Magazine article Army Reserve Magazine

19th TAACOM Hosts German Armed Forces Efficiency Test Competition

Magazine article Army Reserve Magazine

19th TAACOM Hosts German Armed Forces Efficiency Test Competition

Article excerpt

ATLANTA, Ga.-More than 120 soldiers, sailors and airmen assembled at the U.S. Army Reserve's 19th Theater Army Area Command (TAACOM), Conus Augmentation in Des Moines, Iowa recently to compete in the German Armed Forces Efficiency Test 2000. The competition included competitors ranging in rank from private to major general.

"Besides the great competition, soldiers are having fun," said Lt. Col. Jose Carbon. Carbon, who earned his GAFET Gold Badge in 1998, was the coordinator for this year's competition in Des Moines. This is the third year the 19th TAACOM has hosted a GAFET competition and the first year an invitation was extended to all USARC personnet to take part.

Regarded by many military members as one of the most challenging physical fitness tests, the GAFET originated in 1971. Standards for the test were first set by the Bundesher, the West German Army. Competitors don't compete against each other but rather a standard based on age and gender, similar to the U.S. Army Physical Fitness Test. However, the GAFET has seven categories of required fitness skills compared to the three required for the U.S. APFT.

The GAFET also requires proficiency in first aid skills. To meet this requirement the competitors in Iowa successfully completed the combat lifesaving course prior to their arrival.

Category one of the GAFET is a 200-meter swim. In the second category, competitors choose between a 100-meter dash, a 400-meter dash, or a 1000-meter run. A high jump or long jump are the two choices for the third category.

The fourth category focuses on strength training and competitors choose between a shot put throw, lifting 75% of their own body weight, or a bench press. They also have the option to complete a 100-meter swim. The average time required for all the age and gender subcategories in completing this swim is around two minutes. …

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