Our Senior Assessor and Trainer Chris was invited to attend the Royal Army Physical Training Corps (RAPTC). The Corps design and train the Physical training Instructors (PTI) for the c.72,000+ British Army personnel stationed throughout the world.
He was met by Major Keir Ayling, a first class student of Study Active and shown around the facility in Aldershot.
The RAPTC were formed after the Crimean War in 1853-56 in order to improve the physical fitness of British Troops. This was a huge success with sickness and mortality rates plummeting across the Army. What greater evidence of physical exercise could you wish for!
Chris enjoyed presentations on how the RAPTC structures and manages physical training for their staff. This includes sleep management, nutrition, physical training including cardio, Strength & Conditioning and how to structure training for the most efficient and optimum result using periodised training techniques.
Training delivery and tactics are reviewed and analysed by the highly qualified senior staff. Topics such as ‘what is the benefit of the Obstacle Course?’ are analysed with historic and real time reviews of their real usefulness in a modern army. Chris expressed how fascinating it was to see the detail and professionalism applied to these ongoing reviews.
The RAPTC take a holistic view of physical and mental health with training including Yoga based movements and breath work. Chris enjoyed proactive discussions around training, yoga and correct breathing technique; a topic close to this Yoga / PT instructors’ heart.
Shouting at and berating staff or recruits is clearly a thing of the past as there was a real supportive and positive atmosphere throughout the camp. Training was being delivered in superb gym facilities and groups were being taken out on runs by PTI’s. I understand Chris expressed a wish to sign up several times though apparently he’s too old!
The RAPTC museum was a real eye opener, demonstrating how physical training has developed since the first twelve instructors were educated at Oxford during the 1860s. The Corps has also been a centre of excellence for sport with many famous sports personalities passing through its ranks including Olympian Kriss Akabusi and footballer Sir Matt Busby.
Currently the RAPTC are looking at opportunities for ex-military and non-military Personal Trainers to undergo training and deliver Physical Training to Army Reservists at centres around the UK. Anyone interested should contact: RAPTCHQ-Reserve@mod.gov.uk