US Navy Starts Beta Test of Nine Physical Fitness Exercises

The Navy, working with the University of Memphis Department of Health and Sport Sciences, began a beta test of nine physical fitness exercises July 11.

Bill Moore, director, Navy Physical Readiness Program,
said there are currently no plans to change the Navy’s physical readiness test, but the study will examine viability other options that may have greater operational relevance.

“The purpose of the beta test is for research purposes only and is intended to collect data,” said Moore.

“The results of this beta test could be used to develop a physical readiness test that incorporates more functional movements which better mimic Navy job-specific tasks,” said Moore.

He said Navy officials will need to analyze the results after the test concludes later this month.

The beta test examines Sailors participation in nine exercises. Cadence push-ups, single-leg plank and single-leg wall squats are used to measure muscular endurance. The leg-hip dynamometer, hand-grip dynamometer and standing long jump measure muscular strength. The pro-agility shuttle, 300-yard shuttle, five kilometer bike test and two kilometer rower measure anaerobic capacity.

The test exercises were selected to allow researchers to examine two major components of physical fitness: health and skill related. They feature common movements practiced both in sports and on the job.

“Health-related components include cardiovascular fitness, body composition, flexibility, muscular strength, and muscular endurance,” said Lt. Cmdr. David Peterson, Navy Physical Readiness Program exercise physiologist. “Skill related components include speed, agility, balance, coordination, reaction time and power.”

More than 180 Sailors, male and female, representing a full spectrum of age and fitness levels are participating to allows researchers to examine applicability for the Navy demographic.

Personnel Specialist 2nd Class (SW/AW) Joshua Sickles, assigned to Navy Recruiting Command, said he typically scores excellent on his semi-annual physical readiness test. During the beta test, Sickles performed the single-leg plank, standing long jump and two-kilometer rower during his first test session.

“It was different than what we do now and harder” said Sickles.

Sailors in the beta test will participate in a total of six sessions.

“This is an exciting opportunity to participate in a state-of-the-art research study,” Moore said. “However, I need to reemphasize that this is for research purposes only and that there are currently no plans to change the Navy PRT.”


Source: navy, July 18, 2011;