USS George Washington Sailors Participate in Physical Fitness Testing

Story Number: NNS110520-06Release Date: 5/20/2011 5:04:00 AM
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By Joe Schmitt, Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka Public Affairs

YOKOSUKA, Japan (NNS) -- USS George Washington (CVN 73) Sailors began their spring physical fitness assessment (PFA) May 2 in Yokosuka, Japan.

The testing period spans several weeks, but most of the crew will complete the test within two weeks.

The PFA is conducted twice a year by Sailors, and the tests check to make sure that Sailors are "fighting fit" and that they are physically capable of carrying out their missions.

The PFA consists of a body composition analysis (BCA) where Sailors are measured for their body fat percentage. The second part of the PFA is the physical readiness test (PRT) where Sailors must complete a required number of push-ups, sit-ups and a 1.5 mile run within a set time limit.

Lt. Kevin Wilson, assistant command fitness leader, was in charge of managing the test May 4. Assistant command fitness leaders are crew members that work for the command fitness leader and help administer the test.

"I like leading them through the exercise, getting them motivated," said Wilson. "Getting [the Sailors] through the standardized warm-ups and ready to do their best, that's my favorite part."

Sailors from George Washington's Religious Ministries, Safety and other departments were taking the PFA May 4.

"The main department going today is the Air Department, which has roughly 630 people. So, all of Air Department will be out here today to get the PRT part of their PFA done," said Wilson. "Tomorrow will be another department with another large group to get through this process."

Electronics Technician 1st Class Mark Bain was an assistant command fitness leader working with Wilson to make sure everyone was safe and working their way through the PRT.

"I like doing this, running a group this big and keeping them motivated, it can be a challenge," said Bain. "I'm confident we can get it done and that our [Sailors] are going to get some good scores."

George Washington Sailors must maintain their fitness when at sea using on board gyms and equipment.

"Because we have such a short time in port, it means that our work hours can be more strenuous than other carriers," said Wilson. "So, having our guys in good shape not only helps them stay focused when at work, but it helps them be more productive in this unique environment."

Wilson emphasized that Sailors' fitness is always important, not just for passing the PFA, but to always be ready if the Navy orders them to support individual augmentee missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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