The Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT) is a new definition of military fitness. It’s a dramatic departure from the Army’s previous fitness test, Basic Training APFT, which consisted of only a 2-minute sit-up test, a 2-minute sit-up test, and a 2-mile run. The new test consists of 6 events with which all types of fitness are to be tested: total body strength, explosiveness, strength endurance, functional fitness, grip and core strength as well as aerobic endurance.
If you are training for the ACFT and want to know how your performance at the six events meets the standards required to pass, this calculator will help you track your scores and progress.
A total of 60 points is required for soldiers in moderately physically demanding units or jobs. A score of 65 is required for “significant” physically demanding units or jobs. And a score of 70 is the minimum for soldiers in “heavy”
How do I train to pass the ACFT?
For most recruits, the ACFT requires a far more thorough and systematic training approach than the old test. It can be done without a gym, but if possible, it is definitely helpful to have strength training equipment available!
The best way to pass the test is not to keep passing it. In fact, this could cause your performance to degrade over time. A better approach is the way powerlifters train for meetings: they balance event-specific training with strategic “assistance” exercises to strengthen their weakest muscles – or in the case of ACFT, your weakest muscles or energy systems.
The best way to train for ACFT is a balanced approach that includes three types of workouts:
- Strength and muscle building
- Test practice
That’s the approach in Bodybuilding.com’s groundbreaking 8-week Combat Fit program: 8-week ACFT training plan.
In two four-week phases, you build a base of muscles and strength to drive through the strength-oriented parts of the test and at the same time drive your condition and aerobic endurance through the roof. It was designed by Nick Tumminello, an experienced personal trainer and strength trainer, and the NSCA Personal Trainer of the Year 2016.
This is a fitness test. So trust a fitness authority and build strength and endurance that will not only help you pass the test, but are also the best – and healthiest – soldier possible!
Try Combat Fit as part of your free 7-day BodyFit trial here.
What are the six ACFT fitness tests?
The test lasts between 51 and 54 minutes, and you will work hard for 34 to 37 minutes and rest for the other 17 minutes. The following is expected on the ACFT test day:
Deadlift with 3 RPM interception rod: Raise the maximum weight with good shape using a hexagonal bar called a “trap bar”. You will receive two attempts in five minutes, followed by a break of at least 2 minutes before the next event. Many interception rods have high handles, but luckily you use low handles with a normal barbell height. No dangerous bending of the spine allowed!
Standing power throw: Take a 10 pound. Medicine ball over your head and behind you for the maximum possible distance. You get three attempts: one practice throw, followed by two record throws. Then you have 3 minutes of rest.
Hand release push-up: Do as many push-ups with hand release as possible in 2 minutes. With each repetition, your chest must touch the floor and your hands must leave the floor. You can only rest in the top position. The burning and fighting during the last reps is extreme to say the least! You will welcome the 3 minute break at the end of this event.
Sprint drag carry: Perform a medley of sprints, drags and a 25m course. First, sprint from a belly start and touch the ground on the other side of the course. Then pull a 90-pound sledge backwards. Then mix laterally for 25 meters, followed by two 40 lb. Kettlebells for the same distance. You finish with a last sprint and then have at least 4 minutes to catch your breath. This is a serious challenge, especially after the push-up test has burned off.
Leg curl: Hang on a pole with a “pistol grip” with your hands on either side of the pole. Then raise your knees and touch your elbows. Simple enough, isn’t it? This is actually the event where most people fail the ACFT. So don’t overlook him in your training! You have a 5 minute break before the last event of the test.
2-mile run: Run two miles as fast as you can. This is the only holdover from the previous Army fitness test. You may still be holding your breath while sprinting drag carry. So expect it to feel more difficult than a normal 2-mile run.