From The Straits Times Archives: Recent changes to the IPPT

SINGAPORE - New performance standards for the Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT) have been announced by the Ministry of Defence. 

Under the changes for the military fitness test, which kick in from April 1, servicemen have to run faster and collect more points in order to get silver and gold awards to qualify for cash incentives. 

The latest round of tweaks follow a three-month trial of the new IPPT last September. The new three-station IPPT will replace the current five-station physical fitness test of chin-ups, sit-ups, standing broad jump, 4x10m shuttle and a 2.4km run. 

The 4x10m shuttle run, standing broad jump and chin-up stations will be scrapped and push-ups would be added, as part of moves to make the IPPT less painful for NSmen, especially those who failed it and were sent for remedial training.

Here are some stories from the Straits Times archives that highlight the recent changes to the IPPT.

Better IPPT scores under new format

Four national servicemen trying out the new Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT) format which is reduced to three stations and aims to be more manageable and motivational. -- PHOTO: NEW PAPER FILE

This article was first published on Feb 26, 2015. 

Soldiers, sailors and airmen who underwent trials for the revised IPPT format bettered their previous performances in the current test, according to Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen. 

Writing in his Facebook post, Dr Ng said they did more sit-ups and ran faster, with some shaving as much as two minutes in their runs.

Dr Ng said the result showed that the new IPPT format motivates NSmen to "max out" for each station to collect as many points as possible. "This is good because more will likely pass the new IPPT," he added. 

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Tougher penalties for NSmen who skip IPPT

Operationally ready servicemen at Maju Camp demonstrating the new Individual Physical Proficiency Test comprising push-ups, sit-ups and a 2.4km run – similar to those used by other militaries. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 

This article was first published on Oct 31, 2014. 

The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) in January cracked the whip on conscripted soldiers who repeatedly skip the mandatory military fitness test.  

Instead of its usual penalty of a $100 fine, it told the Straits Times in October that they will be confined to camp, made to exercise and handed a monetary fine. The move, it said, was aimed at getting operationally ready national servicemen (NSmen) fit. 

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NSmen get to do IPPT training at 'own time own target' with fitness-tracking devices 

A physical instructor (right) demonstrates exercising on stationary cycling in the gym as part of the IPPT Preparatory Training (IPT) programme in Maju Camp on 8 September 2014. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

This article was first published on Sept 18, 2014. 

As part of a four-month trial in September, NSmen were able to do their physical fitness training at "own time own target", to borrow the popular army slang. 

Instead of being supervised by fitness instructors during physical training classes, NSmen were given free rein to decide how they want to train for their Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT), by using fitness-tracking devices like Fitbit and mobile phone apps to monitor their progress. 

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Trial to let NSmen train for IPPT in public parks closer to home 

Participants at the inaugural IPT-in-the-park (IPPT Preparatory Training) as part of a four-month training session at Bishan Park. -- PHOTO: NEW PAPER FILE 

This article was first published on Sept 11, 2014. 

The SAF also brought fitness classes closer to the homes and workplaces of NSmen.

That meant that unfit citizen soldiers no longer had to trek to far-flung corners of the island to train for their IPPT. 

As part of a four-month trial, training sessions were held in the evenings at the Promontory @ Marina Bay, the Co-curricular Activity Branch in Bukit Timah, Bishan Park, Jurong Central Park and Punggol Park. 

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Here's how to do a proper push-up for the new IPPT, as demonstrated by Cyberpioneer 

This article was first published on Sept 2, 2014.

Just what constitutes a proper push-up in the revised Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT), which kicks in from April 1?

Cyberpioneer, the online version of the Singapore Armed Forces' monthly magazine Pioneer, released a video demonstrating the proper technique in performing a push-up.

In the video, a fitness specialist shares a few pointers, such as placing your hands shoulder-width apart and straightening your back.

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Revised 3-station IPPT kicks in April 1 next year

NS men training at the compound of MAJU camp in Clementi. -- PHOTO: ST FILE 

This article was first published on Jul 24, 2014. 

The revised IPPT test which kicks in April 1 was announced in July last year. The new format will also apply to Home Team officers. 

Under the new test, servicemen will have to clear only three stations: the 2.4km run, sit-up and push-up stations. Army chief Perry Lim gave details of the new test, saying that the simpler format will allow servicemen to train "in his own time without the need for specialised equipment".

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