Of Fitness and Standards

The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) unveiled a new Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT) standard earlier this July, making way for the 32 year old IPPT, consisting of Pull-ups, Standing Broad -Jump (SBJ), Sit-Up, 4x10m Shuttle Run and 2.4km run. The new standard will just make up of the Push-up, Sit-up and 2.4km Run. No doubt that the IPPT MK II will make life much easier for the folks eligible for IPPT for those struggling in SBJ and Pull-Ups, but do remember, thousands has passed the former standards with ease, and those struggling eventually do well with some effort. Sometime in 2008 or so, Mindef responded to queries on the purpose of the SBJ defending the static long jump is to judge the soldier’s lower body’s ‘explosive’ power which is crucial especially in combat situations.

The IPPT Mk II is based on numerous overseas armed forces, including the United States Army, Australia and New Zealand Defence Forces and the Israeli Defence Force. HOWEVER, in 2014, the IDF abolished the push ups and sit-up and replaced it with Pull-ups and Dips, together with a 3km run. The United States military also looked into revamping their fitness tests, by including the SBJ and other cross-training styled exercises like kettle bell lifts, tire dragging etc. Canadian Defence Force has also employed the cross fit styled fitness test, consisting of sand-bag lifts and drag, loaded shuttles and prone shuttles (similar to shuttle runs, only you start-off in prone position).

So while Singapore is looking into a ‘more effective” IPPT, other war fighting countries are already moving away from the three stations to a more elaborate and IPPT Mk I styled exercise.

Below is a sample of various fitness standards across the world.


1) Pull – Ups (not Chin – Ups) – the maximum amount one is capable of making regardless of the time.

2) Dips – the maximum amount one is capable of making regardless of the time. Arms must decend 90 degress.

3) 3000 meter run (1.86 miles)


1) Push-Up – 44 push-ups in two minutes

2) Sit- Up – 50 in two minutes

3) 2.4km – in 14.5 minutes


1) Pull ups
2) Push ups – 60 seconds
3) Sit ups – 60 seconds
4) Superman – 60 seconds
5) Standing long jump (SBJ)
6) 200m swimming test, no time limit. 


1) 3km run – 15 min
2) Pull up – 4
3) Push up – 30
4) Bulgarian lunge – 45 with 22 kg on the back
5) Sit ups – 40
6) Back hyperext. – 18
7) 8km with 22kg backpack – 62 min

So one can wonder if in the bid to make NS more engaging, the IPPT standards are simplified and ‘lowered’ to make more pass? Let me know what you think, if you haven’t polled on my earlier IPPT post, click here.



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