ACFT Grading Scale – Army Combat Fitness Test

The Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT) marks a significant departure from previous approaches to evaluating the physical readiness of United States Army soldiers. This comprehensive assessment encompasses various fitness elements, such as strength, endurance, and agility, emphasizing practical, real-world applications. By embracing the ACFT, the Army manifests its commitment to arming soldiers with the skills needed for excellence in the intricate and ever-changing landscape of modern warfare. This introduction provides insight into the Army’s evolving fitness evaluation strategy, underscoring its dedication to nurturing versatile and proficient military personnel.

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Gender Age

Maximum Deadlift (lbs.)

lbs. points

Standing Power Throw (m)

m points

Hand-Release Push-Ups (reps)

reps points

Sprint Drag Carry (m:s)

m s points

Plank (m:s)

m s points

2 Mile Run (m:s)

m s points

About Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT)

The ACFT serves as a thorough physical fitness test crafted to gauge soldiers’ physical readiness, surpassing the complexity of the former Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT), utilized for over four decades. Introduced in 2019, the ACFT aims to better prepare soldiers for combat’s physical demands and mitigate the risk of injuries.

Comprising six events, the ACFT evaluates diverse aspects of physical fitness, including muscular strength, endurance, power, agility, and speed. These events encompass:

  1. Deadlift: Measures lower body and back strength.
  2. Standing Power Throw: Evaluates upper body power.
  3. Hand-Release Push-Up: Assesses upper body and core strength.
  4. Sprint-Drag-Carry: Measures total body strength, endurance, and agility.
  5. Leg Tuck: Assesses upper body and core strength.
  6. Two-Mile Run: Evaluates cardiovascular endurance.

Each event employs a standardized grading scale, awarding points based on performance, with minimum passing scores varying by age and gender. This transition to the ACFT reflects the Army’s dedication to a more demanding yet accurate assessment of soldiers’ physical readiness for combat.

Changes to the Army ACFT Grading Scale

The ACFT’s grading scale is poised for changes to enhance relevance and effectiveness in measuring soldiers’ physical fitness. Shifting from the current three-tier system (Gold, Silver, and Bronze), the new pass/fail system necessitates meeting a minimum standard in each event for test success.

Minimum standards align with the physical demands of the Army’s most challenging roles, demanding a higher standard compared to the existing three-tier grading system. Additionally, the revised grading system incorporates a body composition component. Soldiers not meeting the Army’s body composition standards must engage in a weight loss program to pass the test.

These adjustments aim to ensure the ACFT remains a precise gauge of soldiers’ physical fitness and a robust tool for assessing combat readiness.

Implications for Soldiers and Leaders

The revamped Army ACFT Grading Scale carries significant implications for soldiers and leaders alike within the military.

For Soldiers: The new grading scale necessitates a broader focus on physical fitness skills. The ACFT intensifies emphasis on strength, power, endurance, and agility. Soldiers must cultivate muscular strength and power through exercises like deadlifts, squats, and bench presses. Simultaneously, improvements in endurance, agility, and overall fitness are vital, achievable through activities like running, swimming, and rucking.

For Leaders: Leaders face the task of adapting training programs to comprehensively evaluate soldiers. Ensuring soldiers’ preparedness involves incorporating exercises targeting each of the six ACFT events. Leaders must scrutinize soldiers’ performance in each event, identify areas for improvement, and develop personalized training plans.

The new grading scale transforms strong ACFT performance into a pivotal factor for career advancement within the military. Leaders must instill urgency and dedication among soldiers to meet these elevated standards.

In essence, the new ACFT grading scale signifies a substantial change for soldiers and leaders. While enhancing soldiers’ preparedness for modern warfare, it demands concerted efforts and dedication from both soldiers and leaders to attain success.

Conclusion and Recommendations

In conclusion, the proposed Army ACFT Grading Scale signifies a marked improvement over the current system. By introducing gender- and age-neutral standards, the new grading scale ensures uniformity in physical fitness expectations across soldiers, irrespective of demographic characteristics. The tiered system acknowledges and rewards soldiers for their efforts, even if they fall short of the top tier standards.

However, implementing the new grading scale requires substantial resources and training. Adequate time and resources are imperative for soldiers to prepare for the heightened standards. Additionally, educating and training Army leadership on the new grading scale is crucial for a seamless transition.

To facilitate a smooth shift, it is recommended that the Army initiates the implementation of the new grading scale well in advance of the deadline. This proactive approach allows soldiers and leadership to familiarize themselves with the standards and make necessary adjustments to training programs.

Moreover, considering additional resources and support for soldiers struggling to meet the new standards is prudent. This might include access to specialized training programs or personalized fitness plans.

Overall, the ACFT grading scale represents a positive stride in ensuring the Army sustains a high level of physical fitness and readiness. With effective implementation and support, the new grading scale holds the potential to significantly benefit soldiers and the Army as a whole.

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