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    Message to editorial staff, AFT

    This is to the editiorial staff at AFT,

    Over the past few years, your paper has run articles blasting the Air Force fitness program. You call upon leaders to allow members with bigger waists to pass, you did a body fat experiment that you claimed proves the DoD is wrong with their taping guidance. Ironically, the only AF member you tested would have failed both anyway. It's time that you stop relying on people reaching out to you with horror stories...go and see for yourself.

    I challenge you to take a look at our program from the inside before you come to such conclusions. Here's what I challenge you with.

    Contact your nearest AF Base and ask permission to watch how our PT Tests are conducted. Pick the last three duty days of any calendar month (FACs are full), avoid any other time of the month because you will be wasting your time, and send a reporter to the FAC for the entire day(s). Here's what your mission would be:

    1. Count the number of AF members who test during the period
    2. Count the number who show up on a profile and capture their exempted components
    3. Watch the A/C tests of each member (this requires you send a female reporter too)
    4. Watch the P/U and S/U portion and watch how some do their pushups and situps...check their form against AFI guidance
    5. Evaluate our "highly trained" PTLs who oversea the tests and watch how they count each rep.
    6. Watch the 1.5 mile run and evaluate your thoughts on those running the required distance. Don't be surprised if you see people walking during the run.
    7. Since only 2 in 100 fail the test according to AF stats, I doubt you will see anyone fail, but if you do see an alarming spike in failures, it would be interesting for you to report what you see to AF leadership.

    Bottom line, this is what you will notice: 3 in 10 will be on a profile, will come in and get taped, then leave the facility, 1 in 10 will be on a profile where they come in and get taped, and then do p/u or s/u, but no cardio. 4 in 10 will take the entire test and pass, 2 in 10 will score below an 80 and/or fail the assessment.

    During the A/C measurements you will notice how our PTLs may have trouble finding the iliac crest of some of our member's hip bones. I think you will be grossed out when you see this process. Not everyone who fails the waist measurement are professional bodybuilders like some want you to think.

    I think you will be shocked at what you discover.

    Oh, one more thing, talk to the FAC staff and PTLs and report on what they see...I'm sure it would make for some fantastic reporting.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    FROM AF.MIL

    Michael R

    I currently work at a FAC and have failed almost one hundred people, of those guess how many failed due to their muscular build? Not even one. In addition, I have only known one person in my whole career that failed because their waist was too big from body building. Most of the arguments here are either from people that don't get 90's due to their waist (body builders) or because they've failed a AC measurement simply because they are fat. If you're in the Air Force and your fat, FIX IT OR MOVE ON. Stop blaming the Air Force for your lack of exercise, put down the Twinkies and get off the couch. Physical Fitness is a standard for you to maintain. If you think that because you have seventeen years in the service you should be allowed to look nasty in your uniform then you're just ignorant. The Air Force isn't here to alter its needs to fit you, plain and simple.

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    Senior Member RS6405's Avatar
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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Standards, I respect your pride and belief in the military system and the DoD rules and regulations. I am sure most of the examples you cite are true (fat vs body builders).

    However, I wonder how many old school service members (& their families) rolled their eyes at the notion that the DoD can never be wrong? That is a pretty tall order.

    Fitness requirements have been in the USAF for over 50 years. While my first hand knowledge on the subject is pretty dated, I cannot help but see similarities between the way it once was and how it is now.

    I know that my father was forced to take high blood pressure medicine for 10 years because of USAF standards failed to take into account the body God and genetics gave him. He was one of the tallest members in the Air Force during his time at 6'9. He had a size 18 shoe, hands nearly twice the size of some members, and the bone structure to match. (He grew to that size a year after joining).

    A regular blood pressure cuff was too small to accurately gage his BP, so, like I said, for 10 years he had to take BP meds. (I wonder what that did to his body?). They also gave him hell for not matching the fitness standards (mainly the waist measurement).

    Well, that was until a genius took into account his actual body structure. After using a larger cuff, it was discovered that his BP was normal. Also taking his height-weight ratio into account and using that ratio to his waist, he was well within fit standards.

    Of course, they AF may not now allow members who, after joining, grow beyond the maximum height requirements to stay in the service. Yet, I believe the same standard could apply when comparing the tallest allowable member compared to the shortest allowable member.

    Just my two cents on cookie cutter concepts.

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    Senior Member AJBIGJ's Avatar
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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Quote Originally Posted by RS6405 View Post
    Standards, I respect your pride and belief in the military system and the DoD rules and regulations. I am sure most of the examples you cite are true (fat vs body builders).

    However, I wonder how many old school service members (& their families) rolled their eyes at the notion that the DoD can never be wrong? That is a pretty tall order.

    Fitness requirements have been in the USAF for over 50 years. While my first hand knowledge on the subject is pretty dated, I cannot help but see similarities between the way it once was and how it is now.

    I know that my father was forced to take high blood pressure medicine for 10 years because of USAF standards failed to take into account the body God and genetics gave him. He was one of the tallest members in the Air Force during his time at 6'9. He had a size 18 shoe, hands nearly twice the size of some members, and the bone structure to match. (He grew to that size a year after joining).

