CFAV Fitness


#41

[quote=“Perry Mason” post=1915][quote=“Gunner” post=1912]Bounties aren’t paid purely because of fitness standards but as part of achieving an annual ‘certificate of efficiency’.

[Edited to add] The bounty also represents the fact that Reserves don’t get a pension (unless things have changed) and that they don’t get the same allowances as a regular (unless they’re in theatre).[/quote]

Neither do we… and some of us are awfully efficient dontha know. ;)[/quote]
Absolutely. But, IIRC a certificate of efficiency includes (but is not limited to):

  1. Passing annual CCS testing in first aid, post-attack recce and NBC (incl RTF)

  2. Passing three different fitness tests annually (RAFFT, BFT and ROFA)

  3. Passing WHT’s on different wpn systems every 6 months

  4. Completing 2 weeks continuous training

  5. Attending 12 weekend training events

  6. Attending one night a week

  7. Passing an annual personal weapons test on the range (APWT - but I think the name has changed)

There might be more but I’m unsure of the remainder.


#42

Simply, you are a role model to the teenagers you baby sit and as for the bad representation, if you were over weight and were representing a gym or a fitness business, this would be an issue. As the ACO well knows they are the blue foot print of the RAF, the RAF has a similar representation to up hold much like a gym.

I don’t see how it would be much of an issue to change it. The RN has just added in a strength test to the fitness test. It is to be taken for the 1st year but not pass or fail and then after that it is pass or fail. That is on a legal basis and if the ACO wanted to it could be brought in for the VR(T) for sure, not sure for SNCOs.

I do love some of the objections, yes you can get inured in phys but you can also get injured walking down the stairs. Its about the individual as well and the way you do the phys.

A fitness test would not ‘get rid’ of fat people as I always stand by the principle that physic does not represent fitness. It would just make some individuals who are not ideal role models (as mentioned by others) out of selection or service.

As for cadets being unfit, that is true there are some. As mentioned already there are considerations and I think it should continue of tying in phys to the classification and even cadet promotion scales.

I would almost say the phys for staff and cadets of the ACO should be similar to that of the Police or Fire Service. Quite rightly it does not need to be the same level as the forces but it should still be modelled on it.

You say that some wings are under bourn with staff… then surely these staff should be capable of running all activities, surly this would partly enable this.


#43

I believe it differs slightly between the different “arms” of the reserves, and even within the TA its self - for example professional/specialist units have different criteria to infantry.

Again, theoretically I’m all for it. Practically I think it’ll be more trouble for the organisation (as a whole) than it is worth.

My comment about a training bounty was (slightly) facecious, but then why not? If we are bought more into line with “proper” reservists then why not?

And for the record, I think the time/effort put in by many CFAVs is at least as much as many TA/AUX - different yes.

For me, it comes back to the chestnut that I have seen plenty of heffalump-like members of the reserves and regular forces… if they can’t sort them out, what hope is there of “sorting out” CFAVs? I think there are bigger fish to fry (like sorting out Ultilearn for starters…)


#44

i think a very basic, as mentioned before more along the lines of the Police, would be a good thing as it would mean more staff are able to assist with more activities such as sport, fieldcraft and AT rather then (as i know in the wing i support) seeing always the same old faces who end up having to cut about doing more work just because they happen to be fit!!

As for the 2 hours the regs get you lot are having a laugh!! I ve not been in a postion to do that for over 4 years!!

If the reserves can fit it in why cant you guys? My brother is a TA Infantry Sgt who works monday to friday (which can also be all hours of the day) then does 2 (if not more) weekends a month which also requires him to prep for during the week! Now if can remain Infantry fit in the time frame nobody has an excuse.

I fully support cadets doing some sort of phys in line with classifactions and promotions and having pushing this for years!! I found it shocking that my wing NCO courses involve zero phys and are only 2 days long!

I’m not saying you all should be up to regular or even reservisit fitness but as been said, you are the repersentatives of your parent service in your area and the old military term of Fit To Lead


#45

We’re not talking about discrimination based on age and\or gender, we’re talking about introducing annual fitness tests for all age groups.

So long as everyone is treated the same (ie: having to undertake the testing) and there are staged fitness tests (ie: to accommodate age ranges), then any discrimination would be very hard to prove. If the appropriate changes were made to the TCOS of ACO staff, then how could they take the Corps to a tribunal?[/quote]

Ok, ok. Lets play this scenario out.

We have a graduated standard which takes into account of age. Fine. Someone doesn’t pass, what then?[/quote]
The Cmdt’s letter is invoked and they a) don’t wear uniform, b) lose seniority and c) get put on a remedial fitness programme to give them the best possible chance of passing the test.[/quote]

I poop you not, if they were to introduce a fitness test that was deemed unnecessary in an employment court they would lose. The police have been forced to drop the fitness test for public order trained officers to 6.3 on the bleep test as according a court the old test (500M run in full kit with a long shield) was discriminatory!

I would like to see an annual fitness test for BELA’S/ML and anyone DSing a course with a fitness test for cadets (ACLC etc) should be able to pass a slightly harder test.


#46

Please explain to me, how a court found the introduction of a fitness test, ‘discriminatory’? Is fitness a protected characteristic now alongside, age, disability, race, gender, ethnic origin, religion etc?

The last time I assessed Equality & Diversity qualifications it wasn’t.

It’s not for the courts to decide whether the introduction of something is ‘uneccessary’, it’s about ensuring that the introduction doesn’t discriminate against any specific group. As I said before, if ALL age ranges are included and reasonable adjustments made for those ranges, then no discrimination has occurred.

Your case sounds to me that one standard was introduced for all ages and I agree that that in itself, may have triggered a complaint under age discrimination.


#47

Once upon a time in a galaxy far, far away, the TA and RAuxAF were considered to be a hobby but they still had to meet certain fitness requirements…[/quote]

I have no intetion of serving regular of reserves. The TA and RAuxF are serving so I agree a fitness level should be maintained for them.


#48

Please explain to me, how a court found the introduction of a fitness test, ‘discriminatory’? Is fitness a protected characteristic now alongside, age, disability, race, gender, ethnic origin, religion etc?

The last time I assessed Equality & Diversity qualifications it wasn’t.

It’s not for the courts to decide whether the introduction of something is ‘uneccessary’, it’s about ensuring that the introduction doesn’t discriminate against any specific group. As I said before, if ALL age ranges are included and reasonable adjustments made for those ranges, then no discrimination has occurred.

Your case sounds to me that one standard was introduced for all ages and I agree that that in itself, may have triggered a complaint under age discrimination.[/quote]

My understanding was that it was of sexual discrimination, the standard put into place for public order officers (ie the ability to run about in full kit with a shield) was deemed to be unjustified so a competency related fitness test (level 6.3 on a bleep test) was substituted) was enforced instead. (Although its still 1 size fits all)

My point was that any fitness test imposed upon CFAV’s would following this logic need to be appropriate to what we do and beyond “fat people look gash” their is very limited argument that would convince a court that I can see. (Again taking into account that a court was unconvinced by the argument that people who spend 8 hours having bricks and petrol bombs fly brown at them in Tottenham should be able to run 500M in full kit)


#49

Sexual discrimination? Couldn’t the poor Wopsies run 500m in kit with a shield? It’s not exactly a marathon is it?

They want to try doing 1.5 miles in full IPE with a rubber face wellie, helmet, webbing and weapon!


#50

Nobody here can deny that fats present a bad corporate image though. I want my children to be around people setting a good example of life choices, not some obese blimp.


#51

[quote=“Gunner” post=1927]Sexual discrimination? Couldn’t the poor Wopsies run 500m in kit with a shield? It’s not exactly a marathon is it?

