Women's Health Portal

 Deployment and Military Women's Fitness

Last Updated: April 01, 2021
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‚ÄčArmy Fitness and Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT)

What does military fitness mean? The Army measures fitness in two ways to meet Department of Defense requirements: (1) your Body CompositionExternal Link (based on height/weight or Body Fat standards) and (2) passing the ACFT at one of 3 levels of gender-neutral standardsExternal Link (gold, silver, black) to ensure you are assigned a position that does not exceed your physical capability.

What is the ACFT?External Link The ACFT includes 6 events (dead lift, standing power throw, hand-release push up, sprint-drag-carry, leg tuck hold, and 2-mile run). It officially replaces the 3 event (push up, sit up, 2-mile run) Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) as of Oct 2021External Link. Alternatives include 2-minute plankExternal Link in place of leg tuck.

How can I safely train when pregnant or after pregnancy? The Army's Pregnancy Postpartum Physical Training (P3T) program provides female Soldiers a standardized exercise regimen to safely maintain fitness and includes alternatives to ACFT training until it is safe to return to routine Soldier physical training.

How can I avoid injury when training for the new ACFT? ALL Soldiers should very gradually learn proper forms of the new tests before increasing weights, speeds, or repetitions. Read this article and train safely!


Deployment Health

Are you ready? In addition to Army fitness requirements, Soldiers need to be injury free and mentally healthy. The annual Health of the Force (HoF) Reports provides statistics on health conditions that hinder readiness.

How do I maintain hygiene in the field? Promoting Women's Health in Austere Environments.

What were your exposures? Periodic Environments and Occupational Monitoring Summaries (POEMS) summarize conditions at various deployment sites. If you have concerns about possible exposures to chemical warfare agents or burn pits, see this site for information and registries.


Injury Prevention for Military Women

How can you avoid injury? Women may be more prone to certain injuries such as stress fractures - low weight, poor nutrition, and poor fitness can increase risk. Read here for tips to reduce your risk.