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Department of the Air Force moves Physical Fitness Assessments to April 2021, removes waist measurement from composite score permanently

To continue minimizing close contact among personnel during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and ensure units and personnel are fully ready to resume, physical fitness testing has been delayed from October to January 2021. Testing in January will proceed without obtaining waist, height and weight measurements.

U.S. Air Force Basic Military Training trainee, Chris-Ann Wilmoth, 37th Training Wing Detachment 5, Flight 564, participates in a physical training session at Keesler Air Force Base, Miss., July 1, 2020. To continue minimizing close contact among personnel during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and ensure units and personnel are fully ready to resume, physical fitness testing has been delayed from October to January and is now further delayed to April 2021. Testing in April will proceed without obtaining the waist measurement component. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kemberly Groue)

WASHINGTON (AFNS) --

The Department of the Air Force announced physical fitness assessments will now resume April 2021 and will no longer include the waist measurement component.

To ensure social distancing practices remain in place during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and to give Airmen and Space Professionals time to prepare, testing was delayed from October to January and is now further delayed to April.

While the waist measurement is permanently removed from the assessment, height and weight measurements will resume October 2021.

“We trust that our Airmen understand the standard of good physical health practices and we are all finding innovative ways to stay fit,” said Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown, Jr. “We also trust that leaders will take the appropriate steps to keep their Airmen safe while making every effort to provide fitness options during the pandemic.”

The DoD requires services to maintain a physical fitness assessment program and a body composition program. Over time and based on feedback, the waist measurement portion of the test was determined to be a better fit within the separate body composition program, officials said. The conditions associated with COVID-19 provided a good opportunity to make this adjustment permanent. The department will release additional information once we determine how we will measure body composition.

Fitness assessment cells, fitness center staff, physical training leaders and members performing fitness assessments will adhere to physical distancing protocols and other local precautions as determined by installation commanders once assessments resume.

Commanders may delay official fitness assessments beyond April 2021 if necessary, based on the recommendation of local public health officials, the continuation of closed fitness centers and extended state-wide restriction of movement and gatherings.

At this time, Space Professionals will adhere to the physical fitness policy of the Department of the Air Force. Eventually, the U.S. Space Force will develop its own physical fitness assessment.

Airmen and Space Professionals may determine their next fitness assessment due date by visiting the Official Physical Assessment Due Date Matrix on myPers which will be updated and available Dec. 8. Fitness assessment due dates will primarily depend on the date and score of the last official test.

“Originally, we hoped to resume testing by January 2021,” said Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force JoAnne S. Bass. “However, based on the number of cases nationwide, the right thing to do is focus on keeping our Airmen and their families safe. Delaying and reevaluating the PT test is the best option for our people.”

The test will still consist of a 1.5 mile run, 1 minute of pushups and 1 minute of situps. However, the composite score will be calculated with full points for the waist measurement portion until system changes can be made.

Department leaders are also looking to reevaluate certain testing criteria moving forward.

“Along with removing the waist measurement, we are also exploring alternative strength and cardio components to our current Air Force fitness assessment,” Brown said. “We believe these potential test structure changes will impact Airmen in a positive way and help with a holistic approach to health and fitness standards.”

For more information, Airmen and Space Professionals should contact their fitness assessment cells and visit the COVID-19 Fitness Guidance page on myPers.

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