Law Enforcement Exploring Physical Fitness Proficiency Award

From MeritBadgeDotOrg

Jump to: navigation, search
Law Enforcement Exploring
Physical Fitness Proficiency Award

Law Enforcement Exploring Physical
Fitness Proficiency Award Ribbon
SKU: 614438
Last updated:



The National Law Enforcement Exploring Committee approved the Physical Fitness Proficiency Award for Law Enforcement Exploring to encourage Explorers to maintain a healthy lifestyle and physical fitness. Law enforcement officials have become concerned about the degradation of physical fitness in young adults interested in becoming law enforcement officers. These officials recognize how critical physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle are to the law enforcement profession. The lack of physical fitness and an unhealthy lifestyle leads to a host of performance and health issues that negatively impact the individual, the agency, and the community; not to mention the debilitating financial effect to pension plans caused by avoidable disability claims and health relate insurance costs. This award also helps to fulfill the Life Skills component (“to develop physical and mental fitness”) of the five areas of emphasis for Exploring.


Any number of national studies have shown that a fair portion of young people are not properly focused in regard to their physical fitness and overall health. A lack of physical activity and a disconnect with nutritional knowledge have been noted. As a result, many persons required to perform job entry level physical agility tests have displayed less than stellar scores. These results have not only been found in law enforcement and the military, but other career fields. It is not within the scope of this award to physically develop an Explorer to the degree that they might pass any job physical fitness testing. The award is intended to reward those Explorers who exhibit the personal characteristics of practicing healthy lifestyle habits and lifestyle management. The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) and The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) graciously accepted the job of assisting in the creation of the criteria in which any Law Enforcement Explorer can achieve success.

Award Concept

FLETC and the IACP developed a physical and cognitive assessment that would challenge Explorers; be non-exclusionary in nature to gender, age, facilities and equipment availability; and be long lasting. This award rewards those Explorers who show a level of understanding of the importance of physical fitness through testing. This award is not created to separate the “most fit” from the “unfit”, it is intended to be a reward for those Explorers engaged in and practicing lifestyle habits which promote physical fitness as a lifelong pursuit. The award has two levels: Fitness Award and Distinguished Fitness Award. The Fitness Award consists of base line achievement that can be accomplished with moderate effort but should require practice of physical form, and reading/studying. The Distinguished Fitness Award consists of greater achievement that may take extra physical preparation, and requires a higher score on the cognitive assessment side.


The award consists of two (2) phases: Physical assessment and Cognitive assessment.

  1. The physical assessment was created to include a health screening format to assist the Explorer in determining if they should proceed with the physical assessment. A standardized assessment format ensures that the assessments are universal in nature and easy to administer by Advisors. And, assessment utilizing minimal equipment avoids excluding Explorers that do not have access to specialized items and allows them to understand that fitness can be accomplished almost anywhere. Using eight (8) assessment tools (CurlUps, Push-Ups, 1 Mile Run, 1 ½ Mile Run (18 through 20 year old Explorers), Pull-Ups, Flexed-Arm Hang, Shuttle Run, and Body Mass Index) does not inhibit the assessment process by being too time consuming, yet allows for testing “core” physicality.
  2. The cognitive assessment was developed utilizing universally accepted knowledge, skills and abilities. Information in regard to basic nutrition, cardiovascular disease risk factors, obesity risk factors, food label interpretation, as well as basic components of a successful exercise program is presented in website link format. A twenty (20) question written evaluation, in multiple choice format, will determine learning results.


An Explorer, or any number of Explorers, must coordinate with their Advisor in regard to the process and documentation of obtaining this award. The recommended steps are as follows:

  1. The Explorer informs their Advisor of their intent to seek the award. The Advisor downloads the appropriate forms (Appendices A-C1).
  2. The Explorer completes the Physical Activities Readiness Questionnaire (PAR-Q) (Appendix A).
  3. The Explorer reviews the Physical Assessment Standards for the Fitness and Distinguished Fitness Awards (Appendices A1 and A2).
  4. The Explorer reviews the examples of the Physical Assessments for Curl-Ups, Push-Ups, Mile Run(s), Pull-Ups, Flexed-Arm Hang, and Shuttle Run (Appendices A3, A4, A5, and A6).
  5. The Explorer reviews the Cognitive Assessment Study Guide and visits the various websites to gain basic nutrition and health knowledge (Appendix B).
  6. The Explorer informs their Advisor that they wish to take the Cognitive Assessment (Appendix B1).
  7. The Advisor administers the test and then requests the Cognitive Assessment answers (Appendix B2 answers) by email to National Support Staff, Cathy Wilson, [email protected] The Assessment is given by the Advisor or Designee and then scored, with the results recorded (Appendix C or C1).
  8. The Explorer informs their Advisor that they wish to take the Physical Assessment for either the Fitness or Distinguished Fitness Award.
  9. The Advisor, or his/her designee, (i.e., agency fitness coordinator or other qualified adult) administers the assessment and records the results along with determining and documenting the Body Mass Index – BMI (Appendix C or C1). This person also determines the best venue for the Curl-Ups, Push-Ups, Mile Run(s), Pull-Ups, Flexed-Arm Hang, and Shuttle Run.
  10. The Advisor completes the Award Notifification Form (Attachment 1), and then downloads the appropriate award certificate (Attach. 2 or 3) and requests the ribbon through the National Supply Division. The gold star for the Distinguished Fitness Award can also be ordered through the National Office #610612. The Advisor presents the Explorer the earned recognition items at an appropriate venue.
  11. In order to retain the privilege of wearing the ribbon bar (as well as the Distinguished Fitness Award star, if it was earned) an Explorer must successfully complete both the physical and cognitive components of the test each year on or before the date the award/star was earned.

External links

Personal tools