Top 5 Online Firefighter Wellness and NFPA Training Courses

Top 5 Online Firefighter Wellness and NFPA Training Courses

Firefighter wellness is crucial for maintaining safety and effectiveness on the job, which can be mentally and physically demanding. It also has a significant impact on a firefighter's overall well-being, including their short and long-term mental and physical health, as well as their relationships with family, friends, and colleagues.

A comprehensive wellness program that addresses all aspects of a firefighter's well-being can help them to maintain a healthy balance in all aspects of their lives. Incorporating ongoing wellness training into your training program is essential for a holistic approach to firefighter health, safety, and preparedness. Such training should cover all aspects of wellness, such as physical fitness, stress management, healthy nutrition, and mental health support, to help mitigate the occupational risks and demands of the job.

  • In 2021, an estimated 60,750 firefighter injuries occurred in the line of duty (NFPA, 2022).
  • Firefighters face a 9% increase in cancer diagnoses and a 14% increase in cancer-related deaths, compared to the general population in the U.S. (NIOSH, 2013).  
  • Approximately 22% of firefighters will meet the criteria for PTSD during their career (IAFF, 2019). 


Anywhere, Anytime Online Firefighter Wellness Training

Leverage these top 5 online training courses in Vector’s firefighter training catalog to provide your crews with the training they need for optimum wellness.

1. Health and Wellness in Public Safety

According to a study conducted by Harvard School of Public Health and Cambridge Health Alliance, law enforcement officers are 30–70 times more likely to be at risk for a sudden cardiac event. In addition, the life spans for first responders are approximately 15 years less than those of other professions. Shift work, stress, poor relaxation techniques, chemical imbalances, and poor diet have all been listed as primary causal factors. It has been suggested that first responders make small efforts to become more educated and aware of their individual health and wellness needs. This course seeks to educate first responders with some terms, techniques, and lifestyle habits that can lead to a more healthy and productive life.

2. NFPA 1851 - Cancer-Related Risks of Firefighting

This course, which is guided by NFPA® 1851, Standard on Selection, Care, and Maintenance of Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting (2014), aims to provide a thorough understanding of fire-service-related cancer risks for today’s firefighters and fire personnel. The importance of turnout gear care, maintenance, and inspections will be stressed, along with your responsibilities for proper decontamination, isolation, and reporting of issues. Turnout gear interface areas and their potential weaknesses will be explained, including target organs that may be affected by repeated exposures to carcinogens when interface areas are breached. Finally, the course will present eight of the most common carcinogens a firefighter may regularly face in today’s homes, and how those chemicals develop within closed-space fire environments.

3. NFPA 1500 - Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the Fire Department

There are moments in life that are so horrifying and graphic that they are vividly disturbing in a guttural way that is on a scale no person should ever have to see or endure. Unfortunately, tragedies do and will continue to occur. In each instance, the men and women of the fire and EMS services are summoned to help stabilize and start the process of putting things back together for the citizens they so faithfully serve. This is done at all hours and under any condition, where the best interests of others are placed first and before their own. However, each of these incidents takes a toll upon first responders. Even if they are unaware of the impact at that moment, repeated exposures can systematically affect mental wellbeing. Throughout this course, you will learn the progression from exposure to behavioral health issues, how a mental health crisis presents, and the deadly consequence of responder suicide.

4. NFPA 1021 - Firefighter Safety and Health

Firefighting is an inherently hazardous occupation, but that does not imply that some of these hazards cannot be prevented or at least minimized. Countless injuries occur yearly that could have been prevented if greater attention had been paid beforehand to the risks involved. By taking responsibility for the safety and health of department members, fire officers can play an important role in reducing these risks. This course provides a general overview of health and safety issues that confront members of the fire service. The course introduces current local, state and federal laws pertaining to occupational safety and health that apply to fire officers. It emphasizes the importance of identifying occupational hazards that exist--both actual and potential. Factors related to physical and mental fitness and basic health, such as basic knowledge of exercise physiology, good nutrition and stress management, are also reviewed.

5. NFPA 1584 - Firefighter Rehabilitation

Firefighting is a labor-intense occupation. The heavy physical and mental demands placed on firefighters in an emergency can push the human body to its limits and sometimes beyond it. Over half of all fatalities in the fire service are caused by stress, overexertion, and related medical issues, and these also contribute to a large proportion of injuries and illnesses among fire personnel. This course reviews the requirements and guidelines for rehab operations. The course discusses topics contained in the NFPA 1584 Standard and is divided into two modules. The first module discusses aspects related to the regulations and standards pertinent to rehab and their requirements, such as rehab staff roles and responsibilities, pre-incident preparation, and setting up rehab operations at the scene. The second module discusses the practical aspects of rehab related to evaluation and treatment for personnel entering rehab.


Prioritizing Firefighter Wellness

Firefighter wellness is important for preventing personal injury, managing stress and emotions, and mitigating long-term health conditions that can result from occupational hazards. Prioritizing firefighter wellness in your training program can help extend careers, improve retention, and ultimately save lives.

To learn more about how you can support the overall well-being of your crew with Vector Solutions’ NFPA-based training covering firefighter wellness and beyond, please visit our firefighter course catalog or request a demo today.

Want to Know More?

Reach out and a Vector Solutions representative will respond back to help answer any questions you might have.