Are you building up to join the Australian Defence Force and enrol to the Physical Fitness Assessment? Passing the fitness test marks a crucial point in new recruit training, so it makes sense for candidates to ensure they are primed and ready by the time the assessment comes around. If you’re counting down the days until your ADF fitness test, here are some pointers to ensure you’re mentally and physically prepared for the challenges that lie ahead, and some tips to maximise your chances of success.
In an ideal world, if you already had the date of your test confirmed, you would be both mentally and physically ready for the assessment. However, research conducted by Police Fit shows that many recruits don’t feel confident about passing the test beforehand. If you’re unsure about what the fitness test entails or what it really takes to pass the assessment with flying colours, this guide should prove useful. We use the Army criteria since that's the most challenging out of the 3 departments for both male and female applicants.
Elements of the ADF test
Push-ups demonstrate strength and stability, and they are used widely in armed forces fitness tests. The ADF requires you to demonstrate that you can execute a series of push-ups perfectly, so it’s wise to practice on a regular basis and incorporate push-ups in your daily training.
In addition, you will also benefit from other strength-building exercises, such as presses, and moves designed to strengthen your core, such as sit-ups and pull-ups. To pass this part of the physical fitness test, Army applicants will be required to perform:
Many people practice sit-ups as part of a training regime. However, military sit-ups are slightly different. They are more precise, and you must perform them sharply at 3-second intervals. To pass this part of the assessment, it’s important to hone your technique and to practice frequently. If you lose your rhythm or you fail a series of reps, you won’t pass the assessment. The PFA (physical fitness assessment) requires army candidates to complete:
The Beep Test (also known as the multi-stage fitness test)
The final section of the ADF fitness test is the Beep Test. This gruelling challenge involves running 20-metre shuttles within a set timeframe. As the test progresses, the period of time between the audible beeps decreases, so you’ll need both speed and stamina to succeed. To pass the Physical Fitness Assessment and be invited to the Army training camp, you must reach level 7.5. This equates to 56 shuttles in a timeframe of 6.5 minutes.
To increase your chances of beating the beep test, it’s wise to work on your endurance and strength by doing plenty of cardio training, especially intervals and sprints, combined with weights and strength-building exercises designed to target the core, the glutes, and the leg muscles.
It’s also a good idea to try and improve up your reaction time so that you can get into a rhythm in line with the frequency of the beeps.
By the time you book your date, you should be ready to pass the test and start working towards beter results so when the exam induced "stage freight" hits, you are still able to perform and meet the criteria.
You may think that's not something you need to worry about, but until you get there you wouldn't know, so why risk it?
If you get stuck, working with expert trainers to take the guesswork out of your exercise planning and keeping your workouts goal-oriented can prove helpful.
If you’re preparing your ADF application, and you’re looking for assistance with training, Police Fit can help! Feel free to get in touch with any questions or let the team know what your biggest challenge is.