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Marines studying mindfulness-based training

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© This 2011 image provided by Robert Skidmore shows Dr. Elizabeth Stanley, instructing a class of U.S. Marines at Camp Pendleton, Calif. © This 2011 image provided by Robert Skidmore shows Dr. Elizabeth Stanley, instructing a class of U.S. Marines at Camp Pendleton, Calif.

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. (AP) — The U.S. Marine Corps is studying how to make its troops even tougher through meditative practices, yoga-type stretching and exercises based on mindfulness.

The School Infantry-West at Camp Pendleton will offer the eight-week course starting Tuesday to about 80 Marines as part of an ongoing experiment.

Marine Corps officials say they will build a curriculum that would integrate mindfulness-based techniques into their training if they see positive results. Mindfulness is a Buddhist-inspired concept that emphasizes active attention on the moment to keep the mind in the present.

Facing a record suicide rate and thousands of veterans seeking treatment for post-traumatic stress, the military has been searching for ways to reduce strains on service members burdened with more than a decade of fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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