Physical FitnessPhysical fitness comprises two related concepts: general fitness (a state of health and well-being) and specific fitness (a task-oriented definition based on the ability to perform specificaspects of sports or occupations). Physical fitness is generally achieved through correct nutrition,exercise, and enough rest.Earlier, fitness was commonly defined as the capacity to carry out the day’s activities withoutundue fatigue. However, as automation increased leisure time, changes in lifestyles following theindustrial revolution rendered this definition insufficient.These days, physical fitness is considered a measure of the body’s ability to function efficientlyand effectively in work and leisure activities, to be healthy, to resist hypokinetic diseases, and tomeet emergency situations.FitnessThe Presidents Council on Physical Fitness and Sports—a study group sponsored by thegovernment of the United States—declines to offer a simple definition of physical fitness.Instead, it developed the following chart: Health related Skill related Sports • Metabolic • Body composition • Agility • Team sport • Morphological • Cardiovascular • Balance • Individual sport • Bone integrity fitness • Coordination • Lifetime • Flexibility • Power • Other • Muscular • Speed • Other endurance • Reaction time • Muscle strength • OtherA comprehensive fitness program tailored to an individual will probably focus on one or morespecific skills, and on age- or health-related needs such as bone health.Many sources also cite mental, social and emotional health as an important part of overallfitness. This is often presented in textbooks as a triangle made up of three points, which representphysical, emotional, and mental fitness.Physical fitness can also prevent or treat many chronic health conditions brought on by unhealthylifestyle or aging. Working out can also help people sleep better. To stay healthy it is importantto engage in physical activity.
TrainingSpecific or task-oriented fitness is a persons ability to perform in a specific activity with areasonable efficiency: for example, sports or military service. Specific training prepares athletesto perform well in their sports.Examples are: • 400 m sprint: in a sprint the athlete must be trained to work anaerobically throughout the race. • Marathon: in this case the athlete must be trained to work aerobically and their endurance must be built-up to a maximum. • Many fire fighters and police officers undergo regular fitness testing to determine if they are capable of the physically demanding tasks required of the job. • Members of the United States Army and Army National Guard must be able to pass the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT).**************************************************Physical Fitness ComponentsMore and more the term physical fitness seems to be misunderstood. Some people may assumethat just because someone is not morbidly obese or drastically under weight, that they are prettyfit. Nothing could be farther from the truth. As a culture we seem to have lost touch with all thedifferent facets of being truly healthy and fit. Experts go by a set of 5 components to determinephysical fitness.The first component that goes into determining physical fitness is cardiovascular health. Thecardiovascular system, which is also referred to as the circulatory system, includes your heartand blood vessels. Many problems can arise from poor cardiovascular health. Heart disease(which is the largest cause of death in North America), blocked arteries, high blood pressure,heart attack, embolisms and strokes are all cardiovascular problems. To be physically fit a personmust maintain a healthy supply of oxygen to the organs via the circulatory system.
The second component is muscular strength. This refers to the amount of force that a muscle iscapable of exerting against a marked amount of resistance. The muscles of your body areresponsible for your movements. Your muscular strength can be built by resistance exercises thatwill build muscle mass and overall strength to the body. Stronger muscles aid your body in doingstrenuous activity.The third component is that of muscular endurance. Muscular endurance deals with the ability tomaintain muscular activity for a marked period of time. Poor muscle endurance can hindersimple tasks as being able to walk very far or climb a flight of stairs.The fourth component of being physically fit is flexibility. This refers to a person’s ability tomove their muscles and joints to their fullest range of motion. When muscles are not stretchedthey become stiff and atrophied.The final component is body composition. This deals with the ration of fat to lean tissue in thebody. And overabundance of fat in a body leads to many diseases and health problems that canbe not only hindering, but fatal.Along with these 5 physical components, doctors can also look at 6 skills related components.The first is speed. This refers to how fast a person can move from one point to another. The nextcomponent is agility. Agility can be summed up as the ability to change direction and type ofmotion quickly.Third is a person’s balance. Balance is maintaining a steady upright position during stasis andmovement. The fourth component is coordination. This is how well ones movement is integratedwith the senses. Reaction time is the fifth component. This is measured by how long it takes forthe body to react with movement. The final component is power. This refers to the ability toperform strength requiring activity at an accelerated pace.The road to overall health and well being are paved with these components of physical fitness.The benefits of maintaining health in these areas prevent diseases and other debilitating medicalconditions that can lead to a loss of the overall quality of life and in many cases death. Overallphysical fitness will aid in daily life, helping you to have more energy, feel better, breathe easierand have full range of motion with no stiffness or pain.
Being physically fit also helps you to better enjoy and excel when participating in sportingactivities that an out of shape person would not be able to partake in. These basic components arethe basis for you to live your life to the full potential your body is capable of.*****************Physical Fitness TestIn order to be accepted by any branch of the United States military or employed by the country’sfederal agency’s security, applicants must first successfully pass a physical fitness text to ensurethat potential soldiers and agents have the strength and endurance to defend their country.Each branch of the United States Military has its own criteria for passing these tests, some ofwhich are considerably more physically demanding than others. Each of the federal securityagencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Drug Enforcement Agency(DEA) have tests of their own that require an applicant to be in top shape, particularly forpositions that are located in the field. Here is an in depth look at what is expected for these testsand how to train for your physical fitness test properly.Regardless of which branch of the military you choose to enlist with or whether your duties willlie on the ground or shuffling papers, every soldier must begin by passing a fairly rigorousphysical fitness test. For soldiers who seek out glory in the Special Forces, the physical fitnesstests are often far more demanding.In the United States Army, new recruits are required to pass the necessary Army Physical FitnessTest, or AFTP, for their age and gender. Recruits must earn a total of 60 points or more based ontheir performance in completing a set number of push-ups and sit-ups, as well as the amount oftime that it takes them to complete a two mile run. In the case of males who are between 17-21years of age, a soldier must complete at least 42 push-ups, 53 sit-ups and a two-mile run in 15:54or less.In the United States Navy, all sailors must pass the Naval Physical Requirements Test, or PRT,to the standards associated with their age and gender. For example, a male who is between 20-24years of age must complete at least 50 curl ups, 42 push ups, and run a 1.5 mile course in 13:15or less. Sailors in this age bracket are also required to 500 yards in thirteen minutes or less.In the United States Air Force, a soldier must pass the requirements of the brand new Air Forcefitness program that consists of four separate components: body composition, push-ups, sit-upsand a 1.5-mile run. Again, the requirements are set on a sliding scale that takes age and genderinto consideration. For example, a male who is under 30 years of age must have a waistmeasurement of less than 39 inches, complete a 1.5-mile run in between the times of 13:15 and13:36, and perform both 33 push-ups and 42 sit-ups.
