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Health and Fitness

Spring PFA Cycle Incorporates BCA Changes

5 things every Sailor needs to know

Time is not the only thing springing forward this physical fitness assessment cycle. So too are the Navy's new requirements for assessing physical fitness.


This spring's PFA cycle will be the first to use the new body composition assessment, or BCA, changes. NAVADMIN 061/16 was released this month with details about all the changes Sailors can expect.

Here are five things you need to know about the BCA changes.

1. The new BCA will be a three-step process. The first measurement will be done using the current height and weight table. If Sailors pass the first measurement, then they pass the BCA. If not, the Sailor then must do an abdominal circumference measurement. Sailors will pass the BCA if their abdominal circumference assessment is less than or equal to 39 inches for males and less than or equal to 35.5 inches for females. If the second measurement is also failed, the Sailor must get a body circumference measurement. Sailors will pass the BCA by meeting the DoD maximum allowable body fat limit of less than or equal to 26 percent for males and less than or equal to 36 percent for females.

2. Sailors who are medically cleared must take the physical readiness test, or PRT, portion of the PFA even if they fail the BCA portion. A BCA failure will be counted as an overall PFA failure for that cycle regardless of PRT results. Two PFA failures in a 3-year period will result in an administrative separation from the Navy.

3. BCA failures will automatically be enrolled in the fitness enhancement program, or FEP. All medically cleared Sailors enrolled in FEP will be required to do a mock PFA every 30 days. Mock PFA failures will not count as official failures against Sailors. Sailors will be removed from FEP once a mock or official PRT is passed and the new BCA requirements are met.

4. All Sailors who did not complete the cycle 2 2015 PFA because of pregnancy, medical waiver or deployment/operational status will not be counted as pass or fail for the PFA. These Sailors will still be held to the new PFA failure policy and their most recent failure will carry over.

5. Commanding officers can now conduct surprise BCA "spot checks." These spot checks can be done at any time at the CO's discretion to help Sailors correct deficiencies before the official PFA. It is not intended to be a punishment but a way to provide additional support to avoid failures or administrative punishments.

It is the responsibility of each individual Sailor to be accountable for their health and physical fitness standards at all times.

The NAVADMIN and all the information you need is at the Navy Personnel Command website.

To view NAVADMIN 061/16, click here.

Graphic for the AHM story on PRT Standards.