They want to try doing 1.5 miles in full IPE with a rubber face wellie, helmet, webbing and weapon![/quote]

I think it was doing it in 2 minutes 45 seconds carrying a 5’6 shield. I would expect its the same court ordered thinking that makes a height restriction for males racial discrimination.

I’m not opposed to a fitness test per-say I just point out that fitness and weight aren’t mutually exclusive and that any test would end up so low as to be ineffective.


#52

[quote=“Gunner” post=1916][quote=“Perry Mason” post=1915][quote=“Gunner” post=1912]Bounties aren’t paid purely because of fitness standards but as part of achieving an annual ‘certificate of efficiency’.

[Edited to add] The bounty also represents the fact that Reserves don’t get a pension (unless things have changed) and that they don’t get the same allowances as a regular (unless they’re in theatre).[/quote]

Neither do we… and some of us are awfully efficient dontha know. ;)[/quote][/quote]
RFPS brings pension entitlements (pro-rata) to both PTVR and FTRS personnel. Definitely not any relevance to mainstream CFAVs, nor is bounty an aspect. Only RFPS dimension might be for any new- world former RAFR(CC) that are now commissioned in the VRT.

Oh yes. That is certainly the case for members of the deployable reserve forces of the Crown ( I suppose we’d better not refer to them as ‘active reserves’ in this thread, as it will just cause confusion.

[quote]
2. Passing three different fitness tests annually (RAFFT, BFT and ROFA)[/quote]
RAFFT was upped to 6 monthly, and female pressups converted to standard. Multi-standard (particularly BFT) was/is Aux Regt only, but may now also include certain other core ‘FP’ personnel, for as long as that continues

[quote]
3. Passing WHT’s on different wpn systems every 6 months[/quote]
Again, multi-system would tend to be Aux Regt (eg also LSW, PPK and ords). Most personnel (ie ORs and JOs) need to pass full WHTs including tested application of fire on the range/dismounted SA trainer with the L85/IW, and SOs are meant to qual on the SLP (I think they can elect to use the L85?). Marksmanship is welcome, but not mandatory :wink: .

[quote]
4. Completing 2 weeks continuous training[/quote]
Actually now 16 days Annual Continuous Training, which confusingly can now be done (with agreement, and only for certain branches/trades) as two seperate segments of training…not back in my day!

This is not totally the case. Nationally-recruiting squadrons do not mandate the ‘one night a week’ requirement, nor do they apply the 50mile radius HTD. And for MTDs, the absolute minimum for maintaining eligibililty a CO’s Certificate of Efficiency is 12 days (weekends or otherwise), though that would be extremely unusual. Some can be recorded as quarter-days from the ‘one night per week’, aggregated. There are also certain compulsory parades (AFI/RAFFT/Meds/appraisals/leg briefings)

[quote]
7. Passing an annual personal weapons test on the range (APWT - but I think the name has changed)[/quote]
See my above, believe it’s still an APWT.

Someone that’s still a serving PTVR, such as tango_lima, may be able to adjust some elements of the above comments, but I’m confident it’s close to still being 90% + right.

But back to the OP…

It is an interesting proposal that is difficult to entirely discount, or to apply, in equal measure.

Consider a few parallels. ACF/CCF(Army) Officers are (currently) members of the TA. Do they, or other uniformed Army CFAVs, undertake formal fitness testing? I’m predicting a negative answer. Even MPGS don’t do fitness test, for them it’s BMI only.

The comments re US CAP uniformed personnel being forbidden from wearing Air Force pattern uniform if they breach the weight/build guidlines is one serious route to follow.

And what ‘letter’ is being referred to?? Are we all to ‘fit the fit-curve’? If so, bring it on…but only if it does not result in volunteers being lost, and/or Cadets suffering.

wilf_san


#53

Simply put: the armed forces have an OPERATIONAL need to maintain fitness. Corporate image is an aside. If their staff become injured through phys they have all the support and more required to return them to active duty. The cadet forces only have a corporate image requirement because their patent service doesn’t exist in the community nowadays. There is zero support, other than state support, if someone becomes injured through phys.

