Are you dreaming of joining the Police forces as a community support or warranted officer? Passing the police fitness test is the first step towards making your dream come true. But what does the test entail? This guide will teach you what to expect.
What is the Police Fitness Test?
The Police Fitness Test is designed to examine your physical fitness and establish whether you have the strength and stamina to become a police officer. This test doesn’t determine your athletic performance but tests if you’re fit enough to keep up with the work.
If you want to become a police officer, you must pass a dynamic strength test and an endurance test, also known as the bleep test.
The former consists of a series of five seated chest pushes and five seated back pulls performed on a Dynomachine. The Dynomachine is an instrument designed to measure physical strength.
An effective way to prepare for this test is by training at your local gym, focusing on bench presses and lateral pull-down exercises. If you’re unsure which exercises to perform or what to focus on, a personal trainer or fitness instructor should be able to help you achieve the desired performance.
The bleep test is an endurance assessment that requires you to run several lengths on a 15-metre track.
Future police officers have to pass both assessments, but you have three attempts in total. Candidates must wait about six weeks between each attempt, but this gives you plenty of time to train and improve your performance.
Candidates who don’t pass one or both assessments can reapply after a period of six months.
Why do Police Have Fitness Requirements?
Police officers have an active job that involves lots of walking and running to fulfil daily duties. While you don’t have to be an Olympic athlete, good physical fitness is a must in this line of work. That said, most people with a reasonable fitness level can pass the police fitness test without problems.
The Bleep Test Explained
From the two mandatory assessments, most candidates find that passing the bleep test is the most challenging.
The bleep test is a multi-stage shuttle run designed to evaluate your body’s aerobic capacity. Candidates have to run between two points located 15 metres apart in a pre-established period of time that changes from shuttle to shuttle.
A pre-recorded audio tape bleeps at the set intervals; hence, the name of the test. When running, your shuttles must be synchronised with the bleeps. The test starts at a slower pace and speeds up with each lap.
Candidates must complete 35 shuttles in 3.35 minutes. The first shuttle requires you to run at a speed of 7.9kph, and the pace will increase to 9.9kph by the final shuttle.
To pass the test, you must demonstrate that you can keep up the pace regardless of the speed. Shuttle exercises outdoors or on a treadmill are the best ways to train for this test.
How to Pass the Police Fitness Test?
Preparing for the police fitness test involves regular exercising, ideally at your local gym and under the supervision of a fitness instructor or personal trainer. Based on your fitness level, your trainer may establish a HIIT and running routine similar to the one below:
- High-intensity interval training (HIIT): cycles consisting of 30 seconds sprint + 30 seconds walking
- Steady running: Sessions of 15-20 minutes of running at a steady pace
Each activity is generally preceded by a 5-minute warm-up and followed by a 5-minute cooldown. While the training sessions are short, you may have to train several times a day to improve your cardiovascular fitness.
As a rule of thumb, your steady running sessions should incorporate several 180-degree turns, allowing you to pivot faster and maximise your shuttle speed.
In addition to HIIT and running, you should also incorporate other aerobic activities into your workouts, such as swimming, cycling, or cross-training. Although the police fitness test is running-based, you must build up leg muscles.
How to Pass the Police Fitness Test: 6 Tips and Tricks
HIIT and running training make you sweat, which means that you’re losing fluids. Keep a water bottle or energizing drink at hand at all times and make sure to hydrate properly before, during, and after each session.
2. Don’t Overwork Yourself
When you first start training for the police fitness test, focus on building strength and endurance during shorter sessions. Overworking yourself could be detrimental to your purpose.
3. Don’t Wait Until the Last Moment
No matter how physically fit you are, start training for the test in advance. You should allow for at least six weeks of dedicated training before attending the assessments.
4. Always Warm Up
Never start working out without stretching or doing some other form of light physical activity first. Skipping warm-up could result in muscle strains.
5. Balance Your Workouts
The police fitness test involves a lot of running, but you have to pass a strength assessment too. Incorporate strength exercises in your routine, including crunches and push-ups.
6. The Correct Footwear
Wearing comfortable shoes is key to a proper workout. If you need good footwear for policing, please try police discount offers. They offer discounts on shoes and footwear for the whole Police Community at competitive prices.
Down to You
The police fitness test may sound intimidating, but proper training and wearing the correct footwear can help you pass both assessments on the first attempt. When training, keep in mind that you don’t need to conquer the athlete-of-the-year title. As long as your endurance and physical strength are in top condition, passing the test should be child’s play.
- About Police Force Testing in the UK
- ABout the 20m shuttle run "Bleep" test
- Fitness testing for other law enforcement agencies
- Fitness Testing for Sports