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SOURCE: AFI

The Indian Army is taking a firm stance against declining physical fitness and the growing prevalence of lifestyle diseases within its ranks. A new policy, effective immediately, aims to combat these issues through stricter measures and a renewed focus on individual health.

The policy addresses the growing concern of overweight personnel by introducing punitive action for those who fail to meet fitness standards. Individuals classified as overweight will be given a 30-day grace period to demonstrate improvement. Failure to do so will result in consequences, the specifics of which are yet to be officially announced.

The policy goes beyond simply addressing weight issues. It introduces additional tests to the existing physical fitness assessment regimen, ensuring a more comprehensive evaluation of individual health. This holistic approach aims to identify and address underlying health concerns that contribute to declining physical fitness and the rise of lifestyle diseases.

To track progress and hold individuals accountable, the Army has implemented the mandatory use of an Army Physical Fitness Assessment card (APAC). This card will serve as a personalized record of each soldier’s fitness data, including test results, progress charts, and recommendations for improvement. This centralized system allows for better monitoring and targeted interventions.

The policy also revamps the leadership structure responsible for fitness assessments. Previously, Commanding officers oversaw quarterly tests and maintained individual APAC cards. The new policy appoints a Brigadier rank officer as the presiding officer, centralizing responsibility and ensuring a more consistent and standardized approach across the Army.

The Indian Army’s new fitness policy is a timely and necessary step in addressing a growing challenge. Declining physical fitness and the rise of lifestyle diseases not only impact individual health but also pose a potential threat to operational readiness. By adopting a stricter and more holistic approach, the Army is sending a clear message that physical fitness is a top priority and that individual health is vital to the overall well-being of the force.