Navy prepares for single round of rated fitness and boards assessment in 2022

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The Navy said it would complete a fitness assessment cycle in 2022 – a departure from the traditional two cycles conducted each year – and begin marking forearm planks.

The Navy attributed the single cycle to the COVID-19 pandemic and delays in the deployment of the Physical Readiness Information Management System 2, which commanders will use to record the results of physical readiness tests.

“Given the foreseeable conditions to include the continuing pandemic, deployment of PRIMS-2 and validation of modalities, there will be only one PFA cycle for calendar year 2022,” a new naval administrative message said. “All medically licensed mariners must participate in the CY2022 Fitness Assessment Cycle (PFA).”

The PFA 2022 cycle will run from April 1 to September 30.

A key change sailors can expect for the 2022 PFA cycle is that board scores will count for the first time. Although the boards were included in the 2021 PFA cycle, it was for recording purposes only and they were not factored into the overall score, the Navy said.

This means Sailors in 2022 will receive scores for forearm boards, push-ups and cardio events, including a 2,000-yard row that was introduced in 2021 as an option for Sailors.

The Navy previously unveiled its standards for the forearm board and rowing events in November 2020.

Sailors between the ages of 17 and 19 will receive an outstanding score if they reach a maximum of 3:40 minutes for the plank event, as directed. Exceptional scoring times are reduced by five seconds for each subsequent age group. These standards for all age groups are the same for men and women.

Sailors are allowed to shake from a muscle spasm while completing the forearm plank – as long as they maintain proper form. The timed event will stop if the sailor lowers his head towards the hands, fails to maintain a 90 degree angle at the elbows, or receives more than two form corrections, among other things.

Although the Navy typically conducts the ATP every two years, the COVID-19 pandemic has prompted the Navy to forgo the tradition when it comes to fitness testing. For example, the service postponed and ultimately canceled conducting assessments in 2020, starting in March. Testing resumed in July 2021 as part of a single PFA cycle for the year.

A side effect of the single PFA cycle is that the service is unable to grant exemptions to sailors who have achieved excellent or better overall performance in 2021. The Navy said these exemptions can only resume when service performs a biannual PFA cycle.


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