The US Navy requires new recruits to undergo fitness assessments as part of the recruitment process and other tests semi-annually to determine the physical fitness of personnel. Below is some information about the fitness requirements and standards. This information is presented for discussion - for up-to-date information see official sources. See also the Candidate Fitness Assessment (CFA) used to assess candidates for the US Naval Academy, and testing for the US Marines and the Coast Guard.
Navy Physical Readiness Test (PRT)
A Physical Readiness Test (PRT) is conducted semi-annually by the United States Navy, and some other military organizations, to determine the physical fitness of personnel. The PRT is just one element of a total health, physical fitness, and readiness program. The Physical Readiness Test consists of meeting height/weight or body fat standards, doing a minimum amount of sit ups and push-ups, and running a 1.5 mile run or other endurance event within a set time.
Personnel who do not meet the Navy's standards or fail the PRT are required to participate in a remedial program. The minimal satisfactory standards on the PRT establishes a base level of physical capacity, though personnel are expected to strive to optimize fitness by exceeding minimum standards and achieving continual improvement.
Changes in 2016
New rules were added at the beginning of 2016 - a single-step abdominal measurement for those who don't meet the Navy's maximum weight allowances by height, as well as a rise in body fat limits to a maximum 26% for men and 35% for women.
Sit-ups will be axed from the Navy's physical readiness test starting in 2020. Sailors can expect to do the plank instead. The push-ups are cadence push-ups now. There will also be the option to do a rowing test alternative for the cardio test component.
Test Outline (ssoon to be updated)
The PRT testing procedure involves four separate events. The events are all to be completed on the same day, in the following sequence. There has to be at least two minutes between events, but no more than 15 minutes. Due to logistical issues, the swim may not always be available as an alternative to the run. Also, a body composition assessment (BCA) must be performed between 24-30 hrs prior to the PRT.
- Cardiovascular event (1.5 mile run/walk or 500m swim or elliptical trainer / stationary cycle)
There are multiple scoring ranges including are listed below. The required levels for each score is dependent on age and sex.
OUTSTANDING - Performance above or equal to top 10%.
EXCELLENT - Performance in top 25%, but less than OUTSTANDING.
GOOD - Performance better than or equal to lowest 25%, but less than EXCELLENT.
SATISFACTORY / PROBATIONARY - Performance in bottom 25%, but above lowest 10%.
UNSATISFACTORY - Performance in lowest 10%.
- Testing procedures for the US Marines, Coast Guard and Navy Seals.
- Navy Fitness Testing around the world.
- About the US defense force tape test
- Testing in other armed forces and similar services.
- Descriptions of the PRT test procedures: sit & reach, curl-ups, push-ups, run/walk, elliptical trainer and swim.
- Videos of forces fitness testing
- Poll: Should women have the same fitness testing standards as men?
- Navy Body Composition Assessment (BCA)
- See also the Candidate Fitness Assessment (CFA)