National Service bids goodbye to 5BX exercises

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5bx exercise routine

Half left ready! Exercise, begin! Conscripts are probably no stranger to screaming these phrases at the top of their lungs, signalling the beginning of our standard 5BX routine consisting of jumping jacks, high jumper, crunches, push-ups and running. It is the most common form of physical training (PT) one will encounter throughout their NS phase, most commonly after waking up, right before breakfast. Imagine having to go through a physical workout just to eat breakfast, aren’t we thankful now!

5BX has been in place since the 1970s

5bx exercise routine

The new PX programme designed by physiotherapists and sports scientists at the Centre of Excellence for Soldier’s Performance (CESP) aims to reduce risks of musculoskeletal (MSK) injuries via a set of core-strengthening exercises and stretches. About time for a refresh huh?

Given the high tempo of training and the fact that we are moving outfield almost every week, some of the common injuries our guys will suffer will be injuries involving the knees, back and even the ankle,” said Captain Muhammad Ashraf, an Officer Commanding at 5 SIR.

Image Credits: Pioneer (MINDEF)

About the PX Programme

Image Credits: MINDEF

• 2 PX programmes units can choose to conduct, comprising seven and eight stations each

• Each programme is to be done twice a day

• Session last on average 30 minutes

• Units have flexibility to conduct each programme just once should there be schedule constraints

• The regime will be rolled out Army-wide by October 2021

Exercises include:

  1. Mountain climbers
  2. Single leg bridging
  3. Static leg flexor stretch
  4. Lower calf stretch

PX program will be carried out first thing in the morning, allowing soldiers to warm up their bodies before starting the day’s training.

Extra nutritional snacks to be provided

Image Credits: Pioneer (MINDEF)

Apart from the new workout regime, CESP has also introduced nutritional supplements, to provide additional carbohydrates or protein-rich snacks to soldiers in a bid to help them eat better.

If soldiers have cardio training activities such as fast marches or runs for the day, they will be provided with carbohydrate-rich snacks such as sandwiches, oatmeal cookies or bananas. On the other hand, if the unit were to be carrying out strength or hypertrophy related training such as combat circuits, they would be issued protein-rich snacks. ranging from protein bars, soya bean milk or packets of nuts.

Extra rest in the form of sleep

Image Credits: CMPB

Finally, the most looked forward change for most of our national service soldiers is extra sleep! To help soldiers “rest better”, the Army will introducea mid-week rest extensions of additional 2 hours to promote passive recovery after conducts of strenuous activities.

Do you miss your army days? Let us know what your experience in the national service was like!

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