique human performance optimization.

Force_Health_Protection-Readiness_logo.jpg Force Health Protection and Readiness
FHPR provides information to: safeguard the health and well-being of Service members and their families, promote and sustain a healthy and fit force, prevent injuries and illness and protect the force from health hazards, and sustain world-class medical and rehabilitative care to the sick and injured anywhere in the world.

NMCD-logo.gif Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
This database provides a comprehensive listing of brand name product ingredients and examines natural medicines through the lens of evidence based medicine.

Real_Warriors_logo.jpg Real Warriors Campaign
The Real Warriors Campaign is an initiative launched by the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) to promote the processes of building resilience, facilitating recovery and supporting reintegration of returning service members, veterans and their families. The Real Warriors Campaign combats the stigma associated with seeking psychological health care and treatment and encourages service members to increase their awareness and use of these resources.

Medical Warfighter ForumMedical Warfighter Forum (WfF)
Connecting AMEDD Professionals Army-wide. The Medical Warfighter Forum (MedWfF) provides diverse and comprehensive key resources that will transform the way AMEDD professionals collaborate, share best practices, and interface across the Army Medical Department (AMEDD) enterprise.

The Defense Department Hearing Center of Excellence (HCE) works to improve the health and quality of life of service members and veterans by reducing the tangible and intangible costs of hearing loss and auditory injury. Through enhanced diagnosis, assessment and hearing protection, HCE ’s five directorate groups work together to prevent injury, care for the hearing impaired, educate the armed forces about hearing loss and increase the operational effectiveness of the military.

Defense & Veterans Center for Integrative Pain Management
Established in 2003, the Defense and Veterans Center for Integrative Pain Management (DVCIPM) seeks to improve the management of pain in military and civilian medicine. Through clinical research efforts, it has become a model for effective integration of acute and chronic pain medicine.

Vision Center of Excellence
The Vision Center of Excellence (VCE) is charged with improving the care of military personnel and veterans affected by eye injuries and diseases, including visual dysfunctions related to traumatic brain injury. In addition, they are developing a Defense and Veterans Eye Injury and Vision Registry (Vision Registry) to track eye injuries and promote research into treatment, rehabilitation, and restoration.

The Center for Rehabilitation Sciences Research (CRSR) advances the rehabilitative care for service members with combat related injuries through synergistic research projects and treatment strategies to promote the successful return to duty and community reintegration of injured service members.

Guard Your Health LogoGuard Your Health
Guard Your Health is a central place online for Army National Guard Soldiers and family members to find information and resources on health and medical readiness. Website visitors can access health tips, expert commentary, and community forums on topics such as nutrition, exercise, stress, sleep, dental health, readiness, and family resilience.

DoD Work-Life Wellness logoDoD Personal Wellness (CAC-enabled)
The DoD Personal Wellness website promotes employee well being and engagement through a number of wellness initiatives and a monthly wellness theme which brings seasonal and timely tips to make healthy food choices,  increase daily activity, sleep better, manage stress, become tobacco free and more.

PNG of Military OneSource logoMilitary OneSource
Military OneSource is both a call center and a website providing comprehensive information, referral, and assistance on every aspect of military life. Military OneSource services are confidential and available 24/7 to active duty, National Guard, and reserve service members, their families, and survivors.

AHFTF LogoA Head for the Future, an initiative of the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, raises awareness of the signs and symptoms of traumatic brain injuries and treatment options available. The organization educates the military community about the importance of preventing brain injuries in non-combat settings.

Contact Us

We welcome your questions from the field regarding human performance issues, comments about the work we do, suggestions for how we can serve you, and queries for collaboration. Please contact us at and your email will be forwarded to the appropriate research specialist or director.