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PSNI applicants snub help on how to pass gruelling fitness test

By Deborah McAleese

Published 02/06/2015

A female PSNI recruit takes the gruelling fitness test, which includes an obstacle course that must be completed three times
A female PSNI recruit takes the gruelling fitness test, which includes an obstacle course that must be completed three times

Expert fitness advice has been offered to PSNI recruits to help them pass its physical test.

The advice sessions were introduced to address concerns over the low success rate for female applicants to the PSNI because of the assessment. But a third of female candidates from the PSNI's most recent recruitment campaign failed to turn up to the new support sessions.

"We had familiarisations prior to the test ... but probably only a third of male applicants and two-thirds of female applicants actually attended," the PSNI's head of physical and health education Joanne Palmer told Police Oracle.

The PSNI's fitness test is the most difficult such assessment in the UK. There has been concern over the low success rate for female PSNI applicants, with the fitness test being a problem.

Earlier this year, Assistant Chief Constable Alistair Finlay, who has since left the force, said the reason so few women were passing the test was because they were not fit enough. Candidates who fail are now offered five support sessions to try and get prepared for the retest within 12 months of failing.

Previously if a candidate failed the physical,0 they were immediately disqualified from the recruitment process.

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