Fitness vloggers have been trying out pretty much every type of military physical fitness test for a few years now, from the British Army to Russian Armed Forces to U.S. Marines and Navy Seals. To mix things up on his channel, Australian YouTuber Zac Perna recently decided to take on the fitness test used to assess adolescents in high school.
“I used to dread them,” he says. “Aa big test, it was my nightmare, I used to walk the cross-country, because it would give me anxiety.”
Common staples of a high school fitness test include running (as a measure of cardiovascular endurance), a sit-and-reach (to measure flexibility), and situps (to test muscular endurance). Australian high school fitness tests frequently also measure a student’s height and weight in order to calculate their body mass index (BMI), although the accuracy of BMI as an indicator of personal health and fitness has been widely questions.
Perna starts out with the 1-mile run, and is the first to admit that he is not a strong runner. However, he completes it in a respectable 7:45, which places him in the top 55th percentile…. for 11-year-olds. “That was hell,” he pants. “I need to get my cardio fitness up, because I can’t run for shit.”
He ranks similarly in the situps test with 40 reps, but redeems himself with the pushup round, churning out 71 reps. Things look up briefly here: Perna’s standing jump measures 2.25 meters, placing him in the top 10 percent for 16-year-olds, and when performing the sit and reach, he is able to get his fingers 6cm over his toes, which is just above average for that age group.
When it comes to the next running challenge, a 50-meter sprint, Perna manages a time of 9 seconds—which puts him in the bottom 30 percent for 11-year-olds. Wounded ego aside, Perna says he enjoyed the opportunity to do the test again, especially after disliking it for so long, and jokes that “you can make money from fitness, even if you were shit at PE!”
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