A New IPPT for the SAF!
After almost 30 years, the SAF will be changing our Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT) format, from a five-station to a three-station test format. Soon, our soldier’s will be tested in push-ups, sit-ups, and a 2.4km run in their IPPT. Accompanying this change in format is a new scoring system that is designed to motivate servicemen to do their best in all the stations.
Fitness is essential to soldiering. In the Army, we take a comprehensive view on building up our soldier’s fitness. Soldiers must be both physically fit, and also combat fit. What’s the difference? Physical fitness is the measure of a person’s basic fitness; such as a person’s strength, endurance, and stamina. Combat fitness takes it one step further; it is how well a soldier is able to perform physically in a combat environment. For example how well a soldier can climb a rope, or carry and march with his equipment across the battlefield.
With the recent review of the Standard Obstacle Course and the introduction of the Vocational Obstacle Course, the Army has put in place a comprehensive training and test regime for Combat fitness. Our soldiers build and maintain their fitness through these obstacle courses, as well as through route marches and field exercises. It is now timely to review IPPT, which is a measure of a soldier’s basic fitness, so that the Army’s approach to fitness training and assessment is complete.
Our Army, having servicemen spanning a wide range of ages, decided to adopt a fundamental approach in reviewing the IPPT; by first addressing our servicemen’s attitude towards physical fitness. Instead of viewing IPPT as an imposition and a test requirement, we want to encourage our servicemen to view healthy living and personal fitness as part of our lifestyle; a lifestyle that will benefit them in more ways than just being fit soldiers.
Therefore, by simplifying our IPPT format, we aim to allow our servicemen to train on their own, more regularly, and with convenience. Servicemen no longer need to rely on specialised equipment and technique to pass their IPPT, but incorporate the new stations as exercises in their daily routine. As they train more regularly, they will become fitter, and naturally do better in their IPPT. The new IPPT will apply to everyone; Regulars, Full-Time National Servicemen (NSFs), and NSmen.
The new IPPT stations will measure our soldiers’ upper body strength through the Push-Up station; abdominal or core strength through the Sit-Up station; and their cardiovascular fitness, lower body strength and endurance, through the 2.4km run. It is simple, effective, and convenient!
Points will be awarded for their performance in the 3 stations; and these points will be added up to a total score which will determine a serviceman’s performance standard (ie, Pass, Pass with Incentive, Silver or Gold). Servicemen can rely on their strengths to maximise their points and with this flexibility in the scoring method, we aim to encourage all servicemen to do their best. As a rule, they must however still score at least 1 point for each station. Of course, to ensure that the Army remains an effective fighting force, we will not lower our standards. Servicemen will still need to train for their IPPT to pass and to do well; but with a simpler format they can now train more regularly, and with training, do well.
We will also introduce more age categories. There will be three-year age categories instead of the current five-year categories to provide a better performance-to-age match. With more age categories, our standards are now more sensitive to the effects of age on the physical fitness of our servicemen.
Give it a try! With this new IPPT, and with the $100 increase in monetary incentives for doing well, there will be reasons to smile when the PTI tells us to knock it down!
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