Sunday, September 25, 2011

Your Grandfather Was Tougher Than You

Earlier this month, the Art of Manliness published an article about the Army Ground Forces Test -- the formal fitness test used by the U.S. Army during World War II. To whip soldiers into shape for combat, the Army had incorporated a physical development program into its basic training course, and beginning in 1942, participants were tested to determine the program's effectiveness.

The test included squat jumps, sit-ups, pull-ups, push-ups, and a 300 yard run. The emphasis was on functional fitness and giving American GI’s the strength, mobility, and endurance they would need to tackle real tasks on the battlefield.
In 1946, a Physical Training School was created at Fort Bragg with the mission of exploring how to take the goal of functional fitness farther. The training program developed at the school and the fitness test were codified in the 1946 edition of FM 21-20, the Army’s physical training manual.
Basically, Grandpa was doing CrossFit before it was cool.
Visit the Art of Manliness for details about the test's standards and scoring, and see how you match up. But one thing's for sure: The Army's current physical fitness standards aren't what they used to be.

[Previously: Too Fat For Fighting?]