    A regular blood pressure cuff was too small to accurately gage his BP, so, like I said, for 10 years he had to take BP meds. (I wonder what that did to his body?). They also gave him hell for not matching the fitness standards (mainly the waist measurement).

    Well, that was until a genius took into account his actual body structure. After using a larger cuff, it was discovered that his BP was normal. Also taking his height-weight ratio into account and using that ratio to his waist, he was well within fit standards.

    Of course, they AF may not now allow members who, after joining, grow beyond the maximum height requirements to stay in the service. Yet, I believe the same standard could apply when comparing the tallest allowable member compared to the shortest allowable member.

    Just my two cents on cookie cutter concepts.
    Yeah, this is one of those concepts they will never truly get right. For the Navy side at least, the standards pretty much change every time a new MCPON comes into place. I understand the concept in abstract, essentially we're collectively trying to get a better ROI by not sending a bunch of heart attack patients to the VA after retirement. Is it properly executed? Well, if I had that level of Medical Expertise I would be a whole lot busier making a whole lot more money in the process. I know the AF side of the house has their very strong opinions on the subject. I think of this issue as one of those things you just basically deal with what comes, at least we know it's an open book test, the book just happens to have a lot of revisions.
    "The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first." ~ Thomas Jefferson

    It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood.
    James Madison

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    Senior Member UH1FE's Avatar
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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Highly trained PTL's? That's a joke right? More like just enough to make it seem like we trained them.

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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Quote Originally Posted by UH1FE View Post
    Highly trained PTL's? That's a joke right? More like just enough to make it seem like we trained them.
    You know what I'm talking about...AFT needs to see it for themselves.

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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    I would like to propose a different test that I think would show more valuable results.

    Bring in 10 PTLs that perform tests on people. Bring in 10 personnel to be tested "waist only". Have each PTL perform the waist measurment on each of the 10 people. Last step: Explain why there is a variance in results.

    Just to keep it really fair, include different genders and builds. Some tubby, some not. Some high hip bones, some low.

    Out of 10 PTLs how many measurements do you think would match on paper?

    This is the REAL problem with the tape test.
    Advice from JD2780:

    "don't post angry"

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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Quote Originally Posted by 20+Years View Post
    I would like to propose a different test that I think would show more valuable results.

    Bring in 10 PTLs that perform tests on people. Bring in 10 personnel to be tested "waist only". Have each PTL perform the waist measurment on each of the 10 people. Last step: Explain why there is a variance in results.

    Just to keep it really fair, include different genders and builds. Some tubby, some not. Some high hip bones, some low.

    Out of 10 PTLs how many measurements do you think would match on paper?

    This is the REAL problem with the tape test.
    I think the real problem is that we don't have enough training on proper nutrition.

    That crowd of people who claim they fail the tape test because they are body builders are in denial about being fat.

    They might lift weights and even have big biceps, but everyone I've ever seen who claimed that has a big roll of fat around their waist.

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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Quote Originally Posted by Absinthe Anecdote View Post
    I think the real problem is that we don't have enough training on proper nutrition.

    That crowd of people who claim they fail the tape test because they are body builders are in denial about being fat.

    They might lift weights and even have big biceps, but everyone I've ever seen who claimed that has a big roll of fat around their waist.
    That's what I have observed over the past few years as well...where are these rock star athletes that are failing the tape but maxing everything else? I have yet to see one.

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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Quote Originally Posted by 20+Years View Post
    I would like to propose a different test that I think would show more valuable results.

    Bring in 10 PTLs that perform tests on people. Bring in 10 personnel to be tested "waist only". Have each PTL perform the waist measurment on each of the 10 people. Last step: Explain why there is a variance in results.

    Just to keep it really fair, include different genders and builds. Some tubby, some not. Some high hip bones, some low.

    Out of 10 PTLs how many measurements do you think would match on paper?

    This is the REAL problem with the tape test.
    The issue is how you measure someone who is large and in charge. Like I said before, those people who you CAN'T find the hip bone because they are that big. I could care less about measuring people 35" or less...the problem lies measuring those that are 40" around or females that are 36" around. There are many big women coming back to the unit with 30" waist measurements but have BMIs in the 30's...not adding up. What are they wrapping the tape around? Their thighs?

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    Re: Message to editorial staff, AFT

    Quote Originally Posted by StandardsAMust View Post
    The issue is how you measure someone who is large and in charge. Like I said before, those people who you CAN'T find the hip bone because they are that big. I could care less about measuring people 35" or less...the problem lies measuring those that are 40" around or females that are 36" around. There are many big women coming back to the unit with 30" waist measurements but have BMIs in the 30's...not adding up. What are they wrapping the tape around? Their thighs?
    Let's say that's true, if passing is 39.499999 and failing is 39.5, then getting it right is of the utmost importance. It doesn't matter if YOU think anyone with a 39.x waist is a disgusting fatbody; the Air Force says otherwise. Inconsistency in measurements is a problem under the current system.

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