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What is the New Army Fitness Test and Can you Pass it?

What is the New Army Fitness Test and Can you Pass it?

 

As of October 2020, all United States soldiers are to pass the new Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT). The new test replaces the measure of physical readiness since the early 1980s, the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT). The older test consists of a two-mile run, maximum pushups in two minutes, and maximum sit-ups in two minutes. It’s administered during entry or basic training and repeated every 6 months with their unit.  

The new ACFT test adds six more performance/readiness events: Maximum Deadlift (MDL), Standing Power Throw (SPT), Hand-Release Push-Up (HRP), Sprint-Drag-Carry (SDC), Leg Tuck (LTK), and a 2 Mile Run (2MR).  

 

Could you pass the new test, exhibiting US Combat readiness? 

According to the U.S. Army, “the Army Combat Fitness Test will better connect fitness with combat readiness for all Soldiers” by:  

  • Improving soldier and unit readiness
  • Transforming the army’s fitness culture
  • Reducing preventable injuries 
  • Enhancing mental toughness and stamina

 

Here are the 6 new events in the APFT, the requirements to pass them, and why they’re required. Try them, and see how you compare. 

A minimum of 60 points is required to pass each of the six events. The number of points awarded for each Event activity is listed below.

Event #1: 3-Repetition Maximum Deadlift (MDL)

You must deadlift the maximum weight possible, three times in a row.

Why it’s required: It simulates lifting and moving heavy loads from the ground, such as personnel or equipment. 

It helps soldiers avoid upper and lower back injuries caused by carrying heavy loads on their backs for long periods of time and distance. 

To do this exercise properly, you need strong back and leg muscles. It requires muscular strength, balance, and flexibility and you'll need a 60-pound trap bar and plates to complete it. 

In the MDL, 60 and 100 point scores are received when you respectively complete a 140 pound and 340 pound MDL. 

How can I train for the MDL event? 

Sumo Squats, Alternate Staggered Squat Jumps, and Forward Lunges. (Or, just do the 3-Repetition Maximum Deadlift!) 

Event #2: Standing Power Throw (SPT)

You’ll need a 10-pound medicine ball. You’ll be throwing the medicine ball backward and overhead for distance. 

Why it’s required: It demonstrates your explosive power, balance, and flexibility.

It represents how you can perform quick, explosive movements, not unlike what soldiers would be doing to move equipment and personnel in the field. 

60 and 100 point scores are awarded when you can respectively throw the ball 4 and 13 meters. 

How can I train for the SPT event?

Power Jump, Overhead Push Press, and Tuck Jump. 

 Event #3: Hand-Release Push-Up (HRP)

You’ll need to finish as many hand-release push-ups in 2 minutes.

Why it’s required: It demonstrates a soldier’s upper body endurance by practicing the repetitive pushing movements used in combat and other tasks. 

60 and 100 point scores are awarded when you complete 10 and 70 repetitions. 

How can I train for the HRP event?

Supine Chest Press, 8-count T Push-ups, Incline Bench, and Quadraplex. 

Event #4: Sprint-Drag-Carry (SDC)

You’ll need two 40-pound kettlebells and a 90-pound sled to perform this event. 

It’s performed by doing five 50 meter shuttles for time where you sprint, drag, lateral, carry, and sprint.

It tests short, high-intensity tasks from a few seconds to minutes long.

Why it’s required: It tests a soldier’s agility, strength, and endurance. 

60 and 100 point scores are rewarded when you complete the SDC in 3:35 and 1:40 minutes. 

How can I train for the HRP event?

Straight Leg Deadlifts, Bent Over Rows, and 300m Shuttle Runs. 
 

Event #5: Leg Tuck (LTK)

You’ll need a climbing bar to complete the Leg Tuck event.

The goal of the Leg Tuck event is to complete as many leg tucks in two minutes as possible. 

Why it’s required: It tests a soldier’s strength and endurance, as well as grip, arm, shoulder muscles. These exercises help soldiers avoid injury and train them to carry heavy loads. 

60 and 100 point scores are rewarded when you do one and 20 reps. 

How can I train for the HRP event?

Bent-leg Raise, Leg Tuck and Twist, and Alternating Grip Pull-ups. 

 

Event #6: 2 Mile Run (2MR)

You must complete a 2 mile run on a flat outdoor course.

Why it’s required: It measures aerobic endurance.

Scores awarded:  60 points for 2 miles in 21:00 minutes. Or, 100 points awarded for a 2 mile run in 12:45 minutes.

How can I train for this?

Practice running until you can complete a 2 mile run in those times.

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