Are Women Strong Enough for Military Service ?

Detractors say that women on average are not as strong as men. While this is fact, there are women who could qualify for service. Through out history their are times when women have taken up arms to fight for their country. Women who are physically capable and do pass the requirements still face a level of bias. Ideas of male physical superiority and female inferiority are still prevalent. The truth is not every man is able to be a soldier. However, when the term warrior is used automatically one thinks male. The Army Physical Readiness Test continues to undergo changes. Examining the test one can see that there are some women who could qualify.

There are on the APRT events that an applicant will have to perform. The first is a one minute push-up, followed by a 1.5 mile run. A 60 yard shuttle run is included as well as a one minute rower. The standing long jump is also a part of the test. These tests asses strength,mobility, and endurance. The ACRT  is another test that adds warrior tasks. This contains the agility sprint, casualty drag, ammo can shuttle sprint, 400 meter run, and individual movement techniques . At first, one would think this is too much for women to do. Yet, one should seek women who have experience with physically demanding tasks. There are athletic women, who have immense strength. Army recruiters do not pay attention to them.

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Bodybuilder Colette Nelson lifts a man easily. I do not think she would have trouble with the casualty drag.

Upon further investigation,  the test  has undergone revision. The reason is the army wants a precise measurement of physical fitness, not just an accurate one. Some believe that the only way women could be successful is to lower the standard. This is both sexist and insulting. Considering there are examples of women who may even over qualify. The US Army has dropped the  three pull-ups requirement arbitrarily. According to their data, 55% of women could not meet the requirement. The problem here is that these women lack upper body strength and need to increase it.  The only solution is improved physical fitness training.

Women lack upper body strength, but this can be reversed with intense weight training. Resistance training in particular can increase strength by external resistance, which will cause muscle contraction. With a strict training regimen doing three pull-ups will not be a problem. The US military has to make the effort to improve women’s performance.

The women in the video are capable of doing more than three pull-ups. The reason is they took a huge amount of time and effort to do so. The army also has a weight management  program, so why not a strength training program? Instruction and a level of coaching can make a world of difference. Here is another video of a personal trainer demonstrating the proper way to do pull-ups.

The fascinating aspect of this is the woman can do different types of pull-ups. Maybe the army should contact her as a drill sargent.  If the army really wants women to be successful, in physical fitness testing they are going to need extra training. This should be a requirement before taking the APRT.


Many are still influenced by the weaker sex stereotype, but the reality is different  

Detractors continue to say ad nauseam that physically women are not suitable for this type of role. There are women on the police force and who serve as fire fighters. These are physically demanding jobs, but excluded women on the same basis. Women who participate in strength sports would have no difficulty meeting the fitness standard. Women who weight train will not experience the same degree of muscular hypertrophy as a man, but can gain a considerable amount of strength. Endocrinology is not the only factor in strength. Some women are born with a genetic likelihood of a mesomorphic body type. The two mile run should not be an issue either seeing as it is an endurance event. Type I muscle fibers, which women have more of are best suited for endurance.

       The US army has little respect for women. There is clear proof of discrimination on the part of the institution.. Women who do pass the fitness test enter a hostile environment. It is lugubrious, because they volunteered to serve and contribute. The military has to overturn a male only culture. Second views and attitudes have to change, if progress is to be made.

Are Women Strong Enough for Military Service ?

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