When you apply to be a firefighter, you will be asked to arrange a fitness assessment to check your level of aerobic fitness.
You will be required to demonstrate a standard of 42 VO² max, which is the national minimum standard for someone joining the fire service. This is achieved by a bleep test (shuttle run), which involves running continuously between two markers 20 metres apart.
The running speed is determined by an audio bleep and the interval between the bleeps decreases as you complete each level. You will need to run for roughly eight minutes and 30 seconds to achieve Level 8 Shuttle 8, which is the equivalent of a VO₂ max of 42.3. Please visit www.bleeptests.com for more information about a bleep test to help you to prepare.
- For an overview of the fitness requirements for being a firefighter, click here.
- For a useful 12 week training programme to help you achieve these standards, click here.
Firefighting is a difficult and demanding job, so we have to test whether new joiners are fit and able to perform all aspects of the role that may be required for operational duties.
Next stage: Practical assessment