How to Prepare for the Navy Physical Fitness Test
The Navy Physical Fitness Test (PFT) is designed to measure the fitness level of those who want to join the United States Navy. The PFT consists of three different exercises: forearm plank, push-ups, and 1.5-mile run. Candidates are given a score for each exercise, and the total score is used to determine whether or not they are qualified to join the Navy.
What is in the Navy physical readiness test?
The Navy Physical Readiness Test (PRT) is designed to evaluate a sailor’s fitness level and physical readiness for duty. The test consists of four elements: a 1.5-mile run, forearm plank and push-ups, sailors must complete the 1.5-mile run in less than 12 minutes, 30 seconds; the forearm plank and the push-ups in 2 minutes .Each exercise is worth a certain number of points, and sailors must score at least a minimum passing score on each exercise to pass the PRT.
The PRT is conducted twice a year for active duty sailors, and once a year for reserve sailors. Sailors who fail to meet the minimum passing score on any of the PRT exercises will be placed on a fitness enhancement program (FEP). The FEP is designed to help sailors improve their physical fitness so that they can successfully pass the PRT.
Sailors who are physically fit and able to meet the demands of military service are essential to the success of the Navy. The PRT is one way to ensure that sailors are physically ready to meet the challenges of naval service.
NOTE: As of 2020, the Navy will make a few changes in the physical fitness assessment (PFA). Sailors no longer will be doing crunches for two minutes, and there will be a change to the way push-ups are done. Also, on the option list, a bike or rowing test can replace the running test. More details on the standards of passing and maxing these new changes will be later updated with new charts. Crunches are now plank pose, and push-ups are cadence push-ups. Source https://www.military.com/military-fitness/navy-fitness-requirements/navy-basic-training-pft
Training for the Navy physical readiness test
When you’re setting up a training plan for the Navy physical readiness test it’s important to understand what you need to work on to improve your fitness for the demands of the test. The hardest part for many people will be the 1.5 mile run. This is because building endurance usually takes the most amount of time and effort to see improvements.
When it comes to push ups and sit ups you can do sets of push ups during the day without breaking sweat. Becoming skilled at push ups is all about doing them regularly. I recommend working up to doing 100 push ups a day. Get a base line of fitness by doing as many push ups as you can in a 2 minute period. Once you become more advanced at doing push ups try adding the 100 push up finisher to the end of your weight training workouts.
The forearm plank exercise works the entire core. To perform well at the forearm plank exercise you’ll need to practice this exercise. To improve your ability to do the forearm plank test you should be practicing plank daily. I love using the plank stealth board which allows you to play games while doing the plank.
Here’s our guide on how to hold a longer plank.
Improving cardiovascular fitness is a little more complex. This requires more time and volume or work. Good runners may run 40-60 miles per week to get a good 5k time this can take 6-8 hours of work per week.
Improving your running score
Ways to improve your running score. If you’re like me I like to preform well at fitness tests. My goal for most fitness tests is to get a maximum score. If you want to improve your performance for the running test it’s important to work on your aerobic fitness. People that study sports medicine recommend to do a combination of easy running and hard running. Training should be done using the 80/20 method. This uses the formula of doing 80% of your runs at an easy conversational pace. The only 20% of your runs should be focused on higher intensity efforts such as 5k pace intervals, tempo runs or mile repeats.
You can use some of the tips from our blog how to run a faster 5k to help you hit a higher running score.
Improving push up score
Muscular endurance tests are resistance exercises with lots of reps. Muscular endurance is tested during the push ups test. The best way to improve your push up test is to do a lot of push ups. You can also focus on doing muscular endurance with weights. Using a bench press is a great way to ad a few extra reps to your push up score. Once I am able to do over 50 push ups without stoping I may pre exhaust my shoulders or triceps before doing sets of maximal push ups.
Set a baseline of push ups by doing the a maximal push up test. Practice push ups weekly and try beat that score every week. Which time you’ll be crushing your push up score.
Muscular strength can help with your push ups. Improving muscular strength in the upper body can be done by doing heavy bench press and shoulder press. Focus on 3-5 reps with about 3-5 minutes of rest between sets.
Improving your forearm plank
Just like with the push up improving your forearm plank is all about practice. Doing a few sets of planks a day ranging from 30-90 seconds will help you improve your forearm plank time. It’s important to do a baseline assessment of your planking fitness. So make sure to get those numbers and do a assessment weekly to see if you’re making progress.
Scoring for the Navy physical readiness test
The navy physical fitness test (PFT) is comprised of three events, each worth a possible 100 points. The first event is the 1.5-mile run, which must be completed in under 12:30 minutes to earn the full 100 points. The next event is curl-ups, where participants must complete as many sit-ups as possible in two minutes. Up to 80 curl-ups are worth 100 points, and each additional curl-up beyond that earns an additional point. The third event is push-ups, where participants must complete as many push-ups as possible in two minutes. Up to 70 push-ups are worth 100 points, and each additional push-up beyond that earns an additional point. Finally, the fourth event is the 300-meter sprint, which must be completed in under 75 seconds to earn the full 100 points. Scoring for the navy PT test is based on these four events, with participants earning a possible total of 400 points.
Maximum scores for Males 20-24 are 87 push-ups, 3:20 min plank and 8:30 min 1.5 mile run, or cardio alternative of 7:05 km row or 6:30 500 yd swim.
Minimum passing score for Males 20-24 are 42 push-ups, 1:20 min plank and 13:30 min 1.5 mile run.
Tips on how to pass the test
Here are some tips on how to prepare for the Navy Physical Fitness Test:
Start slow and gradually increase your intensity. If you try to do too much too soon, you will likely injure yourself or become so discouraged that you give up entirely.
Listen to your body and rest when you need to. Pushing yourself too hard will only set you back in your training.
Find a workout buddy or join a group class to help keep you motivated. It’s always more fun to exercise with someone else, and you’ll be more likely to stick with it if you have someone waiting for you at the gym.
Create a realistic training schedule and stick to it. Make sure to allow for rest days and adjust as needed based on how your body is feeling.
Focus on form over speed. In order to get the most out of your workouts and avoid injury, it is important to focus on proper form rather than trying to go as fast as possible.
The Navy Physical Fitness Test is an important part of the application process for those who want to join the United States Navy. By following these tips, you can make sure that you are fully prepared for the test and ready to take your place in the Navy!
If you need some help with your Navy fitness test try a personal training session.