University of Chichester is behind British Army’s new fitness test for recruits

Soldiers demonstrate the vehicle casualty extraction stage in the British Armys New Physical Employment Standards (Fitness Tests) for Close Combat Soldiers at the Royal Army Physical Training Corps School in Aldershot. PHOTO: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
Soldiers demonstrate the vehicle casualty extraction stage in the British Armys New Physical Employment Standards (Fitness Tests) for Close Combat Soldiers at the Royal Army Physical Training Corps School in Aldershot. PHOTO: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
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SPORTING experts from a city university have been behind a radical change to the British Army’s fitness test for wannabe soldiers.

For three years, the military has worked with scientists from the University of Chichester to produce a new ‘gender and age neutral’ series of tests.

The regime will replace the current series of physical exams that have been a staple in the recruitment process for 20 years.

Previous tests had varied time limits or requirements depending on the age, gender and potential role while all of the new tests – due to be rolled out next year – will have a set standard, regardless of how old or what sex the soldier is.

The exercises focus more on ‘functional fitness’, with recruits tested on a range of full-body exercises set to more closely mimic the physical stresses soldiers face on the battlefield.

The university’s human physiology team spent months analysing the different challenges created in modern soldiering combat situations to create the latest batch of military standards.