Don't be Afraid of the Doctor

Australian Defence Fit

Before joining the Army branch of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) you will have to undergo some pre-employment medicals and tests. This is to ensure that you are fit and healthy to join a professional organisation that operates across the globe in some of the most hostile environments on earth. Conflict zone deployment puts huge amounts of stress on the body both physically and mentally, and so it's important to prepare yourself as much as possible before you join up. Mental training is something that develops over time throughout your military training; however, physical preparations can be made for long in advance. This simple guide will give you an overview of your physical fitness test and your medical examination prior to enlisting, as well as a few handy tips to help you to pass first time. 

Physical Fitness Test

This part of the pre-employment medicals is designed to test your body's strength and endurance, as well as your psychological determination. The Army demands that each man can perform 15 push-ups, 45 sit-ups and reach a score of 7.5 on the bleep test. For females this drops to 8 push-ups, but remains at 45 sit-ups and 7.5 on the bleep test. Push-ups should be performed correctly without any bend in the hips, with hands placed shoulder width apart and the elbows reaching a 90-degree angle at the bottom and fully extended at the top. Sit-ups should consist of a full range of movement without bouncing the back off the floor.

This shouldn't be too difficult to achieve providing you work hard on your technique and combine both heavy weight strength training and muscular endurance every week. This will train your muscles to work past their initial fatigue point. Also don't forget to strengthen the core, shoulders, shoulder girdle and upper back, as these secondary muscles are essential in providing stabilisation that reduces the load on the primary muscles, the chest and triceps. For the bleep test, just set up two cones 20 metres apart and download a free bleep app, and combine this with sprints and endurance training.

Medical Examination

This is the part of the pre-employment medical that is harder to prepare for because they test your musculoskeletal make-up. However by regularly stretching and improving your posture, you can certainly help when it comes to the squat test and some of the more unusual movements you will need to perform to demonstrate your bodies structural stability. Just be aware that you may be required to strip down to your underwear to perform these actions. This is so the doctor can look at the way your joints move and flex