At any rate, a couple of forces had each member pass the test, 100%. Kudos to Northumbria and Humberside.
The Northumbria force is a territorial force. Its motto is: “Total Policing.”
Don’t like the sounds of that.
In fact, according to Vera Baird QC, the Police & Crime Commissioner, these are the priorities for the police officers: “...to prioritise Anti-Social Behaviour, Violence Against Women & Girls, Reducing Crime, Building Community Confidence and Putting Victims First...”
Basically the cops are to do everything.
No wonder they are in fit form. They also have to deal with counter-terrorism while they’re at it. It would seem, therefore, the police are being pushed and pulled into almost every condition of chore, cause, circumstance, and calamity.
Not surprisingly, there is a push-and-pull fitness test – done, at least, for the West Midlands police force – at the end of their other tests. 5.8 % of the West Midlands constabulary flunks. No word on the sentences they receive. In actual fact, offenders are given the chance to redo, once they’ve whipped themselves into a semblance of shape.
(Back in 2010 the London Police Force, AKA Scotland Yard, had over 50% of its men deemed overweight. Pay cuts were threatened for those that flunked fitness tests three times.)
As of May 2014, when the story of the latest fitness flops came out, data had not been available from the biggest force, the Metropolitan force. (Perhaps being the biggest doesn't mean that a big, fat due date applies...)
The fulcrum of the fitness ordeals is balanced on the “bleep test.” It’s also known as the God-d&8%4!!! test; the F...’in test; the I’m-quitting-while-I’m-behind test; and the beep test. It’s a 15 minute shuttle-run adventure, done under ever increasing, in frequency, beeps. If you’d like to try your hand, heart, legs, lungs at this Multi Stage Fitness Test – the College of Policing details what’s required. You have to pass this test, among others no doubt, to be considered police-worthy.
in a dream world would have one’s force as agile as antelopes, as wise as Solomon, as brave as suffragettes, as committed as can be.
How does the bleep, or beep, test help in that? BBC News UK reports on expectations: “The current guidelines expect officers to reach a score of 5.4 on the bleep test (four shuttles each within approximately 6.9 seconds...)”
Now, here are the gradations. Level one, runs for just under a minute, and has the longest beep interval of seven seconds. Assuming you’re still alive, it’s at about one minute 42 seconds and level three begins. Level four two minutes 30 seconds. How long can this go on? Level 14 is at the ten minute 25 second mark – and the beeps come in, irritatingly, annoyingly fast – about every three seconds.
This should be enough to dissuade one from joining the police force(s).
A lot can be done in 15 minutes. One can drown if they’ve washed their hair under water all that time.
That will get them their 15 minutes of fame, for instance.
For substance, one can die trying this bastardly beep test. The video beep test I followed went to 17 levels and stopped at 13 minutes 44 seconds – maybe the video got tired. I’m whacked, and I only listened...
Of course many organizations not only listen, but do this test. The Royal Military College of Canada. The Scottish Police, the Australian Army, even the French Foreign Legion. It’s just as well our stellar Northumbria force passed not only the bleep test but the bleepin’ fitness test as a whole. Apart from the priorities quoted above, they’ve got to be ready for any nefarious activity. Like, and we are not kidding here, theft of police equipment.
Back to the beep test. Outside of annoying people you don’t like, who you then subject to same, what are some of its other pluses?
Well, it’s easy to understand, doesn't cost a lot, and is perniciously popular with tyrannical tryout task masters – so that standards and summations of practices, results, and research are readily available. It’s a good measure of anaerobic fitness and aerobic fitness (stamina) levels: bobbies need to meet the physical pressures from dealing with mooks, miscreants, and mop ups. Of course, having physical capacity is a walk in the park compared to the emotional and intellectual capacity needed - barraged as they are by not only the dictates of pompous politicians but by the undecipherable, unfathomable, orders mandated man-splayed by pain-in-the a – s senior brass.
Finally, in case we have hopes for healthy, hale, police forces in the UK going forward, let’s not hold our breath. Here’s what their web site says about the police fitness test: “…It is, in all honestly, considerably easier than it once was…”