Importance of Physical Readiness Training

Table of Content

Physical Readiness Training is essential in ensuring our bodies remain fit and ready for the nation’s demands. Nevertheless, soldiers often face injuries that impede their ability to train normally. Nonetheless, there are specialized exercises and plans created to assist injured soldiers in their recovery, playing a vital role in their rehabilitation process.

According to FM 7-22, Chapter 6, Section 6-5, pg 90, it is stated that after 14 days without conducting any Physical Readiness Training (PRT), there will be notable decreases in strength, endurance, and mobility. This applies to all individuals, including injured soldiers, emphasizing the significance of PRT beyond what may initially seem. Additionally, it is crucial to engage in injury-specific exercises to prevent exacerbation of any issues. The reconditioning process for soldiers on a physical profile encompasses two different levels.

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Both level one and level two reconditioning programs are available for soldiers to aid in their recovery. Level one reconditioning takes place in a gym setting, allowing soldiers to optimize their workouts while avoiding further harm to injured areas. On the other hand, level two reconditioning is specifically designed for soldiers who are either on profile or recovering from physical profiles.

The reconditioning training schedule outlined in FM 7-22, Chapter 6, Table 6-1 on page 97 includes a range of exercises such as the preparation drill, hip stability drill, core exercises, and the recovery drill. In addition to these exercises, there are also various exercise machines that can be utilized by soldiers on profile. These machines include the treadmill, stair stepper, elliptical machine, recumbent cycle, upright cycle, and arm ergometer.

Soldiers can use these exercises to target specific muscle groups and enhance endurance training without worsening injuries. The duration of the exercises may range from 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the intensity level. To effectively decrease fat, it is advised to engage in these workouts at a lower intensity for around 60 minutes. Moreover, core workouts can still be done while on profile and focus on core muscles efficiently.

The bent leg raise and back bridge are exercises one and three respectively. The side bridge and quadruplex are exercises two and four respectively. If unable to hold the exercise, individuals should briefly change position and then resume the designated exercise position. Soldiers with upper body injuries on profile should concentrate on lower body exercises.

There are various lower body exercises that can be done in different positions, such as the leg press, modified leg press, single leg curls, and modified leg curls. To strengthen the muscles in the back of the lower legs, one can perform heel raises. For individuals with lower body injuries, the chest press is a beneficial exercise to enhance strength in the arms, shoulders, and chest.

The chest press exercise has a modified version with a smaller range of motion, but it is performed the same way as the regular chest press. It is advised to incorporate this variation in workouts to enhance strength until achieving full range of motion. Another exercise, known as the seated row, focuses on arm and back muscles. The modified version of this exercise requires keeping arms straight and performing it with a considerably reduced range of motion.

Exercise 5B should be modified to match the resistance of the injured side. This modified version is called single arm, single row and it resembles the seated row exercise but is performed with only one arm. The modified over arm press provides less resistance and a limited range of motion compared to the standard over arm press. Similarly, the single arm press can also be done one arm at a time.

The lateral pull down is a beneficial exercise that targets the arms and back muscles. To modify this exercise, it can be performed with a straight arm or one arm only, leading to reduced resistance and limited range of motion. As you advance, gradually increase both the resistance and range of motion. Likewise, the lateral arm raise is an effective way to strengthen the shoulders and neck muscles.

The modified version involves using only one arm to reduce resistance and make it suitable for the injured side. The range of motion can also be reduced. Tricep extensions are utilized to strengthen the triceps, and the modified version should be performed in the same manner, except without fully extending the elbows. This exercise can also be done with a single arm to limit stress on the injured side.

To increase strength in the biceps while controlling resistance and range of motion on the injured side, modifications can be made to bicep curls. Similarly, trunk flexion can be used to strengthen abdominal muscles, with lower body profiles for soldiers (except those with hip injuries). For the modified version, lower range of motion and lower weights should be used, and movements should be within the soldier’s comfort zone. Trunk extension can also be done to strengthen the lower back, with the same modifications in weight and range of motion as trunk flexion.

The FM 7-22, Chapter 6, Table 6-4, pg 157 provides guidance on transitioning from walking to running. It recommends a progression over three weeks. In the first week, soldiers should walk for four minutes and jog for two minutes, repeating this sequence five times to reach a total of 30 minutes of exercise. In the second week, they should reduce the walking time to three minutes and increase the jogging time to three minutes. Again, this should be repeated five times for a total of 30 minutes. Finally, during the third week, soldiers are encouraged to walk for two minutes and jog for four minutes – repeating this cycle five times over a period of 30 minutes.

In their fourth week of training, soldiers are taught to switch between walking for one minute and jogging for four minutes. They repeat this alternating pattern five times, totaling 30 minutes of exercise. In the fifth week, the soldiers are instructed to run every other day with the aim of eventually achieving a continuous 30-minute run.

If soldiers suffer from knee injuries, their recommended progression includes various drills such as preparation drill, conditioning drill, military movement drill, push-up and sit-up drill, climbing drill, sustained running, and speed running. To aid in recovery, it is important to perform the recovery drill with reduced range of motion and fewer repetitions.

For the conditioning drill, it is recommended to bear the majority of the body weight on the arms. To lower the intensity of movements, the military movement drill should be reduced from 25 to 15 yards. It is not necessary to maintain normal tempos. During push-ups, a six-point position is allowed, and for sit-ups, shoulders can be used to move in and out of the supine position.

Assisting soldiers in the climbing drill is important, and in the recovery drill, soldiers can use their hands as necessary. Modified versions of exercises are available to prevent injuries while still allowing soldiers to participate in PRT and be prepared for national duties. The collaboration between soldiers and leaders ensures that standards are fully achieved and our unit remains trained and ready.

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Importance of Physical Readiness Training. (2018, Feb 24). Retrieved from

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