Remember, most of us work a 38-42 hour week, then another 5-15 hours for cadet work. Adding another 2 hours cumulative on top of that, at the time where the family re looking for your support is almost a non star,tee for the majority of staff and frankly I know some hefty people who work more, out in more, have more enthusiasm and knowledge than the racing snakes.


#54

We’re not talking about discrimination based on age and\or gender, we’re talking about introducing annual fitness tests for all age groups.

So long as everyone is treated the same (ie: having to undertake the testing) and there are staged fitness tests (ie: to accommodate age ranges), then any discrimination would be very hard to prove. If the appropriate changes were made to the TCOS of ACO staff, then how could they take the Corps to a tribunal?[/quote]

Ok, ok. Lets play this scenario out.

We have a graduated standard which takes into account of age. Fine. Someone doesn’t pass, what then?[/quote]
The Cmdt’s letter is invoked and they a) don’t wear uniform, b) lose seniority and c) get put on a remedial fitness programme to give them the best possible chance of passing the test.[/quote]

Or, you can kiss goodbye to that member of staff! When you have a volunteer organisation run by volunteers there are certain niceties that need to be followed if you wish to retain those staff.

And frankly, the cadet forces as a whole (ACF/ATC/CCF/SCC) cannot afford to not retain those staff.


#55

No-one, not you, me or anyone else in this Corps is indispensable. There will always be someone to take our place.

"There Is No Indispensable Man"
by Saxon N. White Kessinger 1959

Sometime when you’re feeling important;
Sometime when your ego’s in bloom
Sometime when you take it for granted
You’re the best qualified man in the room,

Sometime when you feel that your going
Would leave an unfillable hole,
Just follow these simple instructions
And see how they humble your soul;

Take a bucket and fill it with water,
Put your hand in it up to the wrist,
Pull it out and the hole that’s remaining
Is a measure of how you will be missed.

You can splash all you wish when you enter,
You may stir up the water galore,
But stop and you’ll find that in no time
It looks quite the same as before.

The moral of this quaint example
Is do just the best that you can,
Be proud of yourself but remember,
There’s no indispensable man.


#56

Having given the subject a little more thought last night (whilst stuffing my fat face with a carvery) I came to a couple of conclusions

  1. There is no current fitness test and there is likely never to be
  2. Fat people are people too!! I’d hazard a guess that if you took all of the “fatties” out of the corps tomorrow that the organisation would grind to a halt (this includes the HQAC ones).
  3. If there was a fitness test - I’d make sure I passed it (I think I’d be close enough now), as I personally enjoy the activities I get to do with the ACO.
  4. The idea of a classification based PT Programme for the cadets is a brilliant idea and I think that should form part of our syllabus going forward. However the staff would need to be suitably “fit” to deliver this!
  5. I really like pies!

#57

Actually you are totally wrong Gunner. There is a serious crisis in places over a lack of VRT and suitable persons to become OCs. Putting in 1 year experienced Plt Off isn’t a replacement it’s a doomed exercise. Look wider (pardon ze pun) and a lot of experience and qualification holders could be wiped out. So, at the moment, some people are indispensable.


#58

Above all this suggestion is purely administrative and indicative that as an organisation we are increasingly being run as an admin exercise. I doubt none of the potential practicalities have even been considered. They may make an order of it, but until they start providing the lions share of my income, it will only ever be a request.

I think another factor is the shrinking RAF and the need for some quarters of the RAF to find something to run, given the ACO is fast becoming, if not already there, larger than the host organisation, in terms of overall numbers, I think they are looking our way to keep a job.

I think the arguments and similarities trotted out about regular, aux, TA and so on are facile and purile. If you joined the aux/TA then because the regulars have shrunk so dramatically there are now contractural obligations to be operation ready, which we don’t.

