US Marine Corps Physical Fitness Test

Marine corps physical fitness

Physical fitness is required of all Marines, regardless of age, grade, or service assignment. Marines are obliged to complete at least three hours of physical fitness training every week. Those who are not physically fit are a liability to their unit’s readiness and combat efficiency, as well as to their Service’s overall performance.

Marine Corps Physical Training

Physical fitness training in the Marine Corps is meant to educate, then test and assess, a very high degree of physical fitness in a short length of time. It is based on ideas that will put your physical courage, willpower, and determination to the test while preparing you for the hardships of becoming a Marine.

Physical Characteristics of a US Marine

Marine corps physical fitness
Aspiring Marines lifting tire during a physical fitness test. Credit: US Marines

Physical fitness.

Physical fitness refers to a healthy body and the ability to tolerate the pressures of prolonged action and a harsh environment for Marines. It encompasses the ability to bear the discomforts that come with weariness as well as the ability to retain fighting effectiveness.


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Stamina is the most crucial part of fitness for Marines since it combines muscular and cardiovascular endurance. Because cardiovascular fitness contributes to general health and longevity, it should be the foundation for all physical exercise. Cardiovascular endurance is directly linked to muscular endurance. It is the physical trait that will allow you to engage in moderate-intensity activity for an extended period of time. For Marines, this means being able to march great distances while carrying heavy burdens or working long hours but yet having enough reserve to continue in an emergency.


This is the capacity to manipulate weight, or in the case of a Marine, his or her own and maybe another Marine’s body weight. A certain amount of strength is also necessary for appearance, confidence and load-carrying abilities. A Marine must be able to support his or her own weight; if he or she cannot, he or she is either too overweight or too weak.

US Marine Corps Physical Fitness Requirements

There’s probably no better way to figure out what’s important to you than to see if it’s still important when you’re tired. Is it still worthwhile to fight on? Is the desire to quit stronger than the shared moral cause you fight for? In order to discover these answers, prospective Marines are put through physically demanding tests that will expose their true dedication, as their country cannot afford to place its trust in those who fall behind.

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Marine Corps Physical Fitness Test

Aspiring Marines doing pull-ups. Credit: US Marines

The PFT (Marine Corps Physical Fitness Test) is a test that assesses the stamina and physical conditioning in Marines.

Pull-ups or push-ups, crunches or plank stance, and a 3-mile timed run are the three major components of the test.


Pull-ups and push-ups are vital for developing the upper-body strength required to win contests. Crunches and planks are essential for maintaining a strong core and being ready to fight at any moment. Males must run the three-mile course in under 28 minutes. Females must finish the three-mile run in under 31 minutes.

The PFT is the Physical Fitness Test that all recruits must pass.

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READ ALSO: Mental Benefits Of Physical Activity

US Marine Combat Fitness Test

The Marine Corps Combat Fitness Test, or CFT, tests functional fitness and simulates the demands of battle in combat utility clothes.

The three components of this test include; Movement to Contact, Ammunition Lift, and Maneuver Under Fire.

Aspiring Marines running during a physical fitness test. Credit: US Marines

The Movement to Contact drill is an 880-yard sprint that simulates the strains of combat running. Marines must raise a 30-pound ammunition can overhead until their elbows lock out in the Ammunition Lift. The objective is to lift the can as many times as possible within a predetermined time limit. The Maneuver Under Fire is a 300-yard course that includes crawls, ammo resupply, grenade tossing, agility running, and the dragging and carrying of another Marine, among other battle-related difficulties.

The Combat Fitness Test guarantees that Marines are physically prepared for the rigors of combat operations at all times.

Source: Marines.

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