If you were to create a physical fitness or combat fitness test for the US military (any branch) what event would you use to test troops and why?
I have thought about this a good bit. I'm going to use army terms but it could easily apply to any branch
The best PT test forces soldiers to be fit. the trouble with tests is a person has so many muscle groups that to test most of them ( or all of them) would take a very long time. No matter how different the exercises are from each other, the person will wear out. So you could have the test over 2 -3 days or you have to pick events 3–4 events ( any more and you risk losing most of a day to a test). But with predictable events someone can have a strange lack of general fitness but still pass the events.
My solution non predictable pt test. It would work like this
- a leg / ab exercise ( and until you are in formation you won't know if it will be Rowers, squats, leg press, or other events)
- Run / walk 1.25 miles aka 5 laps aka 2km
- Arm event ( push ups? Dips? Pull ups who knows you sure don't be ready for anything)
- Another 1.25 miles/ 5 laps/ 2km
- The special event based on the brach of the unit you are attached to. (This needs more explanation. So if you are in an infantry unit - even if you are a medic- there would be a list of tasks. Perhaps a drag or carry type task. This special list would be created by those generals in change of training these MOS. If you are an MP attached to a field artillery, you better be prepared to lift dummy mortar for the test.
Now one more interesting twist. Each event has a number you must do. The only thing we track is the time.
You : Ican do 100 push-ups in 2 minutes
Me: great but you only need to do 50!
You: to easy
Me: there is no recovery time.
You: wait what-
Me: when you run in full blast you can take a breather but the clock won't stop. And and you do 50 push-ups in 45 seconds the time to run is now.
You: oh now hang on
Me: you can walk if you want. Just walk fast. Really fast.
The time you need will be based on MOS and rank. Why not age or gender. Because an E-9 who is field artillery is less likely to load mortars than an E-4 who is struggling to rank up and joined at 35years old.