Fitness

Physical Fitness Standards


The Irving Police Department, in recognizing the importance of physical fitness status for job performance, has established physical fitness standards for applicants. A validation study was conducted to determine what areas of physical fitness are important for doing the job of police officer and what level of fitness is necessary to perform the strenuous and essential functions of the job.

Applicants to the City of Irving Police Department are expected to meet the physical fitness test standards to be selected for the position of officer.


What Is Physical Fitness?


Physical fitness is having the physical readiness to perform the strenuous and critical physical tasks of the job. The physical fitness areas that have been determined to be the underlying factors for an officer's capabilities to do the job consist of five specific and different areas:

  • Aerobic Power or Cardiovascular Endurance 
    An efficient heart and cardiovascular system means a person can perform physical tasks over a sustained period of time. It is an important area for performing job tasks such as making foot pursuits and long-term use-of-force situations.
  • Anaerobic Power 
    The ability to make short intense bursts of effort is important when performing tasks such as short sprint pursuit situations.
  • Upper Body Muscular Endurance
    Having the ability to make repeated muscular contractions with the upper body without getting fatigued is important in many police force job tasks.
  • Leg Explosive Strength or Power
    The capability to jump with power and to make short intense bursts of effort are important when performing tasks such as jumping over obstacles and sprinting in pursuit situations.
  • Trunk or Abdominal Muscular Endurance
    The ability to make repeated muscular contractions with the abdominal area without becoming fatigued is important in many tasks involving lifting, pulling and dragging.
Other areas of physical fitness to include percent body fat and flexibility. Those areas are important for overall fitness; however, they have not been determined to be predictive of how well an individual can perform the duties of an officer.

Importance of Physical Fitness


First, physical fitness is important because the five physical fitness areas determine an individual's capability to do strenuous job tasks. Physical fitness is a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ).

Second, physical fitness is important because it helps minimize health risks for health problems such as heart disease, stroke and obesity - all of which can affect job performance capabilities.