BASES Webinar – Ensuring fitness for physically demanding job roles: The development of Physical Employment Standards

Tuesday, 23 May 2023 12:30 - 13:30

Overview: The BASES Occupational Performance Special Interest Group (OPSIG) aims to promote evidence-based practise amongst those undertaking research and/or scientific support with occupational groups in physically demanding job-roles. This includes but is not limited to military, security, fire, rescue and first responders. It draws on a number of specialist areas including: physiology, strength and conditioning, physical training, psychology, biomechanics, injury and rehabilitation. In this first webinar delivered through the OPSIG we will introduce the concept of Physical Employment Standards (PES) which are the role-related physical fitness tests used to screen applicants, trainees and incumbents in physically demanding occupations. The development of PES follows an evidence-based process and we will describe the frameworks and methods that are available. The process typically involves conducting a Job Task Analysis (JTA) to document the physical demands of job roles, The JTA is then used to inform the design of single-person simulations of job tasks which can be implemented as fitness assessments or correlated to simple gym-based fitness tests which can be validated and then adopted by the organisations. We will show how implementing a PES can be be used to improve physical performance, mitigate injury risk and provide legal defensibility of fitness testing procedures. Examples will be provided of how PES have been developed and implemented in physically demanding occupations such as the military, emergency services and industry