Physical Fitness Tests for Federal AgentsSimilarly, most employees of federal agencies such as the FBI must pass regular physical fitnesstests regardless of the nature of their job. In the FBI, the minimum requirements to pass the basicphysical fitness test are based on being able to earn 12 points or more during tests for maximumnumber of sit-ups an agent can complete in one minute, a timed 300-meter sprint, push-ups and atimed 1.5 mile run.For the DEA, a new employee must be able to meet the agency’s requirements for a two-milerun, 120-yard shuttle run, maximum sit-ups in two minutes and a test of push-ups without a timelimit.Even if you consider yourself to be in pretty good shape and workout regularly, you will stillneed to train for a six to twelve week period in order to ensure that you will pass your physicalfitness test without a problem. While new recruits are often whipped into shape during basictraining, every soldier will tell you that it is a big mistake to show up basic training without someserious preliminary training.Thankfully, these tests are quite easy to train for due to the fact that they are based on a smallhandful of tests. You can begin by simply test yourself before starting a training program to seewhere you currently stand. From there, it is simply a matter of scheduling daily and weekly goalsthat will have in shape to easily exceed your test requirements before the date of your test or firstday of boot camp.The Importance of Physical Fitness in Military and Security PositionsIt is no secret why the military and federal investigative agencies required their soldiers and staffto be in adequate shape. Unlike most civilian jobs, these careers require individuals to be able tosnap into physical action at a moments notice, and the difference between being able to performwell physically under stress can make the difference between the life and death of yourself andthose who are depending on you.By training well for your physical fitness test, you are doing more than fulfilling a jobrequirement. Instead, you are ensuring that you will be in the best shape possible if and whenyou are called into action.****************************
5 Components of Physical FitnessBy Peter SomervillePhysical fitness is the ability to function effectively throughout your workday, perform yourusual other activities and still have enough energy left over to handle any extra stresses oremergencies which may arise.The components of physical fitness are:* Cardiorespiratory (CR) endurance - the efficiency with which the body delivers oxygen andnutrients needed for muscular activity and transports waste products from the cells.* Muscular strength - the greatest amount of force a muscle or muscle group can exert in a singleeffort.* Muscular endurance - the ability of a muscle or muscle group to perform repeated movementswith a sub-maximal force for extended periods of times.* Flexibility - the ability to move the joints or any group of joints through an entire, normal rangeof motion.* Body composition - the percentage of body fat a person has in comparison to his or her totalbody mass.Improving the first three components of fitness listed above will have a positive impact on bodycomposition and will result in less fat. Excessive body fat detracts from the other fitnesscomponents, reduces performance, detracts from appearance, and negatively affects your health.Factors such as speed, agility, muscle power, eye-hand coordination, and eye-foot coordinationare classified as components of "motor" fitness. These factors most affect your athletic ability.Appropriate training can improve these factors within the limits of your potential. A sensibleweight loss and fitness program seeks to improve or maintain all the components of physical andmotor fitness through sound, progressive, mission specific physical training.Principles of ExerciseAdherence to certain basic exercise principles is important for developing an effective program.The same principles of exercise apply to everyone at all levels of physical training, from theOlympic-caliber athlete to the weekend jogger.These basic principles of exercise must be followed.Regularity
To achieve a training effect, you must exercise often. You should exercise each of the first fourfitness components at least three times a week. Infrequent exercise can do more harm than good.Regularity is also important in resting, sleeping, and following a sensible diet.ProgressionThe intensity (how hard) and/or duration (how long) of exercise must gradually increase toimprove the level of fitness.BalanceTo be effective, a program should include activities that address all the fitness components, sinceoveremphasizing any one of them may hurt the others.VarietyProviding a variety of activities reduces boredom and increases motivation and progress.SpecificityTraining must be geared toward specific goals. For example, people become better runners iftheir training emphasizes running. Although swimming is great exercise, it does not improve a 2-mile-run time as much as a running program does.RecoveryA hard day of training for a given component of fitness should be followed by an easier trainingday or rest day for that component and/or muscle group(s) to help permit recovery. Another wayto allow recovery is to alternate the muscle groups exercised every other day, especially whentraining for strength and/or muscle endurance.OverloadThe work load of each exercise session must exceed the normal demands placed on the body inorder to bring about a training effect.A personal fitness program can happen anywhere and at any age. Start off with a pair of NewBalance men’s walking shoes [http://www.best-walking-shoe.com/new-balance-mens-walking-shoes-mw558] and move on to the flagship New Balance 991 Running Shoes [http://www.best-walking-shoe.com/new-balance-w991-running-shoes] when the desire to do more kicks in.Never look back.******************************