Posted on Jan 2, 2014
SGT(P) Section Leader
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I'm so sick of seeing squared away Soldiers freaked out about height and weight like it's the executioner. And before anyone comes on here and says, "Just lose weight, fat ass." Every single one of you has met or knows someone who was good at their job but was just not genetically created in the ridiculous 1940's mold that we're supposed to fit into.
Posted in these groups: Bilde AR 600-9Height and weight logo Height and Weight
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SSG Student
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I personally think the tape test is a cheap response to a complicated issue. Just like the rest of the Army's programs; Cheap. We want an elite force then maybe spending the money on the force is something to be had. I have seen many complain on this thread that it would cost money to train and operate the "dunk tank" but; do you not think that with so much variance in how one person tapes to another that they too should be trained and doesn't that also cost ..... money? Duh! <br><br>Let's look at some facts:<br><br>Average height of an American&nbsp;male&nbsp;(1940) - 5'6"<br>Average height of an American male (2010) - 5'10.5"<br><br>BMI was made for statistical populations and developed in the 1880's where the average height for a North American male was 5'4". <br><br>Americans are bigger stronger, faster than we were when these "Standards" were developed. <br><br>I am 6'3" 217lbs 27yrs old. My table weight is 212 lbs. I have never made that table weight yet I am roughly 13% BF and usually score a 270+ on my APFT. Please explain this.....Yet I always fear the tape. Why? Because there has been times where I have been taped damn near the limit and once I was taped over and placed on the ABCP. Was I really out of shape? 270+ APFT? I don't think so. So I requested a re tape where in now&nbsp;I was&nbsp;under the limit. What happened next you ask? No, I was not removed from the ABCP until 30 days passed and I was able to "show progress" and pass another tape. I am currently off the program but, this is just bullshit. Now I will worry for the next 36 months if I&nbsp;get someone who tapes me wrong; Will I get kicked out?&nbsp;Invest into your forces, Not in your pockets. Pay for the right tools to maintain the worlds elite. And if you dont want to invest into the right tools then maybe its time you re-evaluate the standards to the average size of an American today. Stop being Cheap!
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SFC Observer   Controller/Trainer (Oc/T)
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<p>My suggestion would be to tie it to the APFT. Here's a potential way to do it;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>290-300: 1st class APFT, exempt from Body Fat testing requirements.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>280--289: 2nd class APFT, must meet standards in Body Fat tables, within +/- 5% .</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>279 and below: 3rd class APFT, must meet the standards per the regulation.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>So those mythical "300 APFT'ers who can't meet tape" that we always hear about and yet no one has ever seen/met would be taken care of, and it gives people more of an incentive to strive for.</p><p>&nbsp;</p>
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MAJ Field Auditor
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6 y
SGT(P) (Join to see) - However, that is the exception, not the rule. Nearly always quoted by those who are taped...
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MAJ Field Auditor
MAJ (Join to see)
6 y
SFC Billy Garner - So true, that statement "but he's a good soldier". A good soldier meets the standard. A great one exceeds the standard!
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CPT Intelligence Planner
CPT (Join to see)
6 y
Saying "it's the standard" is a cop out of being a thinking leader. Yes, while standards are in place we as leaders are obligated to enforce them. We are though also tasked with being professionals. Professionals not only meet standards, they define them, and they define how to measure them. Measures of effectiveness and performance are a good way to approach this kind of thing - "Are we doing things right" is "meeting the standard". "Are we doing the right things" is "defining the standard". How we define what a fit soldier is, and how we measure it is important, and I concur that our framework is off what we want it to be. Our current method has been shown to be an inaccurate measure of fitness when it comes to body fat percentages. And I have known the 300+ soldier, platoon sergeant whose weight and dimensions always caused him issues during tape - yet his body fat percentage was well within healthy ranges, and he wasn't exactly a power lifter either. Something like the water bouyancy test would have clearly demonstrated his body fat percentage.
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CSM Mike Maynard
CSM Mike Maynard
6 y
CPT (Join to see) - if this PSG was well within healthy range with his body fat, then he met/exceeded the standard. Why should/would we need to do a water buoyancy test? It seems that this shows that our body fat standards are within reason.

It is rare, but there is the exception, to see a 300+ Soldier not meet the body fat standard.
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1SG Steven Stankovich
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I have been in the Army for a little over 23 years.&nbsp; For the last 21 years, I have been taped after every weigh-in.&nbsp; I'm a big guy and that is just the way it is.&nbsp; If I lose the weight needed to make my "table weight,"&nbsp;I believe that I will wither away and die.&nbsp; I do what I need to do to make tape, not weight.&nbsp; Right, wrong or indifferent, that has worked for me. &nbsp;I am not a big fan of our current means of height and weight tables, but those are what are outlined in AR 600-9, and until changed, that is what the regulation is.
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MAJ Company Commander
MAJ (Join to see)
6 y
If we bought calipers or some other new system, someone would just start complaining about how unfair the new system was. History tells us that the guys that can't pass tape are usually heavy in the unhealthy way... Not too muscular to make weight. Similarly, guys who can't pass a PT test usually are weak in an unhealthy way, but many of them are quick to point out how "unfair" the PT test. My recommendation to everyone that is struggling to pass tape or PT tests: look inward to see where you can improve. Stop trying the blame the method of assessment. But I think most of them already know that.
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CSM Mike Maynard
CSM Mike Maynard
6 y
MAJ (Join to see) - funny you should mention calipers - the Army used to use calipers, but there were so many complaints because people didn't know how to use them properly. We'll never have a perfect system, but we have a "good enough" system.

I agree with you completely that on the average those that fail the BF% or fail the APFT are generally our least fit.
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SPC Chaplain Assistant
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6 y
SFC (Join to see) - I have the same battle
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SFC Platoon Sergeant
SFC (Join to see)
>1 y
The Army doesn't even have to pay for the calipers, just authorize alternative methods (e.g., results reported from recognized medical professionals). I would be happy to pay out of pocket for an alternative measurement opposed to starving myself twice a year and potentially developing nutritional deficiencies or eating disorders to maintain a healthy career. I understand that the taping method is more cost effective and field expedient, but the Army did a disservice to its people when it revoked authorized alternatives. The previous (pre-2012) taping method was fairly accurate on me, but now I HAVE to make weight. Short female, tiny (and long) neck, short torso, large bust, large hips. Even with six-pack abs I wasn't able to tape below standards. If senior leaders can't trust Commanders enough with the authority to determine and maintain their units' fitness (i.e., waivers) then the least they could do is authorize alternatives for those of us willing to provide it ourselves. Everyone I know knows of at least one person who was CLEARLY Army fit, if not Army perfect, who just couldn't meet the measurements demanded by this archaic system. Meanwhile, we have Soldiers and leaders walking around with a solid 3-6 months of food stores around their waists who meet the standards primarily because of their neck measurements. This is a grotesque example of mismanagement and abuse of good people by the highest levels of authority. When are we going to fix this??
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