Tactical Strength and Conditioning Program Improves Physical Ability Test Performance in Fire Academy Cadets

Tactical Strength and Conditioning Program Improves Physical Ability Test Performance in Fire Academy Cadets

The Collaboration

Jabai Performance and Fire In Texas completed their second academy class collaboration, this round including a strength and conditioning program designed by TSAC instructor Hussien Jabai. The purpose of the programming is to prepare cadets for occupational tasks and job demands associated with firefighting. In order to evaluate the efficiency of the program, the two parties observed the physical abilities testing results performed by the cadets at set points throughout the 12-week academy class. The physical abilities test was designed by Fire In Texas and was not anything newly implemented by this collaboration. Texas A&M University – Commerce ROARHP Research Lab performed additional pre, mid, and post movement analysis assessments for the program. In one of our recent articles, Fire Academy Brings in Tactical Strength and Conditioning Instructor for Program Development, we explained the purpose and involvement that Jabai Performance has regarding the collaboration with Fire In Texas – Fire/EMS Academy.  

 

Tactical strength and conditioning program design was based on movements, energy systems, and common injuries associated with firefighting. Additional considerations included exertion and strain accumulated from academy curriculum, limitations of resources, and time spent with cadets.

 

The Program

Jabai incorporated an occupational readiness approach outlined as follows:

Step 1 – Introduction to movement (“Movement Preparation”)

Step 2 – Foundational movement and baseline development (“Functional Capacity Training”)

Step 3 – Job task specificity and advanced/complex movement integration (“Job Specificity Conditioning”)

 

The Physical Ability Test

The fire academy incorporates a Physical Ability Test, PAT, at the beginning, mid-point, and at the end of the academy class. The chart below displays findings from the 3 different testing sessions performed by 16 cadets of academy class 69. Although PAT specifics will remain confidential, tasks include similar job functions such as but not limited to a stair climb, dummy drag, advancing a charged hose line, and handling a ladder.

 

 

PAT Trial 1

PAT Trial 2

PAT Trial 3

Best Time – Completed

6:52

6:03

5:56

Longest Time – Completed

21:53

14:12

10:16

Average Time - Completed

10:30

8:07

7:56

 

Result summary between PAT test for week 2 and week 12

  • The best/fastest time performed by cadets improved by 56 seconds.
  • The longest time performed by cadets was reduced by 11 minutes and 37 seconds.
  • The average time performed by cadets was reduced by 2 minutes and 34 seconds.
  • Although all areas displayed improvement, the biggest improvement was evident in the longest time for a cadet to complete the PAT

 

Additional results and findings regarding the movement analysis performed by TAMUC is awaiting data analysis and research publication.

 

Main Take-away / Summary

Jabai Performance constructed a 10-week tactical strength and conditioning program that displayed improvements in physical ability test performance. The academy class displayed a decrease in the average time, longest time, and fastest time it took the cadets to complete the physical abilities test for academy class 69.

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