Two police officers have set up a group entitled ‘Bleep Kind’ to help those in professions who have to pass a fitness test, commonly called a ‘bleep test’.
Being a police officer on today’s streets is one of the hardest jobs a person can do. The challenges they face from their everyday job can really be quite astounding and unless you have been out with the police to witness them for yourself, most of us can’t even begin to comprehend the work they do.
Being a female police officer means you are even more amazing, embarking in what was once a very male dominated role, dealing with a heavy work load and putting your body through a very physical challenge.
Carly and Jen are two serving police officers across the country who have united to set up a group to support everyone and anyone who is anxious and fears taking the bleep test.
Police officers are expected to pass this test once a year, this is the defining test that the Home Office sets out to demonstrate if our officers are fit or not. It is not an all round fitness test but an aerobics test that involves running between two posts. This test has to be passed at 5.4 level.
Carly told the Havering Daily: “When we first set this up, Jen and I thought it would be just us having a moan on social media, but suddenly we had over 600 members. The aim of the group is not saying we don’t want the bleep test as we understand why it is there. But, for our respective organisations to be more supportive and understanding when having to take these tests and perhaps understand people’s circumstances and support them more.
“We all go through many challenges in life and sometimes these put a strain on your physical body. For women for example, some may just be returning to work after having a baby or going through menopause. All things that need to be considered.
“The idea of having to run in front of lots of strangers can also be intimidating for many people and that will effect their performance.”
If you fail this fitness test then you are deemed not fit for purpose and ultimately this will impact your job.
“There are also many who have the mentality that if you can’t pass this test then you shouldn’t be in the force. They also criticise others and are unkind in their views. This group has been set up to help those who are anxious about it have a safe space where they can come together, both men and women and share their problems and fears on this.
“Women are more open about it and men as with most mental health issues struggle to be open about it. Many are anxious about taking this test and believe it is not a fair reflection of a person’s fitness. “
The two ladies have also got others on the site who are nutritionist and health experts to help anyone needing advice.
Being a police officer is already a tough job with the endless criticism they face from many, this is another issue to add to their already packed to the brim work load. Perhaps those in the higher roles can advocate to help everyday officers pass this test more comfortably.
The idea of running in front of many people you don’t know and pushing your body to the limit is not something I would feel comfortable doing either and I take my hat of to all the officers struggling out there doing amazing work in our communities.
Police officers, you are amazing remember that.