Mobile Training Applications for Preparation of Conscripts to Military Service

Wyss, Thomas (June 2019). Mobile Training Applications for Preparation of Conscripts to Military Service (Unpublished). In: CISM Sport Science Symposium. Quito, Ecuador. 03-08.06.2019.

Introduction In many countries, a decrease in cardiorespiratory fitness over the last three decades was observed.1-3 At the same time Wyss, Scheffler, & Mäder 4 demonstrated, that daily military routine often is physically and mentally more demanding than civilian life. Therefore, armed forces have to address the challenge of this imbalance between physical capabilities and physical demands of their trainees and soldiers. Thus, armed forces rely amongst other on a specific physical selection of their personal and qualitatively and quantitatively good physical training during military service.5-7 Lately, several new projects aiming to enable conscripts and trainees for individual physical preparation prior to military service were developed, resulting in commercially available military-related mobile training applications. Method Firstly, trainees at a Swiss Armed forces training school answered a questionnaire about their individual preparation for basic military training. Secondly, different mobile training applications for conscripts’ preparation for military service were compared. Results A questionnaire answered by 145 trainees of the Swiss Armed Forces showed that they did not perceive themselves as physically ready for military service. Nonetheless, only 18% reported performing specific physical preparation for military service. However, 40% of conscripts perform active customization of their combat boots prior to military service by getting used to wearing and walking in them. The latter shows, that there is some potential to increase the number of conscripts that voluntarily prepare for military service, if an adequate and easy to use instrument would be available. Consequently, the Swiss Armed Forces developed a mobile training application as a digital tool for conscripts to individually prepare for military service. The highlights of the six selected training applications are presented here. The application ready #teamarmee (Swiss Armed Forces) is easy to administer, implements an autonomous fitness test, the training program is based on individual's fitness level and adapted to all military personal functions (or training goals). The FMTK (Swedish Armed Forces) is very well known in Sweden and popular as a contributor to improve the general population’s health. MarsMars (Finnish Defence Forces) is a comprehensive library with training programs for strength, endurance and flexibility, available in twelve languages and allows connectivity to different sport watches. MFT (Danish Defence Forces) is an applicatoin focusing uniquely on military employees and is based on the individual's fitness level and adapted to all military personal functions. 100% Army fit (British Armed Forces) is very popular and displays great graphic design. SummFit (Germany) is based on a training science system with a personalized digital coach and a mix of different training methods. All investigated training applications offer endurance, strength and agility training. Some include flexibility and others balance training as well. Discussion and Conclusion Several high quality mobile training applications, available for the specific preparation for military service, are on the marked. The training programs in these applications factor in individuals’ fitness level and are adapted to the physical demands of specific military functions. Investigations about the effect of such mobile training applications on injury incidence rates and military performance are needed. Further development could be focused on the integration of mental (resilience) training. Lamoureux NR, Fitzgerald JS, Norton KI, Sabato T, Tremblay MS, and Tomkinson GR. Temporal Trends in the Cardiorespiratory Fitness of 2,525,827 Adults Between 1967 and 2016: A Systematic Review. Sports Med. 2019. 49(1): p. 41-55. Wyss T, Beuchat C, Zehr S, and Mäder U. Physical performance in young men at Swiss Army recruitment 1982 to 2005. Schweizerische Zeitschrift für Sportmedizin und Sporttraumatologie. 2009. 57(2): p. 75-77. Wyss T, Roos L, Studer F, Mader U, Beuchat C, and Staub K. Development of physical fitness performance in young Swiss men from 2006 to 2015. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2019. 29(4): p. 586-596. Wyss T, Scheffler J, and Mader U. Ambulatory physical activity in swiss army recruits. Int J Sports Med. 2012. 33(9): p. 716-22. Roos L, Hofstetter MC, Mader U, and Wyss T. Training Methods and Training Instructors' Qualification Are Related to Recruits' Fitness Development During Basic Military Training. J Strength Cond Res. 2015. 29 Suppl 11: p. S178-S186. Wyss T, Roos L, Hofstetter MC, Frey F, and Mader U. Impact of training patterns on injury incidences in 12 Swiss Army basic military training schools. Mil Med. 2014. 179(1): p. 49-55. Wyss T, Von Vigier RO, Frey F, and Mader U. The Swiss Army physical fitness test battery predicts risk of overuse injuries among recruits. J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2012. 52(5): p. 513-21.

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Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)


Swiss Federal Institute of Sports Magglingen SFISM


Wyss, Thomas




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Date Deposited:

12 Oct 2022 08:35

Last Modified:

12 Oct 2022 08:35

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