As stated, APFT events assess muscular endurance and CR fitness. The lowest passing APFT standards reflect the minimum acceptable fitness level for all soldiers, regardless of MOS or component. When applied to a command, APFT results show a unit’s overall level of physical fitness. However, they are not all-inclusive, overall measures of physical-combat readiness. To assess this, other physical capabilities must be measured. The APFT does, however, give a commander a sound measurement of the general fitness level of his unit.
Service schools, agencies, and units may set performance goals which are above the minimum APFT standards in accordance with their missions (AR 350- 15). Individual soldiers are also encouraged to set for themselves a series of successively higher APFT performance goals. They should always strive to improve themselves physically and never be content with meeting minimum standards. Competition on the APFT among soldiers or units can also be used to motivate them to improve their fitness levels.
Testing is not a substitute for a regular, balanced exercise program. Diagnostic testing is important in monitoring training progress but, when done too often, may decrease motivation and waste training time.
The test period is defined as the period of time which elapses from starting to finishing the three events. It must not take more than two hours. Soldiers must do all three events in the same test period.