APFT Improvement


The three day a week PT that is required for all MSIIIs and all scholarship MSIIs and MSIs is designed to ensure all cadets can pass an Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) with a minimum 180 points with a minimum 60% in each event.  This goal falls far short of the goal of a minimum 270 with a minimum 90% in each event by the end of the MSIII year.  To achieve this goal the cadet needs to do PT twice a week in addition to the required PT.


Cadets will already be participating in platoon PT on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  To allow for recovery cadets should take at least two days off each week, however for continued improvement the cadets should not take more than two days off in a row.  To meet both of these a recommended schedule is to perform APFT improvement PT either Tuesday or Thursday, taking the other day off for recovery, and again either Saturday or Sunday, again taking the other day off for recovery.

Pushup Improvement

There are several exercises other than the pushup that will give cadets an edge during the APFT.  Here is a recommended technique for planning a PU improvement PT session.

  1. Pick 3 or 4 of the exercises from the list below.
  2. Perform 5 minutes of stretching.
  3. Perform a 1 minute set of each exercise without a break between sets
  4. Take a 2-3 minute rest (or perform a sit up improvement set).
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 two times.
  6. Perform 5 minutes of stretching.

Here is a list of recommended PU improvement exercises to pick from.

  1. Close Arm (Diamond) Pushups
  2. Wide Arm Pushups
  3.  Dive bomber Pushups
  4. Pushup Pulses
  5. Shoulder Dips
  6. Uneven Pushups
  7. Tubing Pushups
  8. Chest Extensions with Tubing
  9. Chest Extensions with Tubing
  10. Bicep Extensions with Tubing

Sit Up Improvement

One method of improving in the sit up portion of the APFT is by using 6, 7, or 8 minute abs.  Depending on fitness level of the cadet, perform the chosen number minutes of continuous abdominal work, not taking any breaks between sets until the entire 6, 7, or 8 minute iteration is complete.  Choose 4-8 of the exercises listed below, use the entire time, and do not take any breaks between sets.  The following is a list of exercises to choose from.

  1. Half sit ups
  2. Full sit ups
  3. Flutter kicks
  4. Leg Lifts
  5. Leg Raise Pulses
  6. 6” hold
  7. Leg Spreaders
  8. Dying Cockroach
  9. Cradle Crunch
  10. Oblique Crunch
  11. Supine Bicycle
  12. Plank

2-Mile Run Improvement

The only way to run better is to run, and often!  Try to avoid running exactly 2 miles when preparing for a 2-Mile Run.  A combination of longer and shorter runs will give the cadet more benefit in the end.  A fast 1-2 mile run will build up speed, while a slower 2-3 mile or occasional 4-6 mile run will build up the endurance that will carry the cadet through that most difficult second mile of the APFT run.  Another technique is to break up a larger run into a series of quick ¼ or ½ mile runs, with a 1-2 minute break between each (or a set of PU or SU improvement)