BACKGROUND: Fitness could influence task performance in police officers. Limited research details relationships between different fitness characteristics and police-specific tasks.
OBJECTIVE: Determine relationships between anaerobic and aerobic capacity with police-specific task performance.
METHODS: Data for 308 recruits was analysed. Fitness tests included: push-ups, sit-ups, and mountain climbers (muscular endurance); pull-ups (strength); vertical jump (VJ) and 2 kg medicine ball throw (MBT; power); 75-yard pursuit run (75PR; change-of-direction speed); 201 m run (anaerobic capacity); 2.4 km run and multistage fitness test (aerobic capacity). Police tasks included: 99-yard obstacle course (99OC); 74.84 kg body drag (BD); chain link fence (CLF) and solid wall (SW) climbs; and 500-yard run (500R). Partial correlations controlling for sex and linear regression calculated relationships between fitness and job tasks.
RESULTS: 99OC correlated with all assessments; BD only with 75PR. CLF related to the power and aerobic capacity tests, pull-ups, and 201 m run. SW related to VJ, 75PR, pull-ups, sit-ups, 201 m run, and aerobic capacity. 500R related to all except the MBT and 2.4 km run. 75PR and VJ predicted 4/5 tasks.
CONCLUSIONS: Police research has shown the importance of muscular endurance and aerobic capacity. Specific to this studies' correlations, the value of power and change-of-direction speed development for task performance was indicated.