1, 2, 3, or 4. Specifically, 1 indicates a high level of medical fitness for the system being rated, 2 indicates some medical condition or physical defect that may require some activity limitations, 3 signifies one or more medical conditions or physical defects that may require significant limitations, and 4 signifies one or more medical conditions or physical defects of such severity that performance of military duty must be drastically limited. There are few military jobs that permit a 3 or 4. Thus, for those applying for military service, a 3 or 4 on any factor usually means a medical disqualification. Specific definitions of each number for each system can be found in Army Regulation 40-501, February 1, 2005.
Physical Fitness Testing The only physical fitness test currently given at the MEPS is the Air Force Strength Test. Recently AMSARA initiated an experiment to test recruit motivation and strength using the five-minute step test, the number of push-ups performed in one minute, and the Air Force Strength Test. This battery is called the Assessment of Recruit Motivation and Strength (ARMS). The hypotheses are that these tests will (1) identify those with undisclosed medical conditions or low motivation and (2) predict injury and attrition in basic training and advanced individual training. This experiment is currently being conducted at seven MEPS with Army applicants. Its intended use is to screen in applicants who were disqualified on body fat percentage or other fitness measures.
For most new recruits, there is a gap between the time when they sign their enlistment contract and the time when they actually travel to basic training. This gap—which can last up to one year in the case of a high school senior—is referred to as the delayed entry program (DEP)—(see Appendix 2-A for further detail). Some physical fitness testing and training is provided in the DEP. The Army is experimenting with the 1 1 1 test (1 mile run, 1 minute of push-ups, and 1 minute of sit-ups). There are criteria values the recruit is expected to reach before shipping to basic training. The Marine Corps also has an active program of physical fitness in the DEP, and the Air Force and the Navy provide information designed to encourage those in the DEP to maintain or improve their physical conditioning.
Technology may be reducing the physical demands of some civilian and military jobs. However, the DoD and the Services direct that every