PFPO Recommendations Regarding Fitness Testing - June 2020

 

 

The Police Fitness Personnel of Ontario (PFPO) continues to promote health, fitness and lifestyle management to police personnel in the province of Ontario. 

 

Since the “Declaration of Emergency” by the Ontario legislature, the executive of the PFPO has been meeting virtually to share information and recommendations with the objective of supporting Ontario police services in providing maximum levels of service at minimum risk to members.

 

As our members are aware, since the beginning of the pandemic the PFPO recommended suspending all fitness testing associated to Ontario Police Services including but not limited to: applicant testing, recruit recertification testing, annual PIN testing for police, civilian and retired members. As our government progresses through the states of opening Ontario’s economy it is the continued position of the PFPO that all fitness testing associated to Ontario Police Services should be suspended.

 

However, the PFPO is in full understanding that policing is an essential service within the Province of Ontario and agencies are continuing with recruiting practices that, in many cases,  include fitness testing components. It is also known that the Ontario Police College is set to resume the Basic Constable Training (BCT) course in  June and this course will potentially include fitness components.

 

Therefore, the PFPO believes it prudent that should an individual police service be considering performing some form of physical testing, that along with individual police service protection measures, the following be taken into consideration in the interest of personal safety and protection for the person(s) conducting the testing and for those being tested. Please be clear, that the continued position of the PFPO, as stated above, is that all fitness testing associated to Ontario Police Services should be suspended and the provision of the below information is not an endorsement for testing to be conducted.

 

 Pre-Testing Considerations

  • Confirm that your police service is aware of the PFPO position that all fitness testing should be suspended. However, based on the needs of your service, is directing you to conduct testing. 
  • Police service permission forms have been modified to include questions surrounding current and recent state of health, specifically any Covid 19 diagnosis, any self-quarantine, etc. 
  • Ensure all persons being tested have received the appropriate modified instructions to ensure “safety” compliance rules and have signed and returned your testing authorization forms. 
  • Review all permission forms and document this review. Follow up on any information causing concern and do not test those not in full compliance or without full clearance.
  • Coordinate testing in the smallest groups possible. Individual is preferred, or in small groups (up to 5 persons) to assist with distancing.
  • Ensure test scheduling allows for extra time for extended pre and post test cleaning of equipment.

  

Testing Considerations

  • Wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at all times.  That includes gloves, mask and glasses.  This is for your own protection and the protection of the participant.
  • Keep testing time limited, to a minimum (ideally less than 10 minutes as stated by Health Canada) when in close proximity to those being tested.
  • Allow time between testing participants thus minimizing the risk of airborne particles.
  • Clean equipment that is used prior to and at the end of testing each participant.  That includes the stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, mat and the core endurance apparatus.
  • The PFPO would suggest that the shuttle run be the choice over the 2.4 km run if possible simply because it is easier to physically distance.  The preference is to be outside when conducting the shuttle run as the air movement in a gym may be stagnant and less chance for droplets to evaporate quickly. When completing the shuttle run make sure participants are at least 6 feet apart. 

 If you have any further questions you can reach out to Jo Ann Rutledge, OPFA Lead Course Conductor (  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ).