New Zealand Police Force Testing

Recruits for the New Zealand Police Force are required to undergo a fitness assessment as part of the recruitment process and ongoing once they are employed. Below is some information about the fitness requirements and standards. This information is presented for discussion and may be out of date - for the latest information see official sources. There is also information about NZ prison guard fitness testing.

Assessment Tests

NZ Police recruits must be physically fit and in excellent health. There is no minimum height requirement. The physical tests to be completed are the Physical Appraisal Test (PAT), and the Physical Competency Test (PCT). Also, every two years New Zealand Police officers are made to undergo the PCT, with a small part of their salary riding on them passing. (source: information from an article in the New Zealand herald online, and the New Zealand Police website, 23 May 2013)

Physical Appraisal Test (PAT)

Physical Competency Test (PCT)

The PCT is a timed run on an obstacle course, involving 12 physical tasks, including a 200 meter run, pushing a trailer, walking along a raised beam, crawling under hurdles, and climbing through a window.

NZ Department of Corrections

There is a Physical Readiness Assessment (PRA) fitness tests for guards. The six-step test would grade each employee either green, amber or red. Amber employees would be able to repeat the test in a fortnight and if still graded amber would be provided with support and re-tested in a year. Red employees would have to submit to further medical and safety assessments to determine if they could remain in their roles or have their duties changed.

The assessment consists of six activities:

  1. 300m maximum speed walk
  2. simulated search
  3. simulated emergency response
  4. simulated spontaneous "control and restraint"
  5. simulated rescue
  6. 300m recovery walk

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There are over 300 fitness tests, so it is not easy to choose the right one to do. You should consider the validity, reliability, costs and ease of use of each test. Use our guide to conducting, recording, and interpreting fitness tests. Any questions, please ask or search for your answer. To keep up with the latest in sport science and this website, subscribe to our newsletter. We are also on facebook and twitter.

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