Let's get this straight from the start. Every police academy is different. The standards one agency has may be completely different than the standards of another agency of an agency city or town.
The first step in preparing for the Academy is to reach out to the agency you are interested in joining and learning from them first hand what to expect.
Find an officer that is fresh out of the academy and ask them all the questions you have.
Common questions to ask include:
It is best to do research about the requirements of the Academy well before the Academy starts.
We recommend starting your training for the Academy at least 12 weeks out.
The more information you know about the Academy, the better you will be able to structure your fitness training leading up to the start.
Almost all Academies will have a PT test standard. Many require the recruits to pass the PT test before the Academy starts, while some require the recruits must pass the test at the end of the Academy.
Again, research and ask the agency beforehand.
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The most common testing standards include:
Passing standards are different based on the agency and many agencies may have different tests in their standard.
The Cooper Institute recommends that recruits complete:
Females are often required to hit 40-50th percentile for the men in push-ups of their specific age group.
These standards are not hard to achieve. They are meant to be the bare minimum. We recommend that you train well above the standard. If you are not there yet, no worries, it's time to start now!
Your training program should not just prepare you for the Academy PT test. It should prepare you for the Academy itself. Training to max your push ups, sit ups, and 1.5 mile run is very different than training to do well in the Academy,
Often the academy involves running and doing calisthenics on multiple days in a row. If you are trying to train for the test, you may only need to train 2-3 days a week. That approach would set you up for failure when you entered into the Academy.
We recommend that you start training 3x a week and slow build-up to training 5x a week over a 12 week period.
Start with basic calesthnics, running, and core work. Over the 12 week period incorporate more strength training to prepare your body for the police academy.
A sample workout might look like this:
Barbell Rows 3 sets of 10
Walking Lunges 3 sets of 20 steps
Rotator Cuff Strengthening 3 sets of 15 reps
As many rounds in 10 minutes of:
5 Push ups
10 Sit Ups
15 Air Squats
Rest 5-10 minutes
2 sets of 400-800m runs with 2-5 minutes between runs
Some days you should just run and take a break from strength work and some days you should lift weights and just take a break from running.
There is no right or wrong way to train. Just make sure that your training will look like the training you will be doing day to day in the Academy.
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Outside of physical training, mindset is key for the Academy. Here is a quick list of tips to set your mindset to be best prepared for the academy.
Thanks for reading!
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