COL Chua (left) briefing Mr Chan (centre, holding a wearable fitness band) on the Self-Administered IPT initiative. With them is Chief of Army Major-General Perry Lim.
The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) kickstarted its four-month Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT) Preparatory Training (IPT)-in-the-Park trial last Thursday evening (September 18, 2014).
Held at Bishan Park, the inaugural trial session was graced by the presence of Chan Chung Sing, Second Minister for Defence, and Chief of Army Major-General Perry Lim.
During the event, Chan announced the trial of a Self-Administered IPT which allows NSmen to use technology to monitor and track their own IPT progress. IPT is currently held at army camps, but with the implementation of this new technology, NSmen can conveniently clock in the sessions anywhere and anytime.
NSmen will need to download a mobile application on their smartphones called Interactive Diet and Activity Tracker (iDAT). Developed by the Health Promotion Board, the iDAT app measures the distance one covers during a run.
Besides this, NSmen can also use a wearable fitness band, known as FitBit, to help count the number of steps taken during a run. This FitBit is synced to the user's smartphone so that data captured during a run can be transferred to it. This data can then be accessed by the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) to keep track of an NSman's fitness progress.
This Self-Administered IPT trial is apparently one of the four initiatives the SAF has introduced to engage and engender greater fitness ownership amongst NSmen through flexible training options, according to MINDEF. Other initiatives include the revised IPPT format, IPT programme enhancements at Fitness Conditioning Centres and the IPT-in-the-Park trial.
"We have made various changes to help our NSmen better prepare for their fitness test and also to make it more convenient for them. Some of these recent initiatives include the IPT-in-the-Park, which will bring greater convenience to the NSmen. We hope all these will help the NSmen improve their fitness eventually. We are very happy to see NSmen taking charge of their own fitness because that tells people that they are committed," said Chan.
He added that he was heartened at how NSmen are taking fitness training seriously, and the SAF hopes to encourage more NSmen to keep fit with flexible options that cater to different training needs of our servicemen.
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