There is a need to ensure that the people actually in the paid employ in the RAF ALL meet this, before even attempting to introduce this, as one person in the ACO treated in any way differently to some contractually obliged and the can of worms would be well and truly opened. That’s where the discrimination and equality kicks in, not just via the acts of Parliament. I think that if this went to court on discrimination, then our employer would need to show documentary evidence that not being physically fit (in a banal fitness test sense) affects what we are obliged to do. I don’t think it does. No one has to or is obliged to take kids out on FMS, AT etc, they do that because they have an intrinsic personal interest.
Bringing in something like this (ie purely based on aesthetics) is IMO atypical of management papering over cracks, either hiding from real problems or facing the facts that it can’t deal with them and wants something that may present a quick win. I think that they need to concentrate all efforts on the systems around classifications, as the tinkering combined with ineptitude has created a mess which is affecting the progress and achievement of cadets, without whom, none of us, including retired senior officers getting to play at being in the RAF in their twilight years, would be here.

[quote=“40b” post=1936]Or, you can kiss goodbye to that member of staff! When you have a volunteer organisation run by volunteers there are certain niceties that need to be followed if you wish to retain those staff.

And frankly, the cadet forces as a whole (ACF/ATC/CCF/SCC) cannot afford to not retain those staff.[/quote]
I don’t think, looking locally, that the Corps can afford to alienate staff, who may not fit the photogenic ideal. As I say being a CI would be interesting, as I wouldn’t feel obliged to do what I currently do or do with cadets out of a sense of duty because I am an Officer. I’m getting to the point (and I’m not alone) where I am getting irritated with the constant posturing, posing and ineptitude displayed by HQAC and their underlings, they are not my paymaster yet seem to expect more of my own time with no recompense for the effort. I put up with it at work because they deposit a nice little sum in my bank balance each month. If the ATC want to deposit more than than my employer, I’d gladly take all their BS.

Why should we be doing compulsory physical activity with schoolkids? Schools should be providing ample opportunity with sufficient equipment and trained and qualified staff, not an after school club, like the ATC, without such staff and or equipment on every sqn. I didn’t join the ATC as a 13 year old to run around and do gym stuff and I doubt they do now. Don’t come it with the running aspect doesn’t need any kit, as running is about as dull as it gets, but you would need trained and qualified staff if you were to introduce it as a compulsory element, we get by now, because whatever people do, they do as an extra and it’s nearly always a game of some sort. But then wouldn’t making it complsory be a school like aspect, that Mr Moulds was so keen to get away from?


#59

I’d argue that point with you though! If they’re a 21 yr old Plt Off then I’d agree but if they’re experienced and have a solid background as a CI or SNCO then its not a doomed exercise!

Hey I was a Plt Off for 5 months before I got a command and 5 years later I’d like to think I run a decent Sqn!


#60

ah yes, the ‘there’s a great host of willing, able, competant, non-walting potential members of ACO staff out there who would join, but are put off by the ACO having fat people in it’ delusion.

there aren’t.

all that would happen is that some fat/unfit people, some of whom are not a good example to the cadets, and some of whom look like a space hopper painted blue, but who are, broadly* fit enough for the jobs they do within the ACO, would be kicked out, and some who don’t look like a space hopper painted blue, and are certainly fit enough to do their jobs within the ACO, would just say ‘sod it, i’m not interested in going through even more hoops to provide a service to other people, for free’ and walk away.

and nobody would replace them.

the ACO is a youth organisation who’s objective is to provide as many kids as possible with the cadet experience. it does not exist to provide the RAF with a footprint, and it does not exist to provide sad people with an ego boost by allowing them to be ‘military’ without the inconvenience of going to Afghanistan (or other sandy toilet of political choice).

so far, i have only seen two logical justications for fitness (not a test, or a standard, just for being fit (ish)) of ACO staff that actually has any bearing on the cadet experience - the rest is just about the ego and self-image of the posters involved.

*see what